Looking back over the centuries, entrepreneurship was encouraged, but as we moved into the industrial age and people moved to the cities, we moved from entrepreneurship to employees. Many Europeans, when they migrated to the United States during the 19th and early part of the 20th century, brought their skills with them. In their home countries, they would often put their wares on horse-drawn wagons and go from home to home selling their fruits and vegetables. When they moved to the United States, they used push carts to stand on street corners, or small storefronts, to sell their fruits and vegetables.
Their children, the first generation born in this country, didn’t want to be farmers, therefore, they moved to the city’s and started to work for factories. These factories grew and these workers moved up into management level positions. Then after 25 years, many retired with a retirement party and a gold watch for their years of service. Their children, known as the baby boomer generation, followed their parents into the corporate world, expecting similar opportunities. Towards the end of the 20th century, the corporate world began to change. No longer, were jobs guaranteed for life. But, because there was an unwritten rule of your corporate jobs being a lifetime contract, corporations originally offered buyout packages to their employees in upper management in middle management positions.
We have moved from the industrial age to the information age. This migration occurred, during the 1980s, with the growth of the personal computer and access to the Internet. Now, we have come full circle back to, the small businessman and entrepreneurship. There are no longer guaranteed jobs with the corporation, but, they are a great way to learn the skills you need to run a small business.
What you learn from working in a corporation, on the skills needed to run a business, like good communication. To communicate more effectively, it’s important to understand the different styles of communication.
I use profiles known as the DiSC language. There are four pure styles known as the D, i, S, and C.
D stands for dominance. Someone with a high D behavior pattern puts emphasis on shaping the environment by overcoming opposition to accomplish their results. This person is very strong-willed and has a very controlling behavior. I stands for influence. Someone with a high I behavior pattern puts emphasis on shaping the environment by influencing or persuading others. They are very verbal and talk to everyone. They can even have a meeting in a party environment. S stands for steadiness. Someone with a high S behavior pattern puts emphasis on cooperating with others to carry out the task. They often read the manual of a company, and do everything by the book. The last behavior pattern is known as C. someone with a high C behavior pattern puts emphasis on working conscientiously within existing circumstances to ensure quality and accuracy. They often question everything they need to know all the answers before they make a decision.
It is often imperative that you understand these different behavior patterns because how you communicate across behavior patterns, can determine whether negotiations go smoothly or badly.
Having good leadership skills is another skill that is important in today’s environment. Leadership is necessary for any group or enterprise. You may have one single leader who is capable of performing several leadership roles, or multiple leaders may appear to each handle different leadership functions. Some group members may choose not to lead but are interested in selecting good leaders based on that own feelings and perceptions about leadership. However, not all leaders have formal authority, and some are found in humble positions. What all leaders have in common is that others recognize the value of the contribution and choose to follow them.
Entrepreneurship, is the direction that we are moving towards, simply because more and more people all working from home. With the use of computers and the Internet, we have truly become a global workplace. The millennial generation, have grown up with computers, therefore, their purchasing power has grown exponentially. Because they are comfortable with computers and smartphones, more and more purchases are done online with these devices.
The baby boomer generation is the first generation in the workplace that has to learn the skills to compete in the job market. If they are unwilling to adapt, then they are being left behind.
Finally, statistics show, that every business today, whether a small business or a corporation, need a website open 24/7 to stay in business long-term. This trend will only grow as time goes on. As this trend moves forward, learning the skills of entrepreneurship will only increase. The problem is, and this has been occurring for the past century, education does it encourage entrepreneurship, they only teach students to go to work for the Corporation. Education has to change and incorporate the changing workplace.
My theory is that when you look at different behavioral styles and leadership skills, not everyone is meant to be an entrepreneur. Simply because they are not decision-makers and don’t want to have to take the blame if something goes wrong. They would rather be the employee who does his work and then goes home. With more and more people working from home, you’re even seeing job titles change. There are more virtual assistants, bloggers, website designers, and sales consultants; positions that never existed before the latter part of the 20th century and 21st century.