Entrepreneur’s brew: Are they born or made?

Pastor Welcome Thamsanqa Mlungisi Dlalisa

In this article I attempt to answer this basic question which remains a debate amongst many scholars and entrepreneurs.

Before I answer this question, I also want to deal with the difference between a businessman or woman and an entrepreneur. What is the difference between these two, if any?

A business person is a trained professional who goes through a very structured process of business management studies and acquires pre-requisite skills on how to manage a business. An entrepreneur, however, is not necessarily a “trained professional”.

Entrepreneurs often possess what I call ‘rare’ qualities which enable them to start and run a business. An entrepreneur will always start a business from nothing. he or she comes up with an idea which ends up being a business that leads to business opportunities and jobs for others. A business person does not necessarily start a business from scratch.

Many businessmen and women are wrongly labeled as being entrepreneurs. So, what makes an entrepreneur an entrepreneur? Are they made or born? The next section reflects my personal understanding of this subject.

Entrepreneurs are both born and trained. What I mean here is that they are born before they are trained. For you to really succeed as an entrepreneur, you must be gifted and see your work as a calling. Most of the true entrepreneurs that I know, never worked for anyone.

If they ever worked for someone, it was for a very short period of time. Several of them were not too great at school either. This means your most successful entrepreneurs are not the most academically qualified…but they are truly streetwise. They do not possess enough university education. The closest example in my experience is a close friend of mine who only has a matric and no university qualification.

He started 17 years ago with only R400 and today he is running a cleaning company that is considered to be among the top five in the country. His business portfolio consists of businesses pertaining to cleaning, property, plumbing, pest control and hygiene. He has diversified his business so much.

So, are they born or made? I think God gives them a natural gift which can be developed and polished by university business schools. However, they do not do too well at those business schools either. What they are good at, is to attract those who are good at university, to work for them.

Firstly, I hope this small article will help you to see the difference between a business person and an entrepreneur. Secondly, I hope it helps to answer the above question: “Are they born or are they made”?

In order to help entrepreneurs of Tembisa implement what we are learning via these articles, I have set up what I call the JOSEPH ACHIEVERS MENTORING (JAM) program. The program is based on Joseph in the bible who rose to prominence despite his background.

I am encouraging all Tembisa residents to join. This program is aimed at supporting all residents of Tembisa but it targets mainly entrepreneurs, young professionals, university students and high school learners. It offers a range of support initiatives including career guidance, training and mentoring. Many have enrolled for the program and receive business management training and mentoring.

I challenge you to apply in order to propel your life or you business to new heights. To register on JAM, send an email to [email protected] or call the numbers below.

Our next seminar, during which we will be dealing with access to funding and digital marketing, is already confirmed for 21 September 2017. Our confirmed conference partners include ABSA, Nedbank, SEDA and Blueberry Brands and Promotions. This seminar will run from 9am till 3pm at RoyalHouse International Church (532 Entshonalanga Section, Tembisa). To register for free entry, send your email to [email protected]

For more information, contact Pastor WTM Dlalisa on 083 395 1165.


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