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Why Should You Consider An MBA In Entrepreneurship?

How exactly does a specialization in 'Entrepreneurship' help those who want to start a venture of their own?

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Entrepreneurship is on the rise worldwide as technological disruption has completely transformed many industries even as barriers to entry become lower for new businesses. Almost anybody, anywhere can start a business with lower investment than in previous generations. Every field is being reimagined and entrepreneurial thinking is sorely needed in EVERY arena including the Government, the start-up and the NGO sectors.

The world is ablaze with new opportunities to solve historically intractable problems in novel ways … brilliantly, quickly and cheaply! As a result, the demand and industry need for professionals - both in the "for profit" and "not for profit" sectors - who have specialized in Entrepreneurship is seeing a noticeable rise.  As people see and face new unsolved problems, novel solutions are emerging that are a fusion of services and New technologies.

Academia has responded to this need by launching programs focused on Entrepreneurship and this is where the debate can sometimes get heated.  Many are of the view that entrepreneurship cannot be taught and as examples they cite the case of those millionaires who made successful careers for themselves without ever stepping foot into a management school.

So, how exactly does a specialization in 'Entrepreneurship' help those who want to start a venture of their own?

The case studies of successful entrepreneurs without formal business education are true but misleading. Multiple studies suggest that only 4% of all entrepreneurial ventures make it to the second year of their business. And those remarkable entrepreneurs who do achieve exceptional success are genuine exceptions and only a few in number despite being highly visible and aspirational for many. The equivalent is that every young footballer today initially aspires to be a Messi or Neymar but very very few come even somewhat close to reaching that pinnacle. However, many harness their inner drive and achieve credible success with dedication, training and both formal/informal exposure to opportunities and inspiring mentors.

Hence the very existence of exceptional entrepreneurs strengthens - not weakens- the case for business school programs centered on catalyzing Entrepreneurship among their students!

What people also tend to ignore is that these exceptional entrepreneurs share traits that are essential for entrepreneurial success.

While exceptional energy, focus, deep motivation, resourcefulness cannot be taught, they can be sharpened, systematized and complemented with other forms of necessary knowledge and experience. Specialization in entrepreneurship can develop and enhance this core spark with exposure to many types of business challenges and provide opportunities to both apply this knowledge and crucially, to succeed and fail in simulated environments. This is the critical learning that can otherwise become difficult for young and aspiring entrepreneurs to obtain in a safe and low risk environment.

Even for those students going to work for corporate organizations, hiring managers show a preference for young leaders who can be agile and think innovatively - not be just another cog in the wheel, who can only follow well defined processes. The business leaders and managers of today need to be prepared to be the 'new charioteers' of the constantly evolving digital world. They must become agile learners, be comfortable in volatile and uncertain competitive situations and rapidly update their strategies and business approaches on the fly. In other words, a management degree in entrepreneurship, will help accelerate even those students who display strong entrepreneurial proclivities.

The youngsters of today have opportunities that were previously unimaginable and they need to be encouraged to "Dare to Dream" and as critically, "Dare to Prepare" themselves for success in their ventures or in life. They need to be curious and brave enough to always question the status quo and raise critical doubts about the way things may be done currently. They need to encouraged to ask "What If " or "Why Not" and enter MBA programs in Entrepreneurship with the beginnings of possible solutions. In turn, this enables the programs to fine tune their capabilities in a comprehensive way and greatly enhance the probability of future entrepreneurial success.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house. Unless otherwise noted, the author is writing in his/her personal capacity. They are not intended and should not be thought to represent official ideas, attitudes, or policies of any agency or institution.


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Dr Shubro Sen

The author is Director of School of Extended Education and Professional Development (SEEPD) and School of Management and Entrepreneurship (SME)at Shiv Nadar University

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