The Sunday Mail
Dr Kudzanai Vere
THE world stands where it is right now as a result of a series of revolutions that took place and such progression is not stopping any time soon. We passed through the agricultural, industrial and technological revolutions. It is now time that we glide into the entrepreneurship revolution.
Producing all that was required for consumption and national growth used to be a game for large businesses. However, the gears are fast shifting to having small global entrepreneurial businesses taking centre stage, leading the entrepreneurship revolution.
One might ask what an entrepreneurship revolution is. It is also proper to have everyone understand it now as it is going to be the buzzword throughout the year 2023 and beyond.
We have all known an entrepreneur as a person who identifies market opportunities and converts them into unique businesses by innovatively configuring resources at their disposal and coming up with solutions to the market in the form of products or services, bearing all the risk and rewards therein.
A revolution, on the other hand, is a sudden, radical and complete change. It can be defined as an activity, process or movement designed to effect fundamental changes in the socioeconomic sphere. Therefore, the entrepreneurship revolution is a radical departure from the big corporates’ way of running business, where decision- making is centralised, red tape is rampant and you need that large industrial setup to produce goods. The entrepreneurship revolution promotes production through entrepreneur-led small global businesses that are more efficient, innovative and productive.
Worldwide production and productivity have since shifted from large corporates to small and medium enterprises. Statistics point to over 70 percent contribution to the gross domestic product of most developing nations coming from these small, micro-managed organisations. Promotion of such a sector will lead to a massive boost in economic activities and national product.
Where do we start from?
The revolution has already started but in a more disorderly fashion. On entrepreneurship, there is every need to be deliberate in decision-making, and strategic action and intention. I have received several calls from high school learners inspired by these weekly entrepreneurship articles. They are really passionate about entrepreneurship and want to be initiated into it and start their journey from there.
We have men and women who call themselves entrepreneurs out there. However, they are mere businesspeople for they fall short of the traits and experience of real entrepreneurs.
That alone tells you a story of masses wanting to become entrepreneurs but there is no adequate and deliberate infrastructure to lean and leverage on.
A story is told of this local university offering an agricultural entrepreneurship master’s degree programme, yet the students go up to graduation without even having visited the school farm. We have those that are passionate about making a difference, who need an effective supporting leadership in the direction of their interests. Ideally, our institutions of higher learning and independent organisations must take the leadership initiative.
The difficult economic situation prompted people to flood the so-called informal sector. Most of them are now happy that their contribution has a strong bearing on the overall economy of the country. They have gone beyond survival.
It is time we start an entrepreneurship revolution that changes the way people think, view and perceive entrepreneurship. Though the Government has activated entrepreneurship programmes in universities and innovation hubs have been set up, it is now incumbent upon such institutions to desist from feeding students with theory without the practical feel. They must make productive use of these hubs for the benefit of the institutions and the students.
The overall thrust of the entrepreneurship revolution is to revive our Zimbabwean economy through determined, willing, prospective and current entrepreneurs bent on innovation, value addition and maximum utilisation of endowments.
There is need to seriously promote entrepreneurship endeavours at country level by having policies that deliberately support and promote this space. Once economic players embrace the entrepreneurship revolution, we will have enough unique products and services for our own consumption as a country and a lot to export to other countries and earn the much-needed foreign currency.
Ideally, no one must be left behind. The net must be cast wider, starting from primary and secondary schools, up to higher levels.
We have talented kids who can be groomed and equipped right from an early age. We must promote the entrepreneurship DNA in our people and promote a culture of uniqueness, innovation, value addition and beneficiation.
With regard to entrepreneurship, there are no second thoughts. Our country can only be a better place with capable, efficient, productive and passionate entrepreneurs. Let us start the revolution together for the betterment of our beloved nation, Zimbabwe.
Dr Kudzanai Vere is an entrepreneur, author of four books, and award-winning entrepreneurship and business coach. He has coached more than 5 000 entrepreneurs globally and continues to impact people in entrepreneurship, business and personal development. He is the founder and CEO of Kudfort, Premium Business Network International, Transformational Mindset Institute, Tengesa Online and the Institute of Entrepreneurs Zimbabwe. He can be contacted on: [email protected] or +263 719 592232