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Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Entrepreneurship:‘Knowledge economy, perfect for 21st century’

The chief executive officer of e-Books Library, Mr. Walter Kny, has identified knowledge economy as a perfect setting for the 21st century entrepreneurs, just as he tasked Nigerians to dream dreams, noting that the likes of Facebook could have been created by a Nigerian.

He stated this at a one-day seminar tagged the Spirit of the True Nigerian Entrepreneur (SoTNE) at the Abuja International Conference Centre, with the theme ‘Creating Wealth with integrity in 21st Century’ as part of the Computerize Nigeria Project (CNP) contribution to Nigeria at 50 independence celebration.

He urged Nigerians to engage their minds beginning with dreaming which is freely given by the creator of the world.

“Dreaming is for free, so dream,” he declared, saying that the possibility of potential entrepreneurs starts with the engagement of the mind by thinking.

Mr. Kny, who dwelt on ‘Entrepreneurship 101 and opportunities for Nigerians in the knowledge economy,’ said that ideas must be simple, stressing that any idea that cannot be written down in a sentence may not be feasible.

He cited the instance with Facebook, saying that it could have been created by a Nigerian, stressing that Facebook was not just an innovation but a social entrepreneurial intervention.

“Facebook was not a technological breakthrough and the same are Twitter, Yahoo, Funband, among others,” he said, warning that these social enterprise are not locally driven but global.

He noted that all the aforementioned social entrepreneurial interventions are within the top 15 most visited websites in Nigeria.

Pointing out that an budding entrepreneur to be different, he or she must be strategic in nurturing the enterprise, stressing that self discipline is a pre-requisite in business.

“Discipline helps you to move and there is no silly idea,” he said, insisting that those born into the 21st century are very fortunate and are all born equally based on the nomenclature of the Internet, saying that all the people of this century requires is their brain.

He described intellectual capital as a sea of possibilities, beginning with the information available to an individual, especially the intellectual capabilities that one can turn into money.

“Everybody has intellectual capital,” he asserted, stressing that the top 20 knowledge countries made up 60 per cent of the world’s wealth with high-tech industries representing 50 per cent of their wealth.

Knowledge workers in the United States, he said, earn over 200 per cent of the unskilled one.

Mr. Kny said that most knowledge countries are making good use of their population, maintaining that more knowledge equals to more money.

“Why most of the entrepreneurship succeed is because they took actions,” he said,
He defined entrepreneurs as those extra-ordinary people who do extra-ordinary things, advising anybody who has a dream and the courage to go for it.

According to him, entrepreneurs must be change agents, pointing out that the first 100 per cent of the top 100 richest persons in the United States are self-starter entrepreneurs.

On the startup success rates, Mr. Kny said, “18 per cent first time startup are successful, 30 per cent second times startups are successful.

Further, he outlined some of the factors why most entrepreneurs fail, attributing this to lack of character, indiscipline, separating self from business, not knowing what they want, non-resilience, extravagant and bad management.

Kny advised that when a startup begins to grow, it is important to the owner cum entrepreneur to bring-in a management team to sustain that dream

“You must hire management team before you need them,” he said, stressing that it takes between two and three years for any startup t make money, noting that for every entrepreneur, everything is an opportunity.

Additionally, he said that why most entrepreneurs fail is because of poor fundamentals, leadership gap, lack of capital, planning, vision gap as well as lack of flexibility, which makes such enterprise obsessed with their dreams.

He maintained that entrepreneurs must diverse within their area of strength in order to make their economic power stronger.

“Once a while stop to ask if you are to start anew your business, would you take the same route,” he counseled, adding that entrepreneurs should not under-estimate their competitors, even as God always find a way to talk to man on earth.

Mr. Kny drew-up five keys to success which comprised of the fact that entrepreneurs must learn how to handle frustration, reject incoherent ideas, learn how to handle financial pressures, complacency and eventually ensure that they give back more than they expect to receive to the society where they operate.

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