Google+ Google+

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

John Wren in the Wall Street Journal

A big part of the problem (with startup today) is all the energy put into academic wantrapreneurship classes and the wantrapreneurship seminars sponsored by the various off shoots of the Small Business Administration. Amar Bhide in 1994 wrote The Origin and Evolution of New Businesses, a summary of personal interviews with founders of successful businesses, he found they, with rare exceptions, they just don’t start with market research and formal planning. Saras Sarasvarthy research has more recently found the same thing.
What would help? First, adoption of the book published last spring by Harvard Business Review Press,
Just Start. It’s the best book I’ve ever read on startup. Shut down business plan competitions, successful entrepreneurs just don’t write business plans. Even better, shut down college entrepreneurship classes except for those planning on being of service to entrepreneurs. Those who want to start a business would be better served with a good liberal arts education.
Finally, get the Small Business Administration and it’s affiliates out of the startup business. They may have some value for existing businesses, but what they have done to startups is shameful. Since 1954 this tax funded leviathan has just about snuffed out the true entrepreneurial spirit in America,
The cure for those of us who have already drank the Kool Aide?
How about Wantapreneurs. Anonymous? Ever since I read Bhide’s article in the Harvard Business Review in the early 90′s I’ve called myself a recovering MBA, because I’ve had to overcome much of what I learned in graduate business school to actually start any thing. I still struggle. After reading this, might change. My name is John, I’m a Wantrapreneur.” John Wren on Alexander Osterwalder’s post, Don’t be a ‘Wantrapreneur’