Entrepreneurship Education or enterprise education?

Entrepreneurship Education

Entrepreneurial talent combines the creativity, flexibility, risk-taking, and perseverance needed to succeed in a continually changing world.

The 21st-century skills as part of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) are vital, and entrepreneurship and entrepreneurial thinking are now more crucial than ever. But even in larger organizations – public and private – an enterprising mindset plays an essential role. They all play their part in any entrepreneurial ecosystem, with an important role for entrepreneurship education and enterprise education.

That’s why entrepreneurship education and enterprise education must have an even stronger place in every type of education. From primary school to higher education. But is it enough?

In this blog, we explain the difference between entrepreneurship and entrepreneurial behavior. Furthermore, regarding teaching entrepreneurship, we provide you an efficient tool for pupils in lower education and students in higher education. This online tool will help all students to develop an entrepreneurial mindset, and for some students, it will even nourish their entrepreneurial intention.

Table of contents

Global Entrepreneurship Week

Like every year, this year, The Global Entrepreneurship Week (mostly held in November of each year) is organized globally. This event takes place simultaneously in around 170+ countries.

Does it offer the opportunity to stimulate entrepreneurship development among young people, or is it actually about learning to behave entrepreneurially?

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The entrepreneurs of tomorrow?

Is being your own boss popular with students? It is not that popular, according to research by the Amsterdam Center of Entrepreneurship, into the popularity of an entrepreneur.

Although the popularity of entrepreneurial education is increasing, software engineering and working in a salaried position in the health sector scores higher.

The appeal of a profession is, to a large extent, determined by its status, and that also applies to entrepreneurship. There is, however, a positive link between the desire to become an entrepreneur and the familiarity with entrepreneurship.

This is important for enhancing entrepreneurial behavior!

Entrepreneurship education

Another research from the Amsterdam Center of Entrepreneurship shows that the entrepreneur’s success is related to the entrepreneurs’ management education.

The researchers have mapped the income of entrepreneurs in small and medium-sized businesses. They looked at the remuneration structure in nearly 400 companies with fewer than 100 employees.

Success has been measured based on income, chances of survival, growth, and profit. Higher education entrepreneurs earn more; their businesses survive longer, grow faster, and have higher profits. So, all the more reason to add entrepreneurship in the curricula. And it’s best to start young.

Enterprise or Entrepreneurship education?

These two concepts, enterprise and entrepreneurship education, seem to be about the same thing, but there is a clear difference between the two. There is a clear distinction between these two types of education. Entrepreneurship education emphasizes setting up, starting, and running a business, while the other deals with developing the attitudes, competencies, and behaviors for functioning entrepreneurially within the business and non-business contexts (Henry, 2013; Jones and Iredale, 2010).

So, the definition of entrepreneurship involves three key concepts: seeing opportunities, seizing opportunities, and creating value. In that sense, it can entail innovation. However, it takes entrepreneurial skills to combine these 3 aspects.

We have developed E-Scans, an entrepreneurial mindset tool, for stimulating an entrepreneurial mindset for the entire learning path from primary to university education. Not only to teach entrepreneurship to the entrepreneurs of tomorrow but also to prepare employees for the enterprising job market.

Do you want to assess the entrepreneurial spirit of students? Take a free test drive.

Teaching and learning in entrepreneurial education

Seeing and exploiting opportunities is what makes someone enterprising. That attitude can be widely applied.

The final notion of entrepreneurship, creating value, relates to running one’s own business. With a company, you can create value for yourself; income, freedom, etc. But moreover, you also create value for your environment, such as your customers, the neighborhood, and suppliers.

To add, value is much more than just money or income. It is often more about satisfaction and recognition. To be able to create value, an entrepreneurial attitude is needed. This means to be able to see and exploit opportunities (again and again).

Being enterprising is thus an umbrella term for entrepreneurial behavior. An important condition for entrepreneurship. Many schools or programs present themselves as entrepreneurial, but teachers and students hardly experience that in practice. This is a problem, especially for learning entrepreneurial behavior. So, what involves entrepreneurial education to a young person?

Examples of entrepreneurial teaching and learning

So, what are examples of teaching and learning enterprising behavior in the field of entrepreneurship education? How to teach entrepreneurship to students?

  • Writing a business plan for a (student) company.
    • It teaches entrepreneurship students more about creating value, but doesn’t inspire student nor learns them enterprising behavior.
  • A young entrepreneur in front of the class.
    • It inspires students on seizing opportunities but doesn’t teach them entrepreneurial behavior.
  • A program on opportunity recognition.
    • It inspires and learns students seeing opportunities, especially if they learn themselves to recognize opportunities through creativity and brainstorm techniques.
  • Entrepreneurship education programs, like participating in a student company, such as the Junior Achievement or Young Enterprise.
    • Such an entrepreneurship course inspires, teaches, and develops the entrepreneurial awareness and behavior of students because all 3 aspects of entrepreneurship are addressed. However, this will backfire when the teacher’s time and quality are lacking. This is crucial!
  • Graduating in your own company.
    • This is the best way to learn the 3 aspects of entrepreneurship; seeing and seizing opportunities and creating value.

For an apprentice, an entrepreneurial attitude means that he actively seeks new initiatives and recognizes opportunities. And learns how to seize these opportunities by transforming them down into concrete actions. These aspects should be part of the entrepreneurship curriculum.

Such an enterprising attitude will help any student within the business school, work, and private life.

Check out how E-Scan can help you in teaching entrepreneurship.

Can teachers also be entrepreneurial?

So, what about teachers, the entrepreneurship educators? They are the ones who play an important role in the student’s entrepreneurship development process.

With entrepreneurial education, entrepreneurship is gradually gaining a permanent position in education.

Next, for the future, it is important to join forces and coordinate activities. So that the national education system and entrepreneurship policies are further strengthened. 

However, the most important goal is that through education and training the entrepreneurs of tomorrow stand up.

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Read more about the entrepreneurial personality.