Category Archives: Leadership

The Growing Need for Learning to Lead

Below is a super informative info graphic on the growing popularity of learning to lead via entrepreneurship. Please take a look at it, and consider the benefits that entrepreneurship has to offer.

Entrepreneurship-Education-Infographic
 Find more education infographics on e-Learning Infographics

Also  if you want to learn more about entrepreneurship education, there is a really terrific article posted on ApexStriving.com.  Be sure to check it out!

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Teaching Entrepreneurship to Kids

The world is a very dynamic and complex place.  Developing countries are growing economically at rates that stagger the mind, and at rates that are increasingly putting pressure on our country’s ability to compete.  In addition, our homegrown corporations are increasingly tapping the talent that exists overseas on the cheap, which is creating a population gap of people who lack the skills that are necessary for organizations desperately needing to stay profitable.

Therefore, I will say it! If we are going to compete as a country, we will need to start making some dramatic changes now.  As a country that has experienced so much material wealth in the past century due to the successes that the American manufacturing complex helped produce, we are either in for a rude awakening, or a forced shift.  Recently, I came across an article on USA Today that mentioned how many companies are actually profitable right now regardless of the layoffs, and that on average, the countries GDP has grown.

What this tells me, is that our work force, and therefore a large portion of our society, is in need of retraining or more education.  It appears that the ideas and education of the past has not placed our population in a position that is not conducive to staying competitive on a global scale for long.

So we need to change, as a whole from the ground up.  Where does it all start?  I would say it all starts in the classroom.  We have students being trained in this day and age for being engineers, IT professionals, doctors, lawyers, and general laborers.  This is a problem it seems, especially since many of the aforementioned will be made available in other countries for almost nothing if not already, and the doctors and lawyers are so few in number that a large portion of society is going to have to wake up and activate themselves.

As far as I can tell, one of the most important developments in our population is going to be in the creation in more designers, creators, artists, and business people.  This is going to be the area where will need to develop and become to compete globally. It seems like the manufacturing sector is being overtaken by cheap labor, and in many cases so too the engineering and higher skilled positions.  Hence, we will need to make a shift as a country to being creators and business people, versus laborers and technicians.   So it is going to start with the teaching of business skills and entrepreneurship skills to kids, including art and design.  The teaching of these subjects as primary subjects versus secondary subjects like they have in the past is going to be our ticket. Of course this is only my hunch.  What do you think?  Feel free to comment to let me know what your ideas are on our countries place in the global economy.  I am curious to know, whether or not you think changing the education system’s philosophy on what is most important in preparing the future of America’s workforce is important?

Here is a great post that includes 5 great entrepreneurship education resources to help you get started.  To take a look [Click Here].

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10 TED Talks for Entrepreneurs

A fellow entrepreneur gave me a slight nudge recently that motivated me to post this blog.  I think you will certainly find value in it as it incorporates some of the best minds of the 21st century.

Remember…..    The secret to learning as an entrepreneur is to mix equal parts of inspiration and perspiration. Hard work without a vision is futile, while a great idea without execution is similarly worthless. In these TED talks, you’ll find the inspiration you need and the know-how to get it done.

  1. Seth Godin on Standing Out: What makes you so special? Seth Godin’s talk is all about why people just ignore the ordinary. In order to stand out, Godin says, you must be either bad or bizarre. Boring will not bring you success.
  2. Alex Tabarrok on How Ideas Trump Crises: Economist Alex Tabarrok’s talk celebrates the practice of idea sharing. He explains that through free trade and globalization, we are now sharing more than ever to create a community that’s more healthy and prosperous than before.
  3. Dean Kamen on Inventing and Giving: Get inspired by this master of invention with more than 150 patents under his belt. In this talk, Dean Kamen discusses the Segway, and takes a look at even more big ideas, including portable energy and water purification to be used in developing countries.
  4. Richard St. John’s 8 Secrets of Success: How does success happen, and why do people succeed? Richard St. John knows, and he’ll tell you in this talk. Watch the video to learn the lessons of success.
  5. Tony Robbins: As an entrepreneur, your choices make a difference. You can impact the future of your business, an industry, a community. In this talk, life coach Tony Robbins examines the invisible forces that motivate your actions.
  6. Derek Sivers: How to Start a Movement: Do you want to make an impact? Derek Sivers can show you how. Explore this talk, and you will see how movements really get started — with the power of two.
  7. Itay Talgam: Lead Like the Great Conductors: Entrepreneurs must exhibit excellent leadership and management skills. You work much like a conductor — orchestrating different parts to ensure that they all come together like they should. In this talk, Itay Talgam examines how orchestra conductors can provide entrepreneurs with crucial lessons in leadership.
  8. Gary Vaynerchuk: Do What You Love: Gary Vaynerchuk insists that there are no excuses for not doing what you love. If you’re a dreamer, but not quite yet a doer, Gary’s TED talk can give you the shot in the arm you need.
  9. Alexis Ohanian: How to Make a Splash in Social Media: Make social media work for your venture with the guidance of Alexis Ohanian. Using the example of a humpback whale’s Web stardom, you’ll learn how to master memes and marketing in social media.
  10. Richard Branson’s Life at 30,000 Feet: Find inspiration from Richard Branson, the entrepreneur who turned a record shop into the Virgin empire. This talk examines his career, near-death experiences, and some of his motivations.

I hope you enjoyed these 10 TED talks on Entrepreneurship.  If you have any others that you think should be added to the list please share by leaving a comment.

In conclusion, the Educated Entrepreneur is all about empowering entrepreneurs world wide; therefore if you found these videos inspiring, you could do us a favor towards empowering more future entrepreneurs, by spreading the word on the following product that teaches entrepreneurship to kids.  Thanks for visiting and thanks for your support.

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America is Easy for Entrepreneurs

“I predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them.”  –  Thomas Jefferson

Yes things are tough right now….

I understand it’s hard at the moment for many to find a job.  I even understand that it is now a tad bit more difficult than usual  for many to become wildly successful.  But ……there’s nothing like a good challenge and a little bit of adversity to test the human spirit.  What I see is a great many that are still waiting for the bottom of this market or the bottom of that market before they make their move, I see many waiting for things to get better before they begin to move forward and make things better, and worse of all, I see a great many who are waiting for a type of permission to dream again.

So… I just have to say it….if this is you, and if this is how you are thinking….then I think you have the wrong plan, and here is why.  Because we are in America….and America is easy!  Yes we are still in the country known as the land of opportunity, and Yes, we are still in the only country in all of the world that has the words DREAM immediately after it.   I think it’s important that we not forget that there is no such thing as a Poland Dream, or an Irish Dream, or a Spanish Dream…..and how rare it is to find boats stowing away hundreds of people to get to any of these just mentioned countries.  No….there just aren’t that many countries with walls slowing others from making their way in, nor are there people risking their lives to cross rivers and desserts just to get in.   Yes…there is only one dream…and it  is the American Dream.

So currently 9.7% of the country is unemployed…  is this a bad thing?  I don’t know…it depends on your perspective.   I think that this can perhaps be seen as our time to shine… our time to overcome and grow.  We have after all grown in GDP and economic output as a country during this slight depression which everyone is experiencing and is so depressed about .  So why is every chum so glum?  Well I’ll tell you…what appears to be happening is this, our country is growing, but…our workforce is not.  We have 9.7% of of a country now without jobs because it doesn’t make financial sense to have them around.  Essentially there has been such an increase in technology that just about 10% of our country has been outpaced by it and can’t seem to keep up.  So as an economic entitiy we aren’t doing so bad…we are expanding, but as a populace we probably need to make some changes.

Now you can call me a glutton for pain but I think that on a much deeper level this can be seen as a test to each and every one of us who has found themselves out of work, or bereft of hope for the future.  This little test is going to see if we can be creative enough, persistent enough, and productive enough to find the opportunities and the ideas that are interwoven throughout this great country.  It’s a little test that if passed, will allow us to stand tall once again.  So what that we have an almost 10% unemployment rate and heaps of national debt among other financial woes…   It will behoove us to not forget that we are in a type of continual “Design Mode”…designing not just how bright our personal futures are going to be, but how bright our collective future is going to be as a country.  No it’s not going to be easy, No we can’t go on strike, nor can we get paid by demand…  we must earn it!  We must take off our pajamas, put down the remote, and get out there, give our best and hustle our faces off!!   So we put 10 resumes in today…now what?  Are we going to go home and eat Cheetos and ice cream until tomorrow comes around so we can do it all over again, or are we going to go above and beyond.. put in 15 more that are thoughtfully adapted?  Are we going stop there…or are we going to do more… and begin to THINK of, and then ACT on, the many hundreds of thousands of other ways that we can be of service to the community, the country, the world?  I’ sincerely feel…  that this is the only way that we can dig our way out, and be duly reimbursed, so we can begin living the way we wish, so we can begin living our little portion of what makes up this thing called the American Dream.

Consider this…. China is currently at 5% unemployment and Russia is at 8.5% unemployment….looks good right, but would you really want to live and work there?  Employment in one of these countries is hardly the ideal career plan…(at least as far as I can tell based off of what I learned in my college Geography courses).  The country of France is at 10%, and the last time I was there everyone seemed so defeated and somber I started to get a little depressed myself. (law of association I suppose)  They didn’t have the spark that we have, they didn’t have in their eyes the glimmer of a greater tomorrow….  I couldn’t sense that essense…that energy, of individual empire builders like I feel when I am here at home.  And Spain…one of my favorite countries in all the world is at 22% unemployment…..with their young workers ages 18 – 24 showing an astonishing unemployment rate of 54%!  And this is a developed nation!  So, what does all this mean?  Well, if you are an American, perhaps you will more clearly recognize how blessed you are, and how much more privlege and opportunity you have even in this day and age…as you are more priveleged than 95 % of the world (95.46% to be exact).  If you’ve read this and you are an American….It’s my hope that you will never again be able to say you didn’t know how much privlege and promise you had….because you are afterall in America….  and America is Easy!

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Young Smart and Global Entrepreneurs

Global Entrepreneurship

As a promoter of smart entrepreneurship as a primary vehicle to making a difference, I thought it absolutely necessary for me to mention a very fascinating movement that I came across recently, a movement which is gaining some serious momentum in Michigan.  It’s an association of entrepreneurs and innovators who are focused on building creative, enterprising communities, and is known as the YSG (Young, Smart, and Global) Organization.

I find it fitting to mention their efforts here regardless of where their primary activities take place (They are out in Michigan, far from where I currently reside…Arizona) because of what they stand for and more importantly because of the ever growing relevance that their message carries for our Nation in the not so distant future.

Essentially the YSG organization is a very forward thinking movement, one which is focused on revamping communities in the state of Michigan due to an outdated social an economic mindset that is pervading that region.  A mindset that stems from Michigan being at one time, an economic leader due to their Auto Industry, and being a hub of innovation and opportunity throughout America in the early 20th Century…but ultimately losing focus when times were good.  Innovation slid and communities became comfortable…whereby, most people in the community got in the habit of working for big organizations, becoming dependent, and thus their creativity, entrepreneurial spirit, and economic potential ceased.   So…It is YSG’s intention to act as a catalyst, inspiring creativity, risk taking, and taking action in entrepreneurial endeavors amongst their population once again.  One of their biggest aims is to ultimately ensure that the old ideas of entitlement and the prolonged lack of involvement within their local communities disappear.

From my point of view…it appears the YSG organization’s concerns are not just a local issue.  What seems at the moment a phenomena that is occurring exclusively throughout Michigan has the potential to appear as a much broader issue, especially when a little foresight is used with an increase of scale, meaning when we look into the future and substitute national trends for international trends.  This isn’t difficult to envision when future economic projections such as what I’ve listed below dominate the daily news:

* General Motors expecting to reduce its work force by 25 % in the next five years.

* AT&T will cut its payroll by 27,000.

* IBM will let go 10,000 workers.

* United Technologies will terminate 11,000 employees.

* Unisys (Burroughs /Sperry) will reduce its ranks by 10,000.

* IT outsourcing on the rise

And of course other statistics, like how in the 1980’s, twenty-five percent of middle management jobs were eliminated in the United States (Greenberg/Baron 582), or how in the 1990’s, one million managers of American corporations with salaries over $40,000 also lost their jobs (Greenberg/Baron 582), and how in total, Fortune 500 companies have eliminated 4.4 million positions since 1979 (Greenberg/Baron 627).

Global Entrepreneurship

So…It appears YSG is combating a microcosm of what has a significant chance of occurring nationwide at some point in the future due to the loss of not only manufacturing jobs to outsourcing, but also IT jobs to outsourcing, and more dramatically, job losses due to the advancement of technology.   YSG has it right…..in order to compete and flourish as we have in the past, we need to get innovative, entrepreneurial…but most importantly, we need to get smart and we need to get global.

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The LOSER’s LIMP

For the past couple of weeks I have been having my fair share of trials and tribulations. I’ve essentially been busy being busy and not fully executing on the tasks I’ve set for myself to reach specific goals that are important to my personal and professional life. Basically two weeks have passed since I made an agreement with myself on what needs to be done in order for me to get where I want to get, and I didn’t realize until recently what I was doing specifically and what was really going on internally that was keeping me in this mode for the past three weeks, until of course my Fiancé asked me, “So how are those plans coming along…you know, those plans you shared with me the other day and set for yourself?” and naturally, I answered hesitantly, “uuhhhmm,… well, I am doing good everything is coming along, EXCEPT, I can’t really move forward UNTIL I am absolutely sure this is the right approach, so I am going to WAIT till next week…just to be sure …” Well, I pulled the wool over her eyes and appeased her for the moment. However it was almost instantly after I did so, that I said to myself in this realization, “Wait a minute… this is a LOSER’S LIMP.” I was pretending I had a good reason for why I wasn’t doing the very things that I knew I could do, the things that I knew I should do. I read about this….this is what ole Zig Ziglar was talking about in his book See You at the Top.  I’ll actually quote him verbatim because it’s a superb anaology, one I didn’t think I could be guilty of, especially since I was aware of it….so here it is:

“Characteristically, when a person falls victim to Garbage Dump Thinking, he develops an assortment of “Loser’s Limps.” You know what the Loser’s Limp is if you’ve ever attended a football game or watched one on television. The offensive player slips behind the defensive player, reaches up, pulls in a pass and heads for the end zone. The defensive man quickly recovers and takes out in hot pursuit. When the offensive player gets about 20 yards from the end zone, the defensive player realizes he’s not going to catch the man with the ball. Everybody in the stands knows it too. So, the defensive player frequently pulls up limping and the people in the stands say, “Well, no wonder the poor guy couldn’t catch him. Look, he’s crippled.” Now that is his Loser’s Limp. What is yours?”

I figure we all have these Loser’s Limps, some are big ones, some are small ones. I obviously just realized I have some small ones of my own that I really need to take care of. So I am definitely going to make it a priority to work on them, because I don’t want to be “that person” who makes excuses or who others will make excuses for. So what I am planning on doing…actually, I should say, what I AM GOING TO DO to help me with this minor limp, is print out on a sheet of paper an exceptional quote that I captured three days ago from one of my favorite books, and proceed to hang that quote above my study room, so everyday I will be reminded that I have the choice to correct my Loser’s Limp. Curtains please…….

“If you neglect to make the start, or stop before you arrive, no one will be to blame but you. This responsibility is yours. No alibi will save you from accepting the responsibility if you now fail or refuse to DEMAND riches or success from life.” – N. Hill

So in my learning that we all have Loser’s Limps I don’t think I will ask you if you have one, but what I will ask is; What is yours…and will YOU do anything to correct it?

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The Power of Pollyanna

I am compelled today to blog about the practicality of being a positive person no matter what.  Many people consider being extremely optimistic, otherwise known as Pollyanna (a person who is excessively optimistic without logical reasons for being so) as naïve.  But I must beg to differ, and argue for the opposite.

It’s not difficult to understand why some people might label another person as being naïve for choosing to be happy instead of sad all the time.  I mean, I know that there are many moments in our lives where we believe that we have the “right” to feel wronged, or even down, because hey, it is after all a tough world out there.  However, there is a power behind choosing a Pollyanna type approach, a power that many people just don’t necessarily seem to see.  Interestingly, what is usually not noticed in the individuals who carry themselves in this positive light is the subtle control and discipline that they are using to maintain it.  In actuality, holding strong and being positive in the face of negativity and scenarios which compel victimhood, ultimately demonstrates a mastery over ones emotions and reactions.  So what seems to be illogical to many is really a form of Spartan-like behavior that leads eventually to better results for the individual.  Let me show you what I mean.  Now I am sure there are many more benefits out there for maintaining this approach, but these are the three benefits that instantly come to my mind:

1.)  Living Your Best Life: A positive outlook means you feel better, and are thus happier most of the time, leading to a better overall experience of everyday life, which necessitates, overtime….a better life.  It was Marcus Aurelius after all who admonished:  “Reality is what our thoughts make of it.”  It is possible to force your reality to be a positive one.

2.)  Increasing Your Opportunities: A more practical benefit is the type of circumstances that one will attract.  It’s not blatantly obvious, but how you feel affects how people react to you.  If you feel good people will see that and will want to be around you to experience the same.  When you feel bad people won’t want to be around you.  This is important for business people and entrepreneurs.  By not constantly projecting an attractive positive personality, you increase your chances of missing opportunity, for the simple reason that key partners/clients might just be repelled by you.  If you are employed it closes doors to opportunities for advancement.  Nobody wants to work with, nor for, a person who has a tendency to be negative, showing little to no control over their emotions, and as a result potentially decreasing the well being of those whom they associate with.

3.)  Increasing Your Health: Positive thoughts = Good Health, Negative thoughts = Bad health.  The more susceptible you let yourself be to negative emotions and feelings the more vulnerable you will be to sicknesses and illnesses as well as slow recovery.  Don’t just take my word for it, look it up, read about it, the evidence is there.

Don’t want to do the research?  Well then give it spin, you’ll see….there is Power in Pollyanna!

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Economics 101 – What are You Worth?

Wow! What a hiatus. Last month was an undoubtedly action packed one. I took a trip to Paris, got engaged, and started participating in a new flag football league all on top of the business activities I normally partake in. Of course the blogging suffered a bit due to “all the activity” and of course a small mishap which had my blog temporarily deactivated. However, the good news is…. I am back!

So today I wanted to touch on something that has been on my mind a lot lately, Economics. I guess I am really writing this now because of a certain essence that seems to pervade the internet, the television, heck the world. This essence manifests itself as a blatant misunderstanding of Economics and economic principles. It is an essence that can be summed up in a mentality known all too well as “The Get Rich Quick Mentality” or “The Something For Nothing Mentality”.

Now, it is understood that this type of thinking may never go away, but perhaps it can be curbed a bit through people talking about it or blogging about it. Who knows?  So hopefully I can save someone some valuable time by helping them realize that they shouldn’t start something if they don’t really intend to be in it for the long haul and put in the necessary work (and yes anything worth doing requires work). In addition it would be nice if this post could help save someone, anyone from quitting too soon…all because they felt their expectations were not being instantly met. (Hello…..things take time!!!)

So, here it is….a pithy point to keep in mind or to share with a friend/acquaintance who is suffering from this dreadful mentality…..

It is…that you can’t get without giving!!!! Seriously, there is actually a law of economics which irrevocably controls the system that neither recognizes nor tolerates, at least not for long, getting without giving. So….what this means is, that there really is only one dependable method for legally accumulating and holding true riches, and this without a doubt is…………….. by providing useful service.

Now how does one provide useful service and why is it important you ask? Answer….  first understand Economics! Which you can find a bit more about in this neat little video.  To your success!

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What Are You So Afraid Of?!!

A Bundle of Powerful Maxims from Osho, Author of Courage:  The Joy of Living Dangerously.

 

I love Osho.  I read his book a couple of months ago and saw immense amounts of wisdom contained within it that certainly had potential to help me in my personal and business ventures.  Being the nice guy that I am, I will share some of the love just in case you can’t make it out to your local library or purchase it.  So, here are a few of his ideas to ponder on as you think about your life and why it is where it is in relation to the notion of fear.  Hopefully one of these maxims will serve you in going more confidently in a direction which you feel uncertain about, or through issues which have caused  you discomfort and insecurity in your personal life or business life.  Enjoy!!

“Why are you afraid?  What can the world do to you?  People can laugh at you; it will do them good – laughter is always a medicine, …healthful”

 

“Commit as many mistakes as possible, remembering only one thing: don’t commit the same mistake again, and you will be growing”

 

“But in the beginning there is not much difference between the coward and the courageous person.  The only difference is that the coward listens to his fears and follows them, and the courageous person puts them aside and goes ahead”

 

“Trust is the greatest intelligence, Why don’t people trust?  Because they don’t trust their intelligence.  They are afraid, they are afraid they may be cheated.”

 

“The man of understanding dies every moment to the past and is reborn again to the future.  His present is always a transformation, a rebirth, a resurrection”

 

“A man really becomes a man when he accepts total responsibility – he is responsible for whatsoever he is.  This is the first courage, the greatest courage.”

 

“The more alive the person, the more problems there are – But there is nothing wrong in it because struggling with problems fighting with the challenges, is how you grow”

 

“Don’t call it uncertainty – call it wonder.  Don’t call it insecurity – call it freedom.”

So…. What are you so afraid of?

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6 Activities To Activate You

So I was journaling this morning and had a small reminiscing moment.  I am not too sure what triggered the flash of old memories but I noticed it took me back to a place that was roughly about three to four years ago.  What I saw was some pretty interesting stuff.  I was simply astonished by my realization of how much has actually changed in such a short period of time and I am not talking about the external world.  What really stood out from my memories was how dramatically my outlook has been altered and even more so, my approach to life!  And I think it would be safe to say that it has been at least a 180 degree shift and all for the better, which I am sure some of my closest friends might agree with. …. Hopefully 🙂

So, since I had this amazing flash back and since I feel all these changes I’ve made in the past couple of years have been blessings, I thought I might share some of the activities that I think I owe it all to.  So…here they are:

1.)  I started reading 2 – 3 books per month

2.) I started journaling

3.) I started meditating

4.) I started running.

5.) I started waking up early to do a Power Hour (1 hour just for me)

6.) I started doing incantations

Well, I sincerely hope the 6 activities that have activated me most will activate you.  Give them a try!  What do you have to lose…besides your old self?…..

To YOUR GREATNESS!

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