In between celebrating Ashes victory (making having an Australian franchise even more enjoyable than normal) and watching Series 8 of 24 (Jack Bauer very much a leadership role model), I managed to write a quick article for the Guardian Social Enterprise Network on how social entrepreneurs learn, expanding on the old question of "are entrepreneurs born or made?". You can read the whole piece here: Look back after you've leapt: how social entrepreneurs learn from experience
The title refers to one section, where I was explaining how the old proverb "look before you leap" didn't quite apply to entrepreneurs….the process being more like:
"It's key that you leap….definitely leap….
….but why don't you hear from some other people who who have already leapt and see how they landed….
….and then you won't leap in that way that landed them in a puddle…
….then learn a bit more about where to choose to leap first…..
….then get inspired by (and encouragement from) people around you also leaping…
…then Leap – and then look back and see how that went…..
…and how you might leap differently next time….
…and then look for the next leap that's needed."
Not necessarily the snappiest bit of writing ever, but a fair approximation of what 'progress' looks like for a lot of those we support; and which underlies the way our programmes and our approach to learning is structured.
And also what we look for in applicants: is prone to action, takes risk + responsibility, demonstrates persistence and commitment, seizes opportunity, utilises resources, has a sense of vision / direction, clear about mission/objectives and so forth. Entrepreneurial characteristics and traits, indeed, many of which are embodied by Jack Bauer himself. Told you he was a role model… :0)
I want to share this famous quote…”The right merchant is one who has the just average of faculties we call common sense; a man of a strong affinity for facts, who makes up his decision on what he has seen. He is thoroughly persuaded of the truths of arithmetic. There is always a reason, in the man, for his good or bad fortune in making money. Men talk as if there were some magic about this. He knows that all goes on the old road, pound for pound, cent for cent — for every effect a perfect cause — and that good luck is another name for tenacity of purpose.”