Ten elements of community entrepreneurship

1.  Have entrepreneurial mindset (open-minded and don't let barriers or perceptions impact on their vision)

2. Are risk takers (not risk averse; have a culture that favours doing something new even if it doesn't work)

3. Turn threats into opportunities (find an opportunity out of adversity; a spark of an idea, however ridiculous it seems to many, will ignite a new venture)

4. Dare to be different (challenge the norm where it limits opportunity)

5.  Embrace failure as an opportunity (if something doesn't work out the first time, they don't lose sight of what they want to achieve; they just readjust the plan)

6.  Are Creative (entrepreneurship is a state of mind; it feeds on creativity; it is not bound by limiting beliefs that shackle others to mediocrity; only by daring to be different can anyone create change; swimming against the mainstream; latch onto dreams and then come up with creative ways to turn those dreams into reality)

7. Are Relationship Builders (they are the "go-between" in the community; acting as change agents; bring together the community to enhance and merge resources to achieve the unthinkable; they are influences who are also open to being influenced by others to increase their knowledge, ideas and credibility)

8.  Are intuitive (their success stems from intuition and imagination; their ideas are based on an unknown, uniting energy that knows no bounds; this goes against the norm for community organisation and groups where personalities can make or break the general direction; draw from a collective to works to achieve goals and creates its own luck)

9.  Show leadership ( they are leaders with a strong sense of justice, definitiveness of decisions and plans, and willing to go little further than most others; they are pay attention to detail and are willing to assume responsibility)

10.  Group focus (entrepreneurship is embedded within the vision, mission, culture, policies and procedures; it is enacted as a primary value so that the organisation will withstand changes of internal leadership) (source: Patricia Grosse, 2016)

3M's success is based around innovation. Some of its innovations include Post-it-notes, Scotch tape, Fabric protector, Thinsulate linings and reflective glass-bead technology used in streetlights. 3M's workplace culture encourages innovation and scientists/technicians are given an unusual degree of freedom and autonomy. This includes 15% of their work time to focus on their own projects. It is interesting Google is following this idea and has increased this time to 20% of work time to be allocated to personal projects. 3M's aim is to have at least a 1/3 of its total sales from products released in the past 5 years. At the same time, 3M realises that innovation is a disorderly process and it can take up to 6000 raw ideas to find 1 that is successful. 3M uses 7 pillars of innovation:

- commitment to research and development (spends 6 percent of revenue on R & D - this was worth $US 1.4 billion in 2008)

- hires good people (staff turnover is under 10%; prefers employing local staff; uses a matrix reporting system; prefers to promote from within; uses a dual ladder system for career development that encourages promotion without necessitating the move to management, ie technical people go up a technical career path that has similar compensation to management positions)

- tolerates mistakes

- has a broader base of technological expertise which encourages cross-pollination of ideas and networking

- rewards/remunerates outstanding work

- continually evaluates and monitors the efficiency of research funding

- spends time with customers to understand their needs (this balances the danger of a stable workforce becoming complacent)

(NB if researchers are denied funding, they can approach other areas of the organisation for funding)

The challenge is to handle never seen-before-problems or issues or questions or situations. It is impossible to equip people with the knowledge to solve them. People need to learn, adapt, search for answers, etc by problem-solving, entrepreneurial/innovative mindset, ie be able to see opportunities that others cannot and to be able to create opportunities that others cannot create: discipline, perseverance, mental strength, etc are also required. They need to have a capacity for hard work, hunger to succeed, high risk appetite, ability to operate under stress, etc
It is claimed the universities are not necessarily the best places to teach entrepreneurialship owing to their size and bureaucracy, risk-aversion culture, lack of entrepreneurial experience, etc

"...surviving and thriving when you have no money left in the bank and the end looks near, is a skill you possess. Taking a small idea and having the courage and guts to build a world-class billion-dollar business is not something you can read in a textbook and copy..."
Jack Delosa as quoted by Tony Featherstone, 2015

"...innovation and entrepreneurship are quintessentially about experimentation, trial and error, and learning in the real world. You can't develop the skills in a classroom..."

Entrepreneurship can be seen as a philosophy or a way of thinking that can be applied across disciplines. Or it can be seen as a set of tools within general management.

"...over the past 20 years, Web technologies have democratised innovation and transport and distribution channels and consumer behaviour. The Web empowers people to easily produce digital goods - music, movies, photos, books - and then share and ship them in ways and on a scale never possible before. The same goes for the world of physical stuff.  You no longer need a big factory, a team of engineers and millions of dollars to take a product from a concept to market..."
Rachel Botsman, 2012

"...atoms are the new bits..."
Chris Anderson as quoted by Rachel Botsman, 2012
In addition it is now possible to bypass the traditional financial finance by crowd sourcing project funding.


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