On Saturday 10th September I conducted a workshop for a group of young people who were about to start their university journey. After the initial presentation, I wanted them to come up with ideas of a new product that they have been dreaming of getting to market.
The ideas varied, but considering that the members of the groups only had about 10 minutes to come up with the ideas, the ideas they came up with varied from a flashing wrist watch to mobile broadband that can be carried on your wrist, a brick making machine that can produce blocks from recycled materials, there is also an idea of a self inflating travel pillows.
It is difficult to know if any of these ideas are commercially viable, but that is not as important as the fact that complete strangers are able to come together to decide or communicate about ideas within a short period of time.
The world is changing so fast and our education system also needs to change so that young people are automatically thinking about what they are going to do rather than expect employment opportunities. The future will be a very different world to the one we are used to and we need to prepare for the future where ideas become a way of making a living.
The right type of education and skills can open opportunities for creating new ideas. One thing that came out of the many sessions that I have been involved in is that the circumstances, the environment, the skills, the education back ground as well personal interest all contribute towards the success of entrepreneurs and what venture they eventually undertake.
Education also provide the opportunity for people of similar ideas to come together in order to pursue their dreams. There are several ideas of students like the founders of Facebook and Google who met at university and started a business based on their common interest. Being an entrepreneur does not necessarily mean that you need to operate in a vacuum or be a lone ranger. Entrepreneurship allows for freedom to converse and turn ideas and models upside down.
But don’t just assume this is all about those with the knowledge to start their own businesses. There are entrepreneurs who work for others, the concept is about those who take risk and are innovative in their approach. They bring new ideas and concepts to the way organisations can be managed or their relationship with their colleagues. Most of the best managers are the ones who facilitate ideas, create environments in which others can bring out better and more innovative ideas. In that case, we have entrepreneurs in every aspect of our lives including the public sectors as well as not for profit organisations.
In short, entrepreneurs write their own legacy, through the drive to make a difference in the way we live.