Summary for Week Four

This week the lesson is perseverance. It was a thread that stretched through much of the reading and videos. The road to entrepreneurship can be long and challenging. We have stars in our eyes and imagine we’ll start a company that will be wildly successful, and then we’ll sell it for millions of dollars and retire. This happens very rarely, but it’s the story we’re told, so we believe it’s common.

The reality is that many businesses fail, and those that succeed often have only modest success. One lesson that rang out to me this week was the idea that successful entrepreneurs aren’t successful because they’re wealthy, they’re successful because they’ve learned to live within their means so that they have the time to do what matters to them. This is the essential idea that drove me towards the path of entrepreneurship, but it can be easy to forget if I am not careful.

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Summary for Week Four

Summary for Week Three

The material this week was more diverse but the focus was on a life well lived. I mentioned my thoughts on one article, Clayton Christensen’s How Will You Measure Your Life?, in a separate post. As I said there, I read Christensen’s book of the same title awhile back and it had a profound impact on my impression of business; it’s part of why I’m pursuing a degree in business management. My key takeaway from that article was one of Christensen’s final comments: Don’t worry about the level of individual prominence you have achieved; worry about the individuals you have helped become better people. That comment nicely sums up what I’ve learned so far in this course.

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Summary for Week Three

Summary for Week 2

As I go through my entrepreneurship class, I’ll need to post these weekly summaries of what I’ve learned over the course of the week. Occasionally, there will also be specific topics or questions I need to address in the post.

In this second week, we’ve looked more closely at the question of business ethics. If I could summarize the message in two words they would be people and integrity. What has become clear to me throughout my reading related to this class and what was reiterated this week is that business and entrepreneurship center around people. As an entrepreneur, I strive to help people; and to succeed, I rely upon the relationships that I build with others. An ethical business places people before profit.

The strong relationships required for a business to succeed are built upon a foundation of integrity. As an entrepreneur, my actions are consistent with my values, and my values derive from a strong moral compass. My moral compass is based upon my Christian discipleship. My compass sets me on a course defined by traditional values of respect, honesty, service, fellowship, work, and charity. As I remain true to these values, as I have integrity, the people I work with grow to trust me.

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Summary for Week 2

Summary Post for Week 1 of Class

As I go through my entrepreneurship class, I’ll need to post these weekly summaries of what I’ve learned over the course of the week. Occasionally, there will also be specific topics or questions I need to address in the post, as in this case.

As the class really got off the ground this week, I learned the most from the lecture by Jeffrey A. Thompson, What is Your Calling in Life? One of the things I struggle with as I consider the idea of entrepreneurship is seeing how it might apply in an employment setting such as I’m in right now. What Thompson’s lecture taught me is that my calling in life derives from the spiritual gifts and talents I possess, and those can be exercised in any setting. As I use those gifts to bless the lives of those around me, whether as an employee or even outside of work, I am living my calling in life. Over time, too, as people grow to understand and appreciate my talents, they may open up new professional opportunities for me. Going forward, I hope to gain greater insight into my particular gifts and how I can apply them in everyday settings.

There are three questions I’m asked to answer about Randy Pausch’s lecture, but before doing so, I’ll point out that Pausch is a great example of what Thompson taught. Pausch had gifts and talents that he used in every setting, even settings that weren’t necessarily what he dreamed of as a child, and by using those talents, doors opened for him that allowed him to realize his childhood dreams and that created professional opportunities for him based on his talents.

Now onto the questions…

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Summary Post for Week 1 of Class