Alex Butler isn’t keen on the word entrepreneur.
I’m going to come clean.
I hate the term entrepreneur.
Don’t get me wrong. I know many wonderful, talented, hard-working, generous entrepreneurs and it has been a privilege to see some of them become very successful indeed.
It’s just that the term has become devalued. I’d contend that that is a direct result of the ecosystem that has established itself around technology start-ups in particular, a strange world where you are led to believe that it’s simple to go from zero to hero with a direct line to Mark Zuckerberg in a short space of time.
I had a conversation recently with a technology ‘start up’. You see, the fact that we call them ‘start ups’ shows just how de-personalised it can feel. What happened to the person with The Big Idea that would Change The World?
This young entrepreneur started by telling me exactly where he was in the production line towards greatness. There was a sense that it was only a matter of time before he would be ‘exiting’ with lots of money, if only he could get accepted for some funding scheme. I left without really understanding what drove him to his business, without feeling his passion and obsession with it.
I was curious about why it had become about the money and not about the idea.
So, what is the answer? There are many definitions and models of entrepreneurialism, but for me, Steve Jobs put it brilliantly.
I want to put a ding in the universe.
The fact is, that all over the world, and in many different ways, millions of people are doing exactly that. They are rewriting the rules of work, becoming their own bosses, and creating new futures. I bet many of them wouldn’t regard themselves as entrepreneurs, because they don’t fit the dictionary definition.
Many, like me, are notrepreneurs. Our motivations are complex and diverse, but it’s rarely about becoming a multi-millionaire. It might be about changing the world, but equally, it might be about changing gear after growing disillusioned with corporate life. For us, it is about the journey, and every experience along the way is part of that.
Some are natural-born entrepreneurs; it’s in the genes. These people were born to grow ventures. No less worthy an ideal, but they are more likely to take the faster route and try several approaches.
What brings us all together is that we are all seeking to make our mark and to be in control of our lives. To be free.
And that, dear reader is how KindredHQ was born.