Tag Archives: entrepreneur

New Vehicle for the Road to Happiness – Part 3

Night Watch painting by Rembrandt

Night Watch, Rembrandt, 1642

In my earlier post I mentioned that researchers are beginning to uncover the traits or practices that make “successful entrepreneurs” successful.

So what are these traits.  Two of them are rather obvious and shared by all vocations: education/training and social skills.  We all need education or training to be able to have a job that can support us and our families.

The same education and training allows each of us to interact with one another, especially in our jobs.  This interaction provides the social skills to get along in society, advance in our jobs or vocations, develop friendships, and have loving relationships with others.  As with other occupations, entrepreneurs need to understand their products or services in order to sell it to the public.  They also need to be able to interface with others in their sales effort.  They may also need to develop a team to finance the new endeavor, a team to create the product, and a team to manage the marketing and sales effort.

In many cases, unsuccessful entrepreneurs do not have the necessary education/skills to create or sell a product.  They just rush into a new venture and hope for the best.  Also, many don’t have the social skills to work with others in the delivery of the product or the purchase of the product; In many cases, they simply hide from the public and hope for the best.

Non-entrepreneurs may be well-educated/trained and have acceptable social skills.  In fact, if they didn’t have social skills they would not succeed in the corporate environment that they work for.  Some people believe that entrepreneurs are those that lack social skills to compete in a corporate world – nothing could be further from the truth.  Social skills are critical to the performance of entrepreneurs.  Each of us probably knows a small business owner that doesn’t like to interface with the public – they don’t last long.

The above painting by Rembrandt, which I discuss in my book, is a great visual representation of the first two traits.  The leaders are clearly well-educated/trained and successful in their vocation.  They have strong social skills in being able to form and lead a group of men to protect the citizens, and they enjoy one another’s company.  The two men also project self-esteem and pride in their accomplishments, and a sense of duty to society.

So, education/training and social skills are the basics needed for our journey, and they can take us a long way along the journey to happiness.  They can provide the much needed belongingness or social interactions that most of us crave, and they can enhance our self-esteem, that is part of the human condition.  We can feel good about ourselves and our accomplishments.

Next post, the other two traits.

New Vehicle for the Road Part 2

The great thinkers (both ancient and modern) and the great artists have presented the roadmap to happiness, verified by one another.

However, we all need the vehicle to travel the road.  And the vehicle should be as modern as possible, as comfortable as possible, and as fast as possible.  The good news is that such a vehicle exists.

The great thinkers and the great artists have shown us what we need to do, which I have broken down into six galleries of the exposition found in my book.  It wouldn’t be very helpful to anyone if the human activities that are needed to travel the road are too numerous, too rare, or too difficult for any one person to possess.  What good is it to see the road to the place that you want to get to but no means of getting there.  The road might look great but, if you can’t travel along the road, the roadmap provided by the thinkers and the artists is useless.

The good news is that the traits that are needed to travel the road are the same ones that researchers are now discovering in the world of business.

It just so happens that it is the “successful” entrepreneur who has the traits, or follows certain activities, that we all need to consider as the vehicle for traveling the road.  Successful entrepreneurs are the ones that the researchers are following, and it is the human traits or activities of this group of people that are the means to travel the road.  Also, you don’t need to be a visionary or a Steve Jobs to travel the road.  Anyone can do it!  All it takes is harnessing the entrepreneur within you!

More to come.

The New Vehicle for the Road

A large number of my posts have focused on what the artists and great thinkers have to say about happiness.  I am very confident that the road to happiness can be found in the “prose” of just a few ancient philosophers and a few modern thinkers (vantage point 1), and the “art” of great artists of the past 500 years (vantage point 2).  These masters have not only presented a reliable roadmap to follow but they also depict what happiness looks like when we reach it.  This is all great news!

But, we all live in a modern world not the world of ancient philosophy, myths, and art.  We must travel the road of today’s world using whatever is the best vehicle for getting us to happiness and fulfillment.

The good news is that a lot of work, using today’s latest research techniques, have shined a light on a new vehicle for the travel along the road of today’s world.  In fact, this new vehicle is exactly what we each need move forward in life.

The conclusions of the research, which are needed to provide the confidence to use the vehicle, are just emerging and I am confident that you will find the vehicle ideal for traveling along the road presented by the “prose” of the great ancient and modern thinkers, and the “art” of the great masters for the world of the fine arts.

More to come.

Robert Frost’s – “The Road Not Taken”

Following along the same theme as the last post, I would like to present a very famous poem as well as a discussion of the intent of the poet in writing the piece.  This poem is one of Robert Frost’s most famous works.  It has been studied by experts since it was first published in 1920.

The analysis after the poem is an excerpt from my upcoming book.

 

The Road Not Taken (Robert Frost, 1920)

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,

And sorry I could not travel both

And be one traveler, long I stood

And looked down one as far as I could

To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,

And having perhaps the better claim

Because it was grassy and wanted wear,

Though as for that the passing there

Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay

In leaves no step had trodden black.

Oh, I marked the first for another day!

Yet knowing how way leads on to way

I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh

Somewhere ages and ages hence:

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,

I took the one less traveled by,

And that has made all the difference.

This famous and beautifully written poem by Frost is not what it seems.  One would think that it is inspirational in its suggestion that selecting the road less traveled is the path to happiness.  However, upon closer reading, the traveler in this poem sees two roads that diverge into the woods and both roads look identical in wear.  In addition, the traveler mentions that, “with a sigh,” he/she will recall in the future the “one less traveled by” was chosen at the fork in the road. 

This poem is one of disappointment by the traveler at not being offered the opportunity to see the less traveled path.  The traveler knows that selecting the less traveled path will “make all the difference” and is necessary if happiness is to be achieved.  Unfortunately for this traveler, such a less traveled path is never encountered.

The fork in the road of this poem is not that exceptional; it is just one of many everyday decisions that all of us make in our lives.  No call to adventure was ever given or, if it was given, the traveler never recognized it.  The traveler simply remains in the everyday world without the opportunity for adventure.  The traveler knows this to be his fate and realizes that in the future he will sigh with disappointment at not being given the opportunity for a more complete life.  Vividly represented is the resignation to the future of an everyday existence.

Why are Entrepreneurs Entrepreneurs?

I have done a significant amount of research regarding the traits of entrepreneurs for my book.  Over the past several decades the academic researchers have determined that successful entrepreneurs shares certain behavior traits.  These traits are discussed in my book.

Photo of entrepreneur, Thomas Edison

What is amazing to me is that these researchers have determined the shared traits but don’t seem to answer the most basic of all questions regarding entrepreneurship: Why become an entrepreneur.  After all, if the stakes are so high regarding the financial risks, time spent, and impact on one’s self-esteem, you would think that this would be the fundamental question to answer.

In fact, I attended a launch of a new book on entrepreneurship and I asked the authors the same question.  Their answer was startling.  They said that they did not have the answer, but most likely the answer is that entrepreneurs do not fit into the corporate world and that is why they go off on their own.  Shocking answer!

What my research indicates is a very different reason and one that most people would wish they had if they knew the real reason.

The Vehicle for Reaching Happiness

Painting by Remington expressing courage

Life’s journey is full of risks.

However, these risks must be embraced if each of us is to move forward in life.

The best approach for preparing to meet these risks is to harness the entrepreneur within each of us.

Employing this gift generates IOUs throughout life.  Eventually, these IOUs are cashed in for happiness.

In the next post I will talk about the specific entrepreneurial characteristics needed to move forward towards happiness.

Book Intended for Everyone

Painting by Munch

This book is meant for everyone.  It provides the roadmap for all of us no matter which gallery of life we may be in today.

This book is especially important for:

1) those who are stuck in a rut or are having a mid-life crisis,

2) those that have a passion to do something, but afraid to take it to the next level,

3) entrepreneurs that need some encouragement along the way to deal with the many risks that they will encounter (small business owners, professionals in private practice, intrapreneurs, and managers looking to instill entrepreneurship and creativity among their workers),

4) anyone who is unsure were they are heading in life,

5) anyone who is looking for inspiration and a little help along the way.

If you pass others on the street and they kind of have the look of those in the painting by Munch, you are not along.  This book can help you break from the crowd, like the lone figure in the painting, and begin your journey to the blue horizon.