The person who can identifies market requirements, willing to take the risk and establishes the business to satisfy those market needs is known as Entrepreneur (Dr. Choo, S., 2006). This definition varies from one entrepreneur to other. According to Cunningham, J. B. & Lischeron, J. (1991) there is no general model or definition exists which can define entrepreneurs. Every entrepreneur has some unique qualities to become successful in business. By comparing few entrepreneurs, the analysis of the skills of those entrepreneurs could be done.
In this paper two very successful Indian entrepreneurs are discussed. They are Mr. Naresh Goyal, Founder Chairman of Jet Airways Ltd. and Mr. Brij Mohan Lall Munjal (B. M. Munjal), Chairman of Hero Honda Ltd.. Jet Airways is the most preferred domestic airways in India. Hero Honda is the largest two wheeler manufacturer in the world. These two entrepreneurs will be compared and contrasted with Mr. N.R. Narayana Murthy, Chairman and Chief Mentor of Infosys Technologies Ltd. and Mr. Zhang Ruimin, Founder and CEO of Haier.
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Mr. Naresh Goyal is Founder and Chairman of Jet Airways. Mr. Naresh Goyal completed his Bachelor Of Commerce in 1967. After completion of his commerce degree Mr. Goyal joined Travel industry with General Sales Agent for Lebanese International airlines. With his hard work he managed to at the position of Regional Manager and worked with several airlines and gained experience in ticketing, reservations and sales. During this period he also started understanding the operational system of airways on airport. There after Philippine Airlines appointed him as Regional Manager, here Mr. Goyal got the experience in airline's commercial operations. By this time in 1974 Mr. Goyal established Jetair Pvt. Ltd. which was afterwards known as Jetair Transportation Pvt. Ltd.. This company was providing sales and marketing for international airlines. He further took experience in some companies like France Air Ltd. and National Travel Services and refined his knowledge of airline operations. In 1992 Jet Airways started their scheduled air services (IATA, 2009). Mr. Naresh Goyal has got 30 years of experience in civil airlines industry. Jet Airways is operating approximately 320 flights around 48 destinations daily.
Mr. Brij Mohan Lall Munjal (B M Munjal) is Chairman of Hero Group. After some formal education Mr. Munjal and his two brothers was shifted to Ludhiana in 1947. Ludhiana was a hub for local bicycle business. Elder brother of Mr. Munjal use to supply components to local bicycle business and textile centres. With the time Mr. Munjal spread their business and started distributing components all over India and become India's largest suppliers. In 1952 Mr. Munjal started manufacturing components for bicycle industries. In the year 1956 Mr. Munjal Grab the opportunity to get licence for manufacturing bicycles from Government of Punjab. In the beginning they produce 7500 units per year. Mr. Munjal had more emphasis on quality of product. Soon Hero Cycles started giving competition to existing market leaders. In 1984, Japanese company Honda collaborated with Hero to produce motor bikes in India. After this collaboration in 1985 the first motor bike came out of the factory. Today Hero Honda is US$4.2 billion industry, the largest manufacturer of two wheelers in the world (iloveIndia.com, 2010).
Mr. Goyal and Mr. Munjal are entirely from the differently industry. But they way they build their enterprise is the same. They both grabbed the education which was not related to their field but they developed their knowledge of those industries by working in those industries from scratch. They achieved their target by hard work. Both entrepreneurs were self motivated, they analyse the future market need and grabbed the opportunity to develop and build their enterprise. They did not follow the other competitors, they made their competitors follow them.
Mr, N.R. Narayana Murthy, Chairman and Chief Mentor Infosys Ltd... Infosys is an information technology service firm established in 1981, by the group of seven members. Mr. Murthy is the lead entrepreneur in these seven members. He had completed his education in 1969 from Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, India. Mr. Murthy had acquired some experience from Patni Computer Systems before he starts his own company with six colleges. He emphasis to keep the enterprise simple and elegant. He is a democratic entrepreneur. He takes the decisions after concerning with other colleges (Pech R., 2009).
Always on Time
Marked to Standard
Mr. Zhang Ruimin, Founder and CEO of Haier. Mr Zhang is famous to use sledgehammer on the defective units in Haier factory. Mr. Zhang was appointed as Head Qingdao Refrigerator Factory. He was the fourth person appointed as Head in that factory in one year. It was require to change the working culture of the factory labours and applying new industrial changes to factory. It was a very difficult task. Mr. Zhang accepted this challenge and become successful to change moral of employees. He always gives stress to the product quality. He encourages employees to provide innovative suggestions, to fulfil upcoming market demands. And he also finds proper opportunity to expand the business with less or no investment.
All above entrepreneurs have different manner and styles of work. But all of them are hard working. No one of them established enterprise without getting appropriate knowledge, experience and skills. All of them had gone through the various steps of entrepreneurial model. They first learned the way of work, got experience, refined the experience, started with small venture but keeping high quality of products, grown the enterprise by satisfying customers.
All entrepreneurs are extremely self motivated by their clear visions. They drove the company with their vision to achieve the level of successful entrepreneur. They not only build the company but also expanded it to extreme.
Entrepreneurs cannot be made or born; they are developed by hard work and commitment. With the help of School of Thought on entrepreneurship (Cunningham, 1991) and Personal Character Traits (Burns P., 2008), recommendations can be made on the basis of these four entrepreneurs.
Need for Independence:
The entrepreneurs are required to be independent to take any decisions required. All the above entrepreneurs are independent to take the organisational decisions. They are boss of their own. But they do not take the decisions which may not in the favour of the enterprise.
From the example of Mr. Munjal, he took the decision of entering in manufacturing of bicycle components from suppling. He could do that because he was independent and free to take his own decision by his own.
Need for Achievement:
Need for achievement is the driving force for all the entrepreneurs. The entrepreneurs always set higher goals and tries to achieve those goals. Once they achieve their target then they set another higher target and make the enterprise develop.
Often profit is not only the target. As we saw all the above entrepreneurs are concerned to develop the organisation with good brand image. Mr. Zhang was not concern about profits; he was more concern about customer satisfaction and quality of the product. Once he achieved his first target for refrigerators then he started looking for other products. The public recognition for the brand was important for him rather than profit.
Internal/External Locus of Control:
If an entrepreneur thinks that they can control their environment and their destiny then its internal locus of control. And if someone believes in faith and is not willing to take any risk, then it's known as external locus of control. Entrepreneurs required to keep balance in between both. The extreme level of any locus of control may slow down the speed of development of the organisation (Burns P., 2008).
All the entrepreneurs mentioned above have managed to maintain their level of locus of control. They studied all factors moderately and then only took any decision for expansion.
Ability to Live With Uncertainty and Take Measured Risk:
The entrepreneurs are always willing to take risks and because of that they live with uncertainty. Generally people do not like uncertainty; they prefer stable life with low risks and a constant income. For entrepreneurs, it is not possible to have a stable life. They may not have fixed salary; they need to take very high risks in every aspect.
For example Mr. Murthy also had to mortgage jewellers of his wife to start business in the beginning.
This is the most important feature of entrepreneurs. Entrepreneurs always look for opportunity to expand business and increase profits. They analyse the opportunity where others sees big problems (Burns P., 2008). Some entrepreneurs could not recognise the future opportunity. This could be the reason that some entrepreneurs could not be able to increase and grow their business.
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Mr. Munjal was only manufacturing components for bicycle. But as he came to know that Government of Punjab was issuing the licences for manufacturing of bicycles he grabbed that opportunity and developed the business. Today, his company Hero Honda is the world's largest two wheeler manufacturer.
Mr. Zhang, when he was appointed as head of the factory of Qingdao Refrigerator; he knew that he was the fourth person in one year appointed at that position. But he saw the opportunity and developed that organisation by the name of Haier. Today Haier is known as best quality product in China.
Mr. Murthy recognised the growing demand of information technology. In 1981 he started his new organisation named Infosys Technologies Ltd and today it is a US$5.4 billion (Sept 10) company (Infosys, 2010).
It is the second most important feature for a successful entrepreneur. It is the most important tool. It helps entrepreneur to create, allocate and exploit new upcoming opportunities in the market. Every entrepreneur is required to become innovative to visualise new markets and modification in products or services (Burns P., 2008).
Mr. Munjal owned the company which was only manufacturing bicycles. But when they saw an opportunity to collaborate with Honda Company to manufacture four stroke motor bikes, which was more efficient. He started manufacturing those bikes.
To take risky decisions and face uncertainty, it is highly required for an entrepreneur to become self-confident. Self confidence is required to develop an business plan and to follow it to achieve success. But it may turns to disaster if self confidence turns in to over confidence.
When Mr. Zhang took the decision to accept the appointment of Qingdao Home appliances offer; he was self confident that he could change the economic condition of that company.
Mr. Murthy was confident that they will be successful in the future and borough $250 from his wife to start a new business.
Entrepreneurs are more proactive rather than reactive. They generally do not relay on the luck. If they see any opportunity they will go and grab it. They are very quick in their work. They are very energetic. Many entrepreneurs may work more than 20 hours. Entrepreneurs first perform the work and learn from the outcome of that work (Burns P., 2008).
As Mr. Zhang observed that there are some competitors in the market who can be bankrupt in the future. He met those companies and grabbed the opportunity to expand the business
When Mr. Munjal came to know that Government Of Punjab is going to issue new licences for manufacturing of bicycle. He approached the Government of Punjab and secured a licence for himself.
Entrepreneurs are extremely self motivated, that they can motivate their employees to achieve the organisational goals. Entrepreneurs are generally gets their motivation from the set achievements. Running a business is a very lonely process, so it is necessary for entrepreneurs to become self motivated. More self motivation could be gained by successful achievements (Burns P., 2008).
All the above entrepreneurs are highly self motivated, to achieve their goals in life.
All the entrepreneurs impose to have a very clear vision. It is important for the success of the entrepreneur. Vision helps entrepreneur to give then directions to go towards the goals while business is very uncertain. Vision gives motivation to entrepreneurs and helps them to get others with them.
Mr. Goyal had a vision to start their own airlines and he was very motivated for achieving that task. He put a lot of hard work to gain relevant experience and knowledge of that field.
Mr. Zhang had the vision to develop a Chinese brand with very good quality. It was the main motivation factor for him to struggle and build up Haier Group.
Burns P. (2008). Corporate Entrepreneurship. 2nd ed. New York: Palgrave McMillan. p.22-39.
Cunningham J. B. & Lischeron J.. (1991). Defining Entrepreneurship. Journal of Small Business Management. 29 (1), 45-65.
Dr. Choo S. (2006). Entrepreneurial Managenent. Australia: Tiled University Press. 25-47
IATA. (2009). Naresh Goyal. Available: http://old.iata.org/events/agm/2009/speakers/goyal_naresh.htm. Last accessed 2nd Nov 2010.
iloveIndia.com. (2010). B.M. Munjal. Available: http://www.iloveindia.com/indian-heroes/bm-munjal.html. Last accessed 2nd Nov 2010.
Infosis. (2010). What We Do. Available: http://www.infosys.com/about/what-we-do/pages/index.aspx. Last accessed 2nd Nov 2010.
Pech R. (2009). Entrepreneurial Courage, Audacity and Genius. Australia: Pearson Education. 144-155.