Entrepreneurship: The World Is Paying Attention

04/18/2016 04:26 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Entrepreneurship has evolved over centuries from renaissance tradesmen in the middle ages and inventors in industrial revolution, to innovators in this information age.

The kind of entrepreneur varies based on the state of development of a region. Most entrepreneurs in developed countries choose their path by free will whereas the majority become entrepreneurs by necessity in developing and least developed countries.

The different conditions produce different results so while entrepreneurs are more innovators in developed countries, we see more 'creative imitators' in developing countries who create a cheaper version of an already existing product. With the world now a global village thanks to the free movement of people, trade routes and technology; economies are now dependent on one another. As the developed world makes giant strides with such feats as progress in artificial intelligence, it must pull up lesser economies not with aid but through policies like youth entrepreneurship.

It's a Personal Business

Microsoft software engineer Saqib Shaikh, at Build 2016, the largest gathering of developers, introduced an application that tells you what is going on in terms of who and what is around you.
Shaikh's app might make no sense to you if you can see but imagine trying to decipher movement, noise and even silence when you are without sight.

Shaikh who is blind, lost his sight when he was seven and was introduced to talking computers shortly after. That began his journey into the world of technology and virtual creations. Shaikh's app which can be downloaded on smartphones or the pivot head frame, can describe the gender, age, and emotions of people around you which is really cool and could only have been created by someone who empathized with people without sight.

Entrepreneurship is a personal business not in terms of ownership and profit but in terms of essence, experience and impact. An entrepreneur should not be driven by money; if that is the case such a person is a businessman or woman.

Entrepreneurship is really driven by:

1. Passion:

Think Steve Jobs. The sleekness and fluidity of Apple is unrivalled. Job's passion made his brand a standard in the industry and Apple has struggled in innovation since his death.

2. Opportunity to improve people's lives:
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Ever heard of telemedicine? This merger of telecommunication, information technology and medicine is bridging the gap between distance and access to quality health care. Remote patient monitoring, health information, medical education and specialist referrals are now available with a click of a button to consumers all over the world even rural residents. The telemedicine industry is now projected to be worth more than $34 billion by 2020 according to a market research report published by Mordor Intelligence.


3. Empathy:

India's Arunachalem Muruganantham spent over two years trying to figure out how to produce sanitary pads after he discovered his wife Shanthi used rags and newspapers during her menstrual cycle as she like many other Indian women could not afford sanitary pads made by multinational companies. Muruganantham had to test his invention on himself when he could not find female volunteers; he wore a bladder with animal blood which made him a subject of ridicule when the community found out and also cost him his marriage.

Eventually, Muruganantham was successful; he invented low-cost machines that produce sanitary pads. These machines have now been installed in 23 out of the 29 states in India. He has refused to sell his venture to corporate entities; instead Muruganantham provides his machines to self-help groups run by women.

The Money Matter

Travis Kalanick and Garrett Camp's frustration in finding a taxi led them to develop a transportation company that has become a model for businesses globally; that model is called Uberification. Uber, now 7 years old is worth over $60 billion and operates in 58 countries and 403 cities worldwide. Uber's model is successful because the company invests little in production tools and its employees are in control of their business so there is a greater incentive for more productivity and everyone wins.

While innovators in developed countries are able to sell their companies to larger corporations and move on to the next idea, social entrepreneurs in developing countries like Muruganantham are more likely to stay with their ventures.

Either way scholars and researchers project the world will become more dependent on entrepreneurship for job creation and an improved global economy. As for profit, it is almost always guaranteed when lasting solution to a problem is created.