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Entrepreneurship and intrapreneurship

entrepreneurship, intrapreneurship, management, business, administration, innovation, organization, leading

Entrepreneurship is enjoying a great deal of attention in many countries today. It can be defined as “the process of bringing together creative and innovative ideas and coupling these with management and organizational skills in order to combine people, money and resources to meet an identified need and thereby create wealth.”

The process may be undertaken by one person or a group. Inventors are innovative and creative but not all are able to use management and organizational skills to produce and market goods or services successfully. Creativity and management strengths do not usually reside in one person, so entrepreneurship is often found in groups which combine their strengths.

Self-employment is encouraged by governments and is very popular at present as it creates jobs and aids the economy of a country. Entrepreneurship is often thought to apply mainly to the management of small businesses, but this idea has been extended to also apply to larger organizations and to managers who carry out entrepreneurial roles. Such managers are aware of opportunities and they initiate changes to take full advantage of them.

The term given to someone who has innovative ideas and transforms them to profitable activities within an organizational environment is called an intrapreneur. The entrepreneur, in contrast, does the same outside the organization.The world intrapreneurship is attributed to Gordon Pinchott who founded a school for intrapreneurs to help managers from large corporations to take responsibility for creating innovations and turning ideas into a ‘profitable reality’. In his book, Intrapreneuring, Pinchott suggests that a number of factors are needed to be present for intrapreneurship to flourish in a larger organization. These include giving innovators the opportunity to develop ideas and the freedom and resources to see ideas through. There must also be a tolerance of risk-taking and mistakes.

Not everyone agrees with this approach to entrepreneurship, the reasons being that an entrepreneur is deemed to be an business for themselves and takes risks in initiating change and needs freedom to pursue ideas. None of these can usually be achieved in a large organization. A number of entrepreneurs leave larger companies and set up in business on their own.
Published: 2007-04-10
Author: Martin Hahn

About the author or the publisher
Martin Hahn PhD has received his education and degrees in Europe in organizational/industrial sociology. He grew up in South-East Asia and moved to Europe to get his tertiary education and gain experience in the fields of scientific research, radio journalism, and management consulting.

After living in Europe for 12 years, he moved to South-East again and has worked for the last 12 years as a management consultant, university lecturer, corporate trainer, and international school administrator

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