Thursday, 15 August 2019

Entrepreneurial Taxonomy: Developing Entrepreneurial Skills —by Ikakke Bassey

15 August 2019 

1. Leadership Skill
Leadership is the ability to conceive a vision, lead the vision, and execute the vision. An entrepreneur is one with the ability to conceive a vision within an economic framework. He/she also must be willing to step forward and lead the vision, and must have the courage to strategically execute the vision. This will involve people, resources and finances. All of these categories requires leadership, and it must be provided by the entrepreneur.

2. Communication Skill
The ability to transfer information and intentions to the next person without being misunderstood is good communication skill. It involves interpersonal interaction, persuasion, emotional and social intelligence. An entrepreneur must be able to communicate his/her ideas and vision to his subordinates, investors and customers. Whether you are training your staff or selling your product and services to customers, you need communication skill. It's not just about talking, it's about influencing beliefs and actions.

3. Numeracy Skills
The ability to work with numbers. You don't need to be a mathematician and statistician to make a good entrepreneur. But just knowing what numbers means in business can help you a great deal to avert possible financial pitfalls. Business is a game of numbers. You will have to learn what market size means to business growth and what time means to turnover rate in a business word. 

4. Strategic Skill
Strategy is a plan with precise action(s). You are not strategic if you're still having the same result you should have had normally. A strategy is how firms create, capture and sustain economic value. That is, how you create your product or services, how you communicate it to potential customers, and how you scale with it. 

5. Resource or Economic Skill
How you plan to allocate and manage limited resources in your business is a skill. Economics is a social science that deals with the relationship of man with scarce resources which has alternative uses. An entrepreneur is always thinking about how best to apply financial, material and human resources, and how to create a balance in how these resources impact each other - all in a bit to create economic value.

6. Marketing Skill
Marketing involves Telling - the about your product and services, Attracting - potential customers, developing - the customers and your market share, and Retaining - your customers, product or service quality and brand loyalty. However, there are a lot more that happens in marketing. It involves Research and Development (R&D), Product Design and Development, Conceptualization, Advertising, Promotion, Pricing and Distribution, Customer Relationship Management (CRM). This is heavy duty! Yet, an entrepreneur must be able to work in between all of these components.

7. Problem Solving Skills
The ability to manage conflicts, disagreements, interest and distractions.  An entrepreneur must be able to solve problems associated to his/her business either internally or externally. He/she must be emotionally stable to deal with unforseen and seen circumstances. If the entrepreneur is not emotionally stable, his business/organization will be built on people's temperament.

8. Thinking Skill
An entrepreneur must have the ability to process information and issues correctly to come up with progressive decisions. According to Dr. Alfred Oladapo - a Cerebral Leadership & Creative Intelligence Expert, there are well over seventeen thinking patterns to problem solving and decision making. An entrepreneur must be able to work with at least eight of these.

9. Negotiation Skill
The ability to convince, persuade and influence actions to your advantage while creating a win-win situation for the other party, is a skill that entrepreneurs must have. If you don't know how to negotiate, you will often be the victim in many business transaction. You must learn how to harness you strength during negotiation and speak from that position. 

10. Legal Skill
This is not to make you a lawyer, but you must know what the law says to avert legal pitfalls. Your professional lawyer will do the work, but you should be able to ask legal questions. What laws govern your industry or sector? Entrepreneurs must know a bit of company law, labour laws and contracts, etc.

In conclusion, entrepreneurs who are interested in building sustainable businesses should acquire skills that would enhance their effectiveness. It's not enough to want to do business, you must think longterm if you want to be a stable entrepreneur.

Organizational Expert, Business/ Intellectual Capital Consultant.
Chief Executive/Principal Consultant at SKIL-HUB Leading-edge Ltd.

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