How do we lift ourselves out of the current economic situation? We become more entrepreneurial and focus on innovation (notice I did not mention getting in line for a check). Entrepreneurial individuals and continuous innovation are vital components of successful organizations. Therefore, the public and private sectors must develop the entrepreneurial characteristics and actions of individuals with a focus on innovation. Institutions of higher education have an especially important role in the development of entrepreneurial individuals because innovation is and will become an even more essential component of success to employers, employees and business founders in the emerging entrepreneurial economy. Further, educational institutions must become more entrepreneurial themselves in order to complete in an increasingly competitive industry. This requires entrepreneurial leadership.
Research has shown that entrepreneurial individuals, learners, educational institutions and leaders are needed to address the complex global issues associated with the continuously evolving knowledge economy. Entrepreneurs are needed to establish new ventures and to employ others while developing new products, services and solutions. Entrepreneurial individuals, who may or may not start a business, are needed because they are innovators who behave or act in a proactive manner and move organizations forward. In general, entrepreneurial individuals have the ability to recognize and capitalize on opportunities, innovate, take calculated risks, adapt to rapid changes and marshal resources to achieve their goals. Entrepreneurial leaders are the individuals who have the ability to create dynamic, competitive organizations where innovation and change are as common as employee, clientele and stakeholder support.
Entrepreneurs and entrepreneurial individuals are vital components of 21st century communities and organizations because they have the ability to advance themselves, other people, their businesses or places of employment and even the economies and societies in which they live. Therefore, countries, communities and individual organizations as well as educational institutions benefit by developing the entrepreneurial learner and leadership capabilities of individuals.