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Entrepreneurial Competencies

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“Entrepreneurial competencies can be defined as underlying characteristics such as generic and specific knowledge, motives, traits, self-images, social roles and skills that result in venture birth, survival, and/or growth.”- Bird (1995) 

Competence is a combination of knowledge, skills and appropriate motives or traits that an individual must possess to perform a given task.

Thus, success of an entrepreneur is governed by entrepreneurial competencies. If he has all these competencies, he can be expected to achieve his entrepreneurial goals.


Entrepreneurial Competencies Definition 

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Bird (1995) defined “Entrepreneurial competencies can be defined as underlying characteristics such as generic and specific knowledge, motives, traits, self-images, social roles and skills that result in venture birth, survival, and/or growth.”

The success of a small scale industrial venture depends on the inherent viability of the project, and the way the project is planned, implemented and managed.

As far as the planning, implementation and management of a small scale enterprise is concerned, it is the entrepreneur who carries out most of the functions. It is he/she who acts as a driving force behind the performance of these tasks. And, in order to carry them out efficiently, the entrepreneur needs to have certain knowledge, skills and an appropriate personality profile. All these put together could be termed as competencies.

Competence is a combination of knowledge, skills and appropriate motives or traits that an individual must possess to perform a given task.

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Entrepreneurial competencies are defined as underlying characteristics possessed by a person, which result in new venture creation.

These characteristics include generic and specific knowledge, motives, traits, self-images, social roles, and skills that may or may not be known to the person. That is, these characteristics may be even unconscious attributes of an individual. Some of these competencies are innate while others are acquired in the process of learning and training and development.

Entrepreneurial Competencies and Traits

Entrepreneurial behaviour requires certain knowledge, skill or personality profile. Generally, it is called entrepreneurial competence or traits.

A competence may be defined as underlying characteristics of a person which results in effective and/or superior performance in a job. A job competence is an underlying characteristic of a person in that it may be motive, traits, and skills, aspect of one’s self-image or a body of knowledge which one uses.

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Thus, success of an entrepreneur is governed by entrepreneurial competencies. If he has all these competencies, he can be expected to achieve his entrepreneurial goals.

Entrepreneurial competencies and traits are as follows:

  1. Body of Knowledge
  2. Set of Skills
  3. Cluster of Appropriate Motives/Traits

1. Body of Knowledge:

Innovation is possible only through knowledge. The inventor or originator of the idea that led to the knowledge or vision of something new; the artist of creative endeavour. Inventors include those who identify new technological processes, new forms of plant life and new designs. Thus, inventions deal with new processes, or new technical knowledge. In a simple way, knowledge means collections of information and retention of facts that an individual stores in some parts of his brain.

Creative process provides imaginative people, geminate ideas, nurture them and develop them successfully. This type of idea has a value. However, it must be proven useful or be marketable and to achieve either status or achievement, must be developed. But innovation is the development process which translates an idea into an application. It requires persistence in analytically working out the details of product design or service, to develop marketing, obtain finances and plan operations.

2. Set of Skills:

Skill is the ability to demonstrate a system and sequence of behaviour that are functionally related to attaining a performance or goal. An entrepreneur is required to have certain skills and these skills also constitute his leadership qualities.

These skills are as follows:

a. Anticipatory Skills:

Foresight into a constantly changing environment;

b. Visioning Skills:

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The use of persuasion and example to induce a group to act in accordance with the leader’s purposes or the shared purposes of a larger group;

c. Value Congruence Skills:

The need to be in touch with employee’s economic, safety, psychological, spiritual, sexual, aesthetic and physical needs in order to engage people on the basis of shared motives, values and goals;

d. Empowerment Skills:

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The willingness to share power and to do so effectively; and

e. Self-understanding Skills:

Introspective or self under skills as well as framework within which leaders understand both their own needs and goals and those of their employees.

In practice, an entrepreneur who pursues the idea, planning its application, acquiring resources and establishing its market through persistence, planning, organising and leadership needs above skills. With the help of these skills, an entrepreneur is expected to perform well in his entrepreneurial behaviour.

3. Cluster of Motives and Traits:

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Motives deal with recurrent concern for a goal, state or condition appearing in fantasy, which drives, directs and selects behaviour of the individual. Actually motive represents thought related to a particular goal, state. McClelland opined that “need achievement” is a social motive to excel that tends to characterise successful entrepreneurs especially when reinforced by cultural factors.

According to Paul Wilken, “entrepreneurship becomes the link between need achievement and economic growth. Thus, the need for achievement is the guiding force behind entrepreneurial activities. It is the desire to do well and it motivates the people to undertake innovative activities.”

The trait may be defined as a dispositional or characteristic way in which the person responds to an equivalent set of stimuli. These responses represent intelligence, charisma, decisiveness, enthusiasm, strength, bravery, integrity and self-confidence. Thus, traits are an individual’s personal characteristics.

Traits are contents of leadership qualities. So an effective leader is one who possesses intelligence, alertness to the needs of others, understanding of the task, good communication skills, initiative and persistence in dealing with the problems. It is important to note that personal elements that govern leadership ability are intelligence, self-confidence, the drive to accept responsibility, good communication skills and education.

In this way, entrepreneurs are required to have certain traits. These traits are necessary for leadership qualities expected from an entrepreneur. An entrepreneur should be – (a) adaptable to situations, (b) alert to social environment, (c) ambitious and achievement oriented, (d) assertive, (e) cooperative, (f) decisive, (g) dependable, (h) dominant (desire to influence others), (i) energetic (high activity level); persistent, (j) self-confident, (k) tolerant of stress and (l) willing to assume responsibility.

Thus, for achieving success in his entrepreneurial behaviour, an entrepreneur is required to have entrepreneurial competencies and these consist of a set of knowledge, skills, motives and traits.


Developing Entrepreneurial Competencies

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The competency results in superior performance. This is exhibited by one’s distinct behaviour in different situations. The popular Kakinada experience conducted by McClelland and winter (1969) has proved beyond doubt that entrepreneurial competency can be injected and developed in human minds through proper education and training. Competency finds expression in human behaviour.

How to develop and sharpen the entrepreneurial competency is suggested in the following method or procedure – 

1. Competency Identification and Recognition:

Acquisition of a new behaviour like entrepreneurial behaviour begins with understanding, identifying and recognizing what entrepreneurial behaviour means. In other words, the first step involved in developing entrepreneurial competency is first to identify and recognize the set of competencies required to effectively behave like an entrepreneur.

2. Competency Assessment:

Once the set of competencies is identified and recognized to behave like an entrepreneur, the next step is now to see what entrepreneurial competencies the person actually possesses. In other words, the actual competencies possessed by an entrepreneur are examined against the required set of competencies to effectively behave or act like an entrepreneur.

Where one stands with respect to a set of required competencies to act like an entrepreneur or what is the level of one’s competence can be ascertained by asking the relevant questions to a competence.

3. Competency Mapping:

Now, the actual competencies possessed by an entrepreneur are compared with the competencies required to become a successful entrepreneur to ascertain the gap in the entrepreneurial competencies of an entrepreneur. This is called in the human resource training and development lexicon as – ‘Competency Mapping.’ In other words, this is just like ‘training needs identification’ in the case of HR training.

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This is presented as follows:

Competency Mapping:

A popular performance tool used to map the (entrepreneurial) competency is based on the “Skill to Do / Will to Do” chart. “Skill to Do” refers to the entrepreneur’s / individual’s ability to do the job and to Do’ refers to the entrepreneur’s individual’s desire or motivation to do the job.

In other words, the ‘Ability to Do / No Ability to Do’ dimension of this comes within the purview of the ‘Entrepreneurial Competence’ and the “Will to Do /No Will to Do’ dimension comes within the purview of the ‘Entrepreneurial Commitment.’

These four situations mean the following:

a. Ability to Do/Will to Do:

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Among all four situations, this is the ideal one. The entrepreneur is fully able, i.e., qualified and is performing his job as designed and desired. He is supposed to be a star or ideal performer as an entrepreneur.

b. No Ability to Do/Will to Do:

In this situation, the entrepreneur is putting out his efforts to perform the job, but is not getting the desired results out of his efforts. It means he is lacking ability or skill to perform the job. Thus, it implies that the entrepreneur needs training, or say, ‘competency building.’

c. Ability to Do/No Will to Do:

Here, the entrepreneur is qualified or possesses the ability to do his job but is not willing to perform the same. This implies the lack of desire or motivation. Thus, the entrepreneur needs to be motivated to perform his job.

d. No Ability to Do/No Will to Do:

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The entrepreneur has deficiency in both ability and will (motivation). In a sense, he is just like deadwood and his entrepreneurial job is in jeopardy. Thus, the entrepreneur either needs to continue like this or disappear from the entrepreneurial role.

4. Development Intervention:

After understanding, internalising and practising a particular behaviour or competence, one needs to make an introspection of the same in order to sharpen and strengthen one’s competency. This is called ‘feedback’.

In simple terms, feedback means to know the strengths and weaknesses of one’s new behaviour. This helps one to know how the new behaviour has been rewarding. This enables one to sustain or give up the exhibition of a particular behaviour or competence in his future life.

5. Gaining First-Hand Knowledge about Competencies:

Various competencies cannot be cultivated without clearly understanding their meaning, significance and relevance. An earnest attempt must be made to understand at length the various competencies which are required for the efficient performance of the assigned task.

6. Competency Recognition:

An individual’s behaviour or performance depends upon the competencies he possesses. Therefore in order to get desired behaviour we should be in a position to know as to what are the competencies required in the individuals to perform in a particular manner. Under this step an effort is made to recognise the competencies.

7. Self-Assessment:

After getting a clear cut idea about the competencies required for a particular type of behaviour, it is for the entrepreneur to see as to what extent he possesses these competencies and to what extent he is employing these competencies for achieving the desired goal.

8. Comparison of Competencies:

The next step is to compare individual competencies with the competencies required for the desired performance. Wherever we find deficiencies an earnest attempt is made to find out the reasons for the same.

9. Developing Competencies and Feedback:

Once it is realised that an individual does not possess a particular competency required for a particular type of behaviour, the next step will be to develop this competency. Assistance from various behavioural scientists may be taken for devising out ways and means for developing the required competency. In order to ensure that the required competency becomes part of the individual’s behaviour, he is asked to practise the needed competency repeatedly.

Lastly an attempt is made to know as to what extent change in individual behaviour has taken place due to acquiring of the requisite competency and to what extent it has been useful. It is through continuous application that one can ensure that the desired competency becomes part of his habit or personality.

10. Motivation:

If the entrepreneur is to succeed and build an effective organisation to excel in global competitiveness, he should be motivated as well as motivate the team. “The ability to keep yourself and your team motivated is very important because it has a direct impact on individual and organisational productivity,” says Edsil Coutinho who runs a logistical supply company and manages about 1000 people.

“For example, there are times when you need people to put in long hours, often without the promise of a reward. During such times, it is important to keep them motivated. Even if the situation is bleak, the leader should take it upon oneself to motivate others and see the bright side of the problem.”


Identification of Entrepreneurial Competencies

Entrepreneurship Development Institute of India (EDI) conducted a study under the guidance of David C. McClelland, a reputed behavioural scientist, in three countries, namely, India, Malawi and Ecuador. It was found out that possession of certain competencies or abilities results in superior performance. An entrepreneur may possess certain competencies and at the same time it is possible to develop these through training, experience and guidance.

Various competencies required for superior performance by the entrepreneurs identified during the studyare:

1. Initiative:

It is an inner urge in an individual to do or initiate something. These are a popular saying, ‘Well begun is half done’. It is the entrepreneur who takes the first move towards setting up an enterprise. Most of the innovators have got this urge to do something different. Entrepreneur basically is an innovator who carries out new combinations to initiate and accelerate the process of economic development.

2. Looking for Opportunity:

An entrepreneur is always on the lookout or searching for opportunity and is ready to exploit it in the best interests of his enterprise.

3. Persistence:

An entrepreneur is never disheartened by failures. He follows Try-Try Again for overcoming the obstacles that come in the way of achieving goals.

4. Information Seeker:

A successful entrepreneur always keeps his eyes and ears open and is receptive to new ideas which can help in realising his goals. He is ready to consult experts for their expert advice.

5. Concern for High Quality:

Successful entrepreneurs do not believe in moderate or average performance. They set high quality standards for themselves and then put in their best for achieving these standards. They believe in excellence, which is reflected in everything they do.

6. Commitment: 

Top performers are prepared to make all sacrifices for honouring the commitments they have made. Whatever they commit, they take it as a moral binding for honouring their commitments, irrespective of the costs involved.

7. Concern for Efficiency:

Top performers are always keen to devise new methods aimed at promoting efficiency. They are keen to evolve and try new methods aimed at making working easier, simpler, better and economical.

8. Systematic Planning:

Successful entrepreneurs evolve a future course of action keeping in mind the goals to be realised. They believe in developing relevant and realistic plans and ensure proper execution of the same in their pursuit of attaining their goals.

9. Problem Solving:

A successful entrepreneur takes each problem as a challenge and puts in best for finding out the most appropriate solution for the same. He will first of all understand the problem and then evolve appropriate strategy dealing with the same.

10. Self-Confidence:

Entrepreneurs are not cowed down by difficulties as they believe in their own abilities and strengths. They have full faith in their knowledge, skill and competence and are not worried about future uncertainties.

11. Assertiveness:

An assertive person knows what to say, when to say, how to say and whom to say. He believes in his abilities and ensures that others fall in line with his thinking, aimed at promoting the interests of the organisation.

12. Persuasiveness:

A successful entrepreneur through his sound arguments and logical reasoning is in position to convince others to do the work the way he wants them to do. It is not the physical, but intellectual force he will use for convincing others.

13. Effective Strategist:

A successful entrepreneur possesses the ability to evolve relevant strategy, aimed at safeguarding or promoting organisation’s interests. Strategy may be with respect to facing future uncertainties or challenges posed by competitors.

14. Effective Monitoring:

Entrepreneurs ensure that everything is carried out in their organisations as per their wishes. They ensure regular monitoring of the working so that the goals of the organisation are achieved in the best possible manner.

15. Concern for Employees Welfare:

Future of the organisation depends on its employees. If the employees are dedicated, committed and loyal, the organisation is bound to perform well. A successful entrepreneur tries to promote the organisation’s interest through promotion of the interests of the workers. He takes personal interest in solving problems confronting workers and generates the feeling that there is independence of the interest of workers and the management.

Types of Entrepreneurial Competencies

The type of entrepreneurial competencies are as follows:

1. Personal Entrepreneurial Competencies:

It is the personal characteristics of an individual who possesses to perform the task effectively and efficiently.

Personal entrepreneurial competencies include the following:

a.  Initiative:

The entrepreneur should be able to take actions that go beyond his job requirements and to act faster. He is always ahead of others and able to become a leader in the field of business. He does things before being asked or compelled by the situation and acts to extend the business into new areas, products or services.

b. Sees and Acts on Opportunities:

An entrepreneur always looks for and takes action on opportunities. He sees and acts on new business opportunities and seizes unusual opportunities to obtain financing, equipment, land, work space or assistance.

c. Persistence:

An entrepreneur is able to make repeated efforts or to take different actions to overcome an obstacle that gets in the way of reaching goals. An entrepreneur takes repeated or different actions to overcome an obstacle and takes action in the face of a significant obstacle.

d. Information Seeking:

An entrepreneur is able to take action on how to seek information to help achieve business objectives or clarify business problems. They do personal research on how to provide a product or service. They seek information or ask questions to clarify what is wanted or needed. They personally undertake research and use contacts or information networks to obtain useful information.

e. Concern for High Quality of Work:

An entrepreneur acts to do things that meet certain standards of excellence that gives him greater satisfaction. An entrepreneur states a desire to produce or sell a top or better quality product or service. They compare their own work or their own company’s work favourably to that of others.

f. Commitment to Work Contract:

An entrepreneur places the highest priority on getting a job completed. They make a personal sacrifice or take extraordinary effort to complete a job. They accept full responsibility for problems in completing a job for others and express concern for satisfying the customer.

g. Efficiency Orientation:

A successful entrepreneur always finds ways to do things faster or with fewer resources or at a lower cost. They look for or find ways to do things faster or at less cost. An entrepreneur uses information or business tools to improve efficiency. He expresses concern about costs vs. benefits of some improvement, change or course of action.

h. Systematic Planning:

An entrepreneur develops and uses logical, step-by-step plans to reach goals. They plan by breaking a large task into subtasks and developing plans, then anticipate obstacles and evaluate alternatives. They take a logical and systematic approach to activities.

i.  Problem Solving:

Entrepreneurs identify new and potentially unique ideas to achieve his goals. They generate new ideas or innovative solutions to solve problems and they take alternative strategies to solve the problems.

j.  Self-Confidence:

Entrepreneurs with this competency will have a strong belief in self and own abilities. They express confidence in their own ability to complete a task or meet a challenge. They stick to their own judgement while making decisions.

k.  Assertiveness:

An entrepreneur confronts problems and issues with others directly. Entrepreneurs with this competency vindicate the claim to asset their own rights on others. They demand recognition and discipline for those failing to perform as expected. They assert their own competence, reliability or other personal or company qualities. They also assert strong confidence in their own company’s or organisation’s products or services.

l. Persuasion:

Entrepreneurs with this competency successfully pursue others to perform the activities effectively and efficiently. An entrepreneur can persuade or influence others by mobilising resources, obtaining inputs, organising productions and selling his products or services.

m. Use of Influence Strategies:

An entrepreneur is able to make use of influential people to reach his business goals. Entrepreneurs with this competency influence the environment (Individuals/Institution) for mobilising resources, organising production and selling goods and services to develop business contacts.

n. Monitoring:

Entrepreneurs with this competency normally monitor or surprise all the activities of the concern to ensure that the work is completed by maintaining good quality.

o. Concern for Employee Welfare:

Entrepreneurs with this competency take action to improve the welfare of employees and take positive action in response to the employee’s personal concerns.

2. Venture Initiation and Success Competencies:

In addition to personal competencies, entrepreneurs must also possess the competencies required to launch the enterprise and for its growth and survival.

It is further divided into two categories of competencies:

  1. Enterprise Launching Competencies
  2. Enterprise Management Competencies

a. Enterprise Launching Competencies:

i. Competency to Understand the Nature of Business:

  1. To analyse the personal advantage of owning a small business
  2. To analyse the personal risks of owning a small business
  3. To analyse how to maximise the opportunities and minimise the risks of owning a business

ii. Competency to Determine the Potential as an Entrepreneur:

  1. To consider the personal qualifications and abilities needed to manage your own business
  2. To evaluate their own potentials for decision-making, problem solving and creativity
  3. To determine own potential for management, planning, operations, personnel and public relations

iii. Competency to Develop a Business Plan:

  1. To identify how a business plan helps the entrepreneur
  2. To recognize how a business plan should be organised
  3. To identify and use the mechanisms for developing a business plan

iv. Competency to Obtain Technical Assistance:

  1. To prepare for using technical assistance
  2. To select professional consultants
  3. To work effectively with consultants

v. Competency to Choose the Type of Ownership:

  1. To analyse the type of ownership of business
  2. To follow the steps necessary to file for ownership of the business
  3. To define politics and procedures for a successful multi-owner

vi. Competency to Plan the Market Strategy:

  1. To use goods classification and life cycle analysis as planning tools for marketing
  2. To develop and modify marketing mixes for a business
  3. To use decision making tools and aid in evaluating marketing activities
  4. To evaluate operations to improve decision making about marketing

vii. Competency to Locate the Business:

  1. To analyse customer transportation, access, parking and so forth, i.e., relative to alternative site locations
  2. To complete a location feasibility study for the business
  3. To determine the cost of renovating or improving a site for the business
  4. To prepare an occupancy contrast for the business

viii. Competency to Finance the Business:

  1. To describe the source of information available to help in estimating the financing necessary to start a new business
  2. To determine the finance necessary to start a new business
  3. To prepare a project profit and loss statement and a projected cash flow statement for the new business.
  4. To prepare a loan application package

ix. Competency to Deal with the Business:

  1. To determine the need for legal assistance
  2. To select the provisions that are desired in the lease
  3. To prepare sales contract (such as credit sales or long term sales) that may be utilised in the contracts
  4. To evaluate contracts
  5. To determine the need for protection of ideas and intentions

x. Competency to Comply with Government Regulations:

  1. To appraise the effects of various regulations on the business operations
  2. To acquire the information necessary to comply with the various rules and regulations affecting the business
  3. To develop policies for the business to comply with the Government rules and regulations

b. Enterprise Management Competencies:

i. Competency to Manage the Business:

  1. To plan goals and objectives for the business
  2. To develop a diagram showing the organisational structure for the business
  3. To establish control practices and procedures for the business

ii. Competency to Manage Human Resources:

  1. To plan goals and objectives for the business
  2. To develop a diagram showing the organisational structure for the business
  3. To establish control practices and procedures for the business

iii. Competency to Manage Human Resources:

  1. To write a job description for a position in the business
  2. To develop a training programme online for employees
  3. To develop a list of personnel for employees in the business
  4. To develop an outline for an employee evaluation system
  5. To plan a corrective interview with an employee concerning a selected problem

iv. Competency to Promote the Business:

  1. To create a long-term promotional plan
  2. To describe the techniques used to prepare advertising and promotion
  3. To analyse competitive promotional activities
  4. To evaluate promotional effectiveness
  5. To plan a community relations programme

v. Competency to Manage Sales Efforts:

  1. To develop a sales plan for the business
  2. To develop policies and procedures for serving the customers
  3. To develop a plan for training and motivating sales people

vi. Competency to Keep Business Records:

  1. To determine who will keep the books for the business and how they will be maintained
  2. To describe double-entry bookkeeping
  3. Select the types of journals and ledgers that you will use in the business
  4. To evaluate the business records
  5. To identify how a micro-computer may be used to keep the business records

vii. Competency to Manage the Finances:

  1. To explain the importance of cash flow management
  2. To identify financial control procedures
  3. To describe how to find cash flow patterns
  4. To analyse trouble spots in financial management
  5. To describe how to prepare an owner’s equity financial statement
  6. To analyse financial management ratios applicable to a small business
  7. To identify the components of the break -even point problem
  8. To review microcomputer applications for financial management

viii. Competency to Manage Customer Credit and Collection:

  1. To analyse the legal rights and resources of credit guarantors
  2. To develop a series of credit collection reminders and the follow up activities
  3. To develop various credit and collection policies
  4. To prepare a credit promotion plan
  5. To discuss information resources and systems that apply to credit and collection procedures

ix. Competency to Protect the Business:

  1. To prepare policies for the firm that will help minimise losses due to employee theft, vendor theft, bad cheques, shoplifting, robbery, injury or product liability
  2. To determine the kinds, amounts and costs of insurance needed by the firm

Entrepreneurial Competencies

Let us examine the 13 entrepreneurial competencies identified and also see what they mean:

1. Initiative:

When do we say that a person has initiative? When he/she takes action that goes beyond the job requirement or the demands of the situation. He/she does things before being asked or forced to by circumstances, and acts to develop the business by entry into new areas, products or services. Most successful entrepreneurs show this competence in some form or the other. They take decisions on their own to launch their enterprise or to expand and grow.

2. Seeking and Acting on Opportunities:

A person seeks and acts on opportunities for either business or personal growth or seizes unusual opportunities to obtain finance, equipment, land, work space or assistance.

3. Persistence:

A person takes repeated action to overcome obstacles that get in the way of reaching goals. This is a very important competence. As an entrepreneur, your path may not be smooth, you might face difficulties, but you have to develop the qualities of a spider and carry on without getting disheartened. And success will finally be yours.

4. Information Seeking:

A person takes action on his own to get information to help reach objectives or clarify and solve problems. A person does research on how to provide a product or service, consults experts for business or technical advice, seeks information on what is needed, and uses contacts or information networks to obtain information.

When you set out to establish your own enterprise, you will not know everything. You will have to acquire knowledge and gather information from elsewhere. You will have to take help from experts, and refer to books and journals.

So, once you have set up your industry and established yourself, do not sit back and relax; be up to date on information about the line of your choice.

5. Concern for High Quality of Work:

Act to do things that meet or beat existing standards for excellence. Such persons always have a desire to produce work of high quality and to favourably compare one’s own work with that of others. This would help you withstand the competition, create or expand your market, and give you a sense of satisfaction and achievement.

6. Commitment to Work Contract:

Place the highest priority on getting a job completed, make a personal sacrifice or extend extraordinary effort to complete a job, or accept full responsibility for problems in completing a job for others and pitch in with workers or work in their place to get the job done and express a concern for satisfying the customer.

A successful entrepreneur not only provides quality goods and keeps up to date on information about his/her product but he/she is also particular about keeping to the time schedule for delivery and satisfying a customer. He/she would go to any lengths to make required efforts to -complete work on time.

7. Efficiency Orientation:

Find ways to do things faster or with fewer resources or at a lower cost. Such a person looks for ways to reduce costs and time, uses information on business tools to improve efficiency and expresses concern about costs against benefits of any improvement or change.

It is not enough merely to manufacture and sell. A successful entrepreneur always thinks of ways in which he/she can improve the product or service, innovate and reduce costs wherever he/she can. That is an orientation to efficiency.

8. Systematic Planning:

Develop and use logical, step by step plans to reach goals. You must plan by breaking up a large task into sub-tasks, develop plans that anticipate obstacles, evaluate alternatives and most importantly, take a logical and systematic approach to activities.

When you have set up or are in the process of setting up your venture, if you plan everything systematically and go step by step, half the battle is won. Not that there would not be any difficulties, but your planning will enable you to deal with them.

9. Problem-Solving:

Identify new and potentially unique ideas to reach goals. Switch to an alternative strategy to reach a goal if required, generate new ideas or innovative solutions. Everyone faces problems in life, more so if you happen to be an entrepreneur. It is important that as an entrepreneur you have a problem solving attitude and not a problem avoiding one. Problems are bound to occur during the life of your enterprise, so if you have or develop this competency your enterprise will run smoothly.

We are not saying that you have to resort to such means to solve a problem, but you have to bear in mind that you should be a problem-solver—if you are not, develop this capacity in yourself.

10. Self-Confidence:

Have a strong belief in self and own abilities. Express confidence in your own ability to complete a task or meet a challenge. Stick with your own judgement in the face of opposition or initial lack of success, or when you do something which you find risky.

If you have confidence in yourself and your abilities, you can succeed in whatever you do. When you take up a task and you have the confidence that you are capable of doing it well, you can accomplish it in a much better fashion.

Do we need an example here? Every successful person has self-confidence. You have to believe in yourself in your ability to do anything that you put your mind to.

11. Assertiveness:

Confront problems with others directly, tell others what they have to do and discipline those failing to perform as expected. Assertiveness should not be confused with aggressiveness. Aggression can be direct or indirect, honest or dishonest—but it always communicates an impression of superiority and disrespect, while assertive behaviour is pro-active, direct and honest.

It communicates an impression of self-respect and respect for others. Such behaviour leads to success without retaliation or vengefulness by someone rubbed the wrong way, and encourages honest, open relationships.

12. Persuasion:

Successfully persuade others. An entrepreneur is said to be persuasive when he/she can convince someone to buy a product or service, provide financing or do something that he/she would like that person to do.

Persuasive entrepreneurs assert their own and their company’s competence and qualities. If you, as an entrepreneur, cannot or do not convince others about the viability of your product or products or your own capabilities, how can you be successful? Possessing this competence is, therefore, very important for you. This competence is also linked to self-confidence. Only if you have self-confidence can you persuade or convince others and get your work done.

13. Use of Influence Strategies:

Use a variety of strategies to influence others. Such an entrepreneur acts to develop business contacts, uses influential people to accomplish his/her own objectives, and limits the information given to others.


Steps to Develop Entrepreneurial Competencies

Following steps are involved in developing the entrepreneurial competencies:

1. Recognizing Process:

Entrepreneurial behaviour starts with understanding and recognition of the fact that in which area potential behavior is going to be noteworthy. Specific competencies are meant for innovative behavior and that is why the recognition process should give specific competencies.

2. Process of Self-Assessment:

It deals with identifying the specific competencies among the potential candidates for entrepreneurship. It is just like identifying a fact—does one possess a given competence and if so how frequently one exhibits the same in one’s day-to-day operational behaviour.

3. Process of Practice:

It covers the desired framework to what extent a potential candidate for entrepreneurship lacks certain competencies. But being interested in undertaking entrepreneurial behaviour he would like to acquire these competencies and strengthen others. Entrepreneurial development programmes provide help in strengthening this process.

4. Feedback Process:

It relates with appraisal or seeking information about the newly acquired behaviour. It also deals with the introspection process to what extent new behaviour or act of exhibiting a competence has been beneficial.

Thus, there are different types of competencies required for developing entrepreneurship. To become a successful entrepreneur, it is necessary for him to have those competencies or leadership qualities like innovativeness, initiative, risk-taking personality, sensitivity to the environment, and sense of work, commitment and decisiveness.

Personal Entrepreneurial Competencies

Self-competence or personal competencies, which involves the interrelationship between self-perception of personal worth and efficacy, is an important component of healthy development during adolescence. All teens, regardless of their physical challenges and cognitive impairments, are capable of developing and expressing some degree of self-competence.

The key components of this self-competence are self-esteem, self-determination and successful coping. Nursing interventions aimed at promoting these components will contribute to the adolescent’s self-competence.

When working with adolescents with Down syndrome, the nurse can employ a variety of approaches to help the teen and family identify and maximise personal strengths and adaptive skills.

Some of the most successful approaches include the following:

  1. Provide opportunities for the teen to attempt new behaviours that build on their individual capabilities
  2. Facilitate access to information that the teen can use for self-exploration and informed decision-making
  3. Promote the acquisition and application of coping, social, and task-related skills
  4. Encourage the youth to select goals that are moderately challenging, with a reasonable chance of success
  5. Provide opportunities for systematic training in problem-solving skills, and encourage the application of these skills in daily living
  6. Consider assertiveness training, which may include clear communication and managing other’s resistance
  7. Promote the development of self-advocacy skills, which include knowledge of personal rights and responsibilities
  8. Offer training and practice in negotiating skills
  9. Encourage the use of positive self-talk to shape the adolescent’s behaviour
  10. Facilitate the teen’s ability to self-monitor accomplishments and positive experiences
  11. Provide opportunities to learn frustration management
  12. Educate the teen about appropriate areas of medical self-care

Identifying Self-Competencies

While there are many competencies that enable effective self-management (excellent communication skills, solid teamwork, good judgement), there are many other, less obvious competencies that impact one’s ability to navigate and perform at a high level in a self-managed ecosystem.

Here are five candidates for consideration:

1. Taking Initiative:

This characteristic is expressly called for in the Morning Star Colleague Principles. It’s very hard to deliver constructive feedback to colleagues or cause positive change in processes without a willingness to take the initiative to do so. Taking initiative includes the willingness and ability to speak up when necessary.

2. Tolerance for Ambiguity:

Self-management can be messy as new colleagues meet new people, engage with new processes and learn a new way of working. Negotiating a Colleague Letter of Understanding (CLOU) that clearly communicates one’s mission, process stewardships and performance metrics with affected stakeholders takes time and effort. Choices must be made regarding what requests to make of other colleagues and the timing and scope of those requests. Self-management is never as clear-cut as just going up to the boss with a comment or complaint.

3. Consciousness:

It takes real effort to locate the energy needed to pursue one’s personal commercial mission consistently, every day. It is akin to the energy that entrepreneurs use to create entirely new enterprises out of ideas. Consciousness gives rise to awareness and presence and is the source of confidence in one’s ability to get things done even in the face of adversity. Awareness goes right to the heart of the Morning Star Colleague Principles understanding one’s Rings of Responsibility requires a clear scope of awareness, especially in the primary ring.

4. Contribution Mindset:

Peter Drucker talked about a contribution mindset in his 1966 book, The Effective Executive. A half-century later, that mindset applies to everyone who wants to be an effective self-manager in a self-managed enterprise. This competency is referenced in the Morning Star Colleague Principles, which create an affirmative obligation for individuals to share relevant information with colleagues even when not expressly requested.

5. Low Power Distance Sensitivity:

Power distance refers to the concept of deferring to individuals perceived to have more power than oneself. In a self-managed environment (where collaboration is highly valued), there is an unofficial hierarchy of credibility, which springs from experience, trust, communication and a host of other factors.

This is not the same thing as a hierarchy of power based on command authority or control of others. Effective self-managers will find ways to express themselves to anyone in the organisation and will listen to anyone and everyone who wishes to talk with them. To cut off colleagues based on perceived status is to cut off information, the lifeblood of a self-managed organisation. Communication is everything.


Need of Entrepreneurial Competencies for Successful Business

Becoming an entrepreneur for any person is not an easy task. If you’ve determined that you do not want to work in a corporation and be your own boss. As you start preparing how to start your own business, you start listing down what you want to do and what you can do. You want to do a little bit of everything – for your business. You do market research, product and service planning, Web design, and writing, with five years experience in legal and administrative support. But then, you think, “What skills are required to succeed as an entrepreneur?”

If you want to start a business, you will need a large array of entrepreneurial skills to succeed in today’s competitive market. You must have multiple skills to be an entrepreneur. You must possess basic skills necessary to enable you to start, build up, finance and market your own business. There are a number of qualities and skills you need to have, including marketing skills, management skills and personal competence.

Entrepreneurship skill is a primary need for the establishment of any kind of business activities. If a person has developed such skill he can become an Entrepreneur. Every entrepreneur likes to see himself as a successful businessman. But it is up to him how much he is capable of taking the risk. Whether he is ready to face all efforts and challenges that come in his way?

Entrepreneurs must have all the required qualities that define them as a successful businessman. If the entrepreneurs will lag in those traits then they have to suffer in any area of their business where they lag the required trait. Definitely it is not possible for any person to have all the entrepreneurial qualities, no entrepreneurs are complete.

There is a difference between two entrepreneurs. That is why one entrepreneur touches the heights of the business, whereas others just run the normal business. The required skills of the entrepreneurs are always in connection with the personality traits. The personality traits have a greater influence on entrepreneurship.

Entrepreneurial competence is required for performing the task efficiently and effectively. It is the determination and passion of the person. It demonstrates the keenness of the entrepreneurs how they interact with the business situation? How do they overcome the problem? Whether they are energetic or not? Competence gives the entrepreneurs all the required qualities to drive the business.

If the entrepreneurs do not have competency then they will never overcome the problems, face the challenge and ultimately the whole business will come down. Competence is responsible for business growth. It may be skill, knowledge, motivation, quality of personality and interest. As per the research study of entrepreneurship, some major entrepreneurial competencies are very much required for successful entrepreneurship.

For example he must have intelligence by this only he will come up with new techniques or new ideas to run the business. He must have knowledge of the business without which he cannot progress the business. Their lack of knowledge will make him dumb.

Successful entrepreneur is always capable of using his strengths to grab the opportunities. He should have that much smartness also. They use all their intelligence to catch the opportunities. These opportunities may be related to personal growth, new products or business. A successful entrepreneur is always active and all his actions should be faster than the requirements. They quickly react to their ideas. It may be job order or demand by the situation or expansion of business to the new location or launching the new products, adopting new technology or introduction of new brand of existing product or introducing a new product.

A real entrepreneur is ready to face all challenges. He never gives-up. He thinks logically with his mind. He thinks from a profit perspective. He is not a lazy one, and does not discourage himself from failure. He is ready to repeat the same action ‘n’ number of times to achieve the goal.

Collecting required information is also a skill entrepreneur is ready to visit any place or meet specialists or he has the courage to conduct personal research related to his business and demand. Individual businessmen should be concerned with the quality of their actions. It may be quality of production or quality of service or quality of performance or job quality which is one of the major requirements for the successfulness of the business.

Committed entrepreneur is concerned with the completion of a job. Entrepreneur is an owner of a business. They know how to complete the task within the deadline. They are very hard workers. They take all the efforts to complete the work within the deadline. They have a great respect for time.

To sustain the orders or demand, they should do hard work to finish the task within a time frame. The entrepreneurs are full of motivation. They are motivated for many things. They should be able to motivate his employees regarding the progress of business. Entrepreneurship is always opposite to bureaucratic type behaviour.

Utilising all available resources for the completion of job within time and required quality and also it depends on the efficiency of the system. They know the proper utilisation of the resources to make a product. They never waste their resources. They take complete benefits of their resources.

Planning is the first most important requirement. Without planning it is not possible to run the business also. There should be a systematic plan with subgoals in order to reach the goal. Goal setting is an important task of the business. The entrepreneurs are very clear about their goals. They continuously work hard, work, take risks and accept challenges to achieve their goals. They are focused on their goals. Plan guides entrepreneurs to move in the right path.

It also helps to anticipate future threats and entrepreneurs can develop alternatives to face the difficult situation. Problems in business may arise any moment. But it is a challenge to the skill and experience of the entrepreneur. He should identify new ideas which are potential to face the situation for achieving the goal and should discover innovative ideas for solving common problems.

Person without self-confidence cannot do anything in this world. When a person wishes to be recognized as an entrepreneur he must have confidence in himself, his ability and skill. We can measure one’s self confidence in how much he is ready to take the risk.

Entrepreneurs should always be assertive. While dealing with customers, suppliers or people connected with his business. He should be assertive to his employees. While delegating the responsibilities and showing the courage to confront to bring discipline in the world environment.

Entrepreneur’s convincing power has an important role in the growth of the business. Convincing skill is connected to marketing strategy. Entrepreneurs should be able to convince customers to buy the product and able to convince finance providers to easily obtain financial assistance and suppliers for supplying the product at a reasonable rate.

Outside influencers are having their own role in the development of the business. These influencers may be agents, friends, competitive firms, government authorities. Entrepreneurs should develop good business contacts and should be able to use agents and friends for the accomplishment of business goals. Instead of depending on employees, for entrepreneurs it is better to personally supervise the business. His presence in the workplace is important which helps to avoid fraud and other problems due to the ignorance of employees.

Committed honesty and hardworking employees are really assets of the organisation. If the business is in a good profitable position, the entrepreneur should not hesitate to take the actions to introduce various welfare schemes for the welfare of his employees. It will increase employee morale and loyalty.

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