IS PASSION ALONE ENOUGH?

This is the time of the year when individuals and businesses are reviewing and setting new goals for the year ahead. If you are a business owner looking to embark on a significant growth trajectory in 2018, then passion is critical for engaging in entrepreneurial activities. Both individual and environmental conditions determine the extent of engagement in entrepreneurial activity and one of the individual conditions is passion. Is Passion: The Secret to Finding A Business Idea That Works? Can passion help small businesses survive and thrive?

Entrepreneurial Passion

Entrepreneurial passion is the intense positive feelings experienced by an entrepreneur when he/she engages in entrepreneurial activities associated with roles that are meaningful for their self-identity as an entrepreneur. Passion is important in entrepreneurial engagement because it can fuel motivation, enhance mental activity, and provide meaning to everyday work – particularly for small businesses that don’t want to live small and die small. A very common error a small business owner would make is falling in love with an idea, jumping to conclusions and over-enthusiasm, while being completely unaware of possible errors that would lead to inconsistent and inefficient execution. These would only result in disappointment, failure or losing interest in the idea.
Entrepreneurship involves the discovery, evaluation, and exploitation of opportunities by individuals. Passion is a means to achieve high levels of performance and to overcome the fear of change. A passionate business owner or manager who demonstrates a tenacious pursuit of goals can inspire stakeholders to support their ventures.
Though entrepreneurship provides small businesses with the ability to discover new business opportunities, passion alone may not be enough to help small businesses survive and continue thriving.

Innovative Business Ideas Most small businesses start small, live small and would die small without any significant growth because they are unable to influence the market with innovative business ideas. They lack the passion for searching for new business opportunities in new markets, establishing new businesses, and developing already existing ones. The reason being that, despite the advantages that innovation offers small businesses, they cannot succeed without adequate financial backing, marketing and production competencies. These are frequently the types of resources that small businesses lack. While the larger competitors can have considerable influence over the market place and over the smaller business competitors, the smaller businesses with limited resources are likely to have very limited influence in return. In addition, the majority of small businesses are imitative in mature industries, serving local markets.
The passion for entrepreneurial activities, such as exploring new market ideas, sourcing founding capital, and establishing and developing new products, can lead small businesses to become entrepreneurs. The discovery of new opportunities helps to differentiate a business from others because not all owners/managers of small businesses are entrepreneurs. However, passion alone will not make owner/managers to engage or be successful at being entrepreneurial. In addition to being passionate and willing to engage in entrepreneurship, owner/managers also require resources (both capital and human) in order to discover, evaluate, and exploit opportunities. The small business owners/managers who are passionate would still require access to resources in order to effectively transfer their passion to actual practice and engage in entrepreneurial activity.

 

Adapted From: Kosa and Mohammed (2017) Uncovering the backings to passion: why do small firm owners/managers engage in entrepreneurship? Journal of Innovation and Entrepreneurship A Systems View Across Time and Space 2017 6:20
https://doi.org/10.1186/s13731-017-0080-1

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Categories: Entrepreneurship and Small Business

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