What Kind Of Entrepreneur Are You?

What Kind Of Entrepreneur Are You?

By Dr Omotayo Adegbuyi

The role of entrepreneurship in the developing economies is progressively becoming significant. In developed and some developing nations, the advantages of entrepreneurship have been well recognised as it forms the bedrock of the industrialisation process.

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Entrepreneurship as a field of study has grown fabulously over the past decade in Africa. Entrepreneurship development aids poverty alleviation when employment opportunities are created via new entrepreneurship venture start-up or the growth of existing ones. This eventually lead to increase in social wealth through the emergence of new industries, new technology, new market, new institutional form,  net increase in real productivity,  and increase in income which culminates in higher living standards for the population.

What is entrepreneurship?

The process of seeking out opportunities that are unique in the microenvironment, organizing the resources needed to exploit them and building an organization to maintain the goal-seeking drive that initiated the venture is a normal view of entrepreneurship.

Dr. Omotayo

There is much debate and introspection when it comes to defining an entrepreneur.

Who is an Entrepreneur?

Entrepreneur is an ordinary person with an extra ordinary idea. With the idea, he has the vision on the idea and has passion to pursue the dreams. If he fails, he has the potential to bounce back. An entrepreneur is an individual who creates something of value at a time and place where there was no such thing before. He or she initiates the development of a desirable product or service and then builds an organization to exploit it.

Types of entrepreneur

  1. Start-up entrepreneur: Start-up is an entrepreneurial venture which is typically a newly emerged, fast-growing business that aims to meet a marketplace need by developing a viable business model around innovative product, service, process or a platform. There are four subcategories of start-up entrepreneurs: inventors, the innovator, the marketer and the opportunist.

Inventors define a unique, new concept, invention or methodology. The invention may have been intuitively developed, the consequence of serendipity or the result of hours of application, as with the cold fusion process.

Innovator identifies a new technology or methodology to solve a new or existing problem. He creates solutions from scientific or technical development the goes on to market these in an industry.

Marketer identifies a need in the market place and satisfies it with a product that is newly introduced into the market or one that substitute more efficiently for existing products or services as with trivial pursuit.

Opportunist essentially a broker, an arbitrageur, matches needs with services and a commission.

  1. Joint Venture Entrepreneurs: In this form, entrepreneur takes the risk of introducing an established concept (product or service) into a new environment. An example would be the creation of a new franchise in a strange territory as with such as the opening of McDonald’s in Pushkin square, Moscow, in 1990. The Russia Russian government own owns 51 percent and McDonald’s Canada owns 49 percent. In this case George Chen, the Company’s Canadian president, assumed the entrepreneurial role of introducing an inherently American fast-food service into the then solid, authoritarian soviet society.
  1. Take over entrepreneurs: Many entrepreneurs begin their journey to success by acquiring an existing business. Ted turner, Turner begins his odyssey at 29 years of age by acquiring his father’s bankrupt billboard advertising company in 1969. He parlayed this into a number of radio stations in the Atlanta, Georgia, market as a part of the Turner broadcasting system, which now includes CNN-the international News service.
  1. The Intrepreneur: Another name for intrepreneur is corporate entrepreneur. The role of corporate entrepreneur is to renew the organisation by introducing and promoting innovation that leads to managerial productivity, new productivity, new products, and new activity. Very often this individual is a lone ranger attempting to move the corporation or bureau-racy to advanced position that management has yet to recognize. On the other hand, has more often a venture team builder who creates the environments that bring with it success. The last decade has seen heightened acceptability of the role of the entrepreneurial manager in the corporation. In defining his guidelines for a changing society Peter Drucker notes that “we need men who can build a new structure of entrepreneurship on the meaningful foundations laid these last fifty years”
  2. Serial entrepreneur: An entrepreneur who continuously comes up with new ideas and starts new businesses. As opposed to a typical entrepreneur, who will often come up with an idea, start the company, and then see it through and play an important role in the day to day functioning of the new company, a serial entrepreneur will often come up with the idea and get things started, but then give responsibility to someone else and move on to a new idea and a new venture. In Uganda such entrepreneurs are Patrick Bitature and Omar Ahmed (Mandela). Patrick Bitature is a businessman, entrepreneur and industrialist. Bitature started his business empire with a single company, Simba Telecom, then a retail chain dealership, in MTN air-time. From there he expanded into broadcasting, with the acquisition of Dembe FM radio station, followed by Simba Electronics. He also has interests in insurance, banking, hotels and resorts. Today, his businesses have subsidiaries in Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania and Nigeria.

Omar Ahmed on the other hand owns Mandela Group. His City Tyres is one of the biggest and most successful tyre outlets in the country. His other business includes City Retread, City Oil and Café Javas. Cafes Javas found at City Oil Wandegeya, Nakumatt Shopping Mall and Kampala road have been lauded for their quality food. Mandela’s involvement in his own business and his insistence on quality customer care has contributed highly to his success.

3. Social Entrepreneur: Social entrepreneurship can be defined as “the process of using entrepreneurial and business skills to create innovative approaches to social problems.” Social entrepreneurs seek out business opportunities that create wealth, but also improve society or make a positive impact in communities. He considers himself a social entrepreneur to the extent that all his ventures, beginning with offline and online business, have focused on the double bottom line: financial returns (doing well) and social returns (doing well). A triple bottom line social venture would also deliver healthy environmental returns. In Uganda, example includes some of the serial entrepreneurs mentioned above. These entrepreneurs are both Social and serial in nature.

Conclusion

It must be noted that entrepreneurship is an interdisciplinary pursuit. Entrepreneurial opportunities may arise from various fields, including but not limited to architecture, education, engineering, natural sciences, media, communications and music. Pursuing these opportunities requires building a team with a diverse knowledge base, including finance, management, law, and technology. The question is what kind of entrepreneur are you?

Dr Omotayo Adegbuyi PhD is marketing consultant, author and Entrepreneur

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