Can “entrepreneurial spirit” be taught?
A comparison done by Mr Brockhaus, a U.S.- American professor for
Entrepreneurship, shows how diverse the perception of the term
“Entrepreneurship” can be. He asks: Can someone be taught how to be an
artist?” His answer to this question is: “No doubt it is possible to teach a person
the theory of color and how to compose. You can surely teach him the theory of
art and eventually artistic skills. But you can’t teach him how to become another
Picasso or Van Gogh”.
This metaphoric comparison characterizes clearly how ambivalent the meaning
of “Entrepreneurship” can be. In school you can teach a student essential
economic skills as part of the syllabus, such as writing a Business Plan (which
would in our case be the “theory of color” or the ability to compose). At the
same time teaching them how to strengthen their self-esteem or how to
surmount obstacles as they go through life is, in many cases, impossible or only
possible to a certain extent. These skills are what we call “Soft Skills” and the
possibility of teaching soft skills is very limited. The reason is that they are
deeply rooted in someone’s personality and, in most cases, determined by
factors such as family, personal environment etc.
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