I spent some time today preparing for a presentation on entrepreneurship that I will be delivering to high school students in the coming week. One of the main themes that I am planning to focus on is the difference between being an entrepreneur versus displaying entrepreneurial behavior. The idea is that while not everyone can and should be an entrepreneur, I am becoming more and more convinced that everyone needs to behave in an entrepreneurial way. Even if we are employed by others or work for large organizations, there are certain behaviors that are critical in supporting our teams.
The same is true for project management. Project managers can embrace behaviors that are entrepreneurial so that they can help inspire and motivate team members. Rather than focusing too much on definitions of the term, I’ve identified some behaviors that are important for entrepreneurs. These behaviors can be embraced by project managers and leaders even if they are not the arch-typical entrepreneur. Here they are in not particular order:
- Being accountable for our actions and acting responsibly
- Taking initiative rather than waiting for things to happen
- Becoming outcome/results oriented so that we act with purpose
- Developing skills focused on creative problem solving
- Being persistent and learning from our failure
- Overcoming the fear of uncertainty
- Having the vision to see and build the future
- Becoming innovative in approaching our tasks and projects
- Developing passion for the field of work we’re involved in
As I said earlier, I believe that embracing behaviors of entrepreneurs can serve project management practitioners well especially since many of these behaviors are important to being effective leaders.