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This assignment is going to discuss what are my careers goals and how my entrepreneurial and managerial learning can help me to achieve them. It will first examine how even if we do not want to become an entrepreneur or we cannot become an entrepreneur, we can however think in an entrepreneurial way. It will then, following the main point of the opportunity centred entrepreneurship see how it can help me to develop my career goals.
When you asked who/what is an entrepreneur, some authors claimed that "Entrepreneurs are certainly not like most of us". (Southon & West, ref). Often characterised as being unique, it could let think that not everybody can be an entrepreneur. According to Chell (2008:2) "Entrepreneurship is a process of recognising and pursuing opportunities with regards to the alienable and inalienable resources currently controlled with a view to value creation." Then, when thinking entrepreneurial, the concept of opportunity and value creation are essential. From that point, everyone can at some point perceived a way to create value that is to say having an idea to gain or improve something. In the case of a career achievement, we all have an idea of our "dream job". When thinking about career plan, the opportunity seen will be more personal, and the way of acting on it will depend amongst others on our past experiences, academic and personal learning, but the notion of opportunity will still be the key point. Then, not everyone can be an entrepreneur as it appears that an entrepreneur is able to perceived an opportunity from an idea where the others will not perceived it but above all to act on it and make it happen. However, everyone can think in an entrepreneurial way as everyone got ideas. The key point will be to turn this personal ideas in an opportunity and act on it to make it happen. Then when it comes to the idea of the development of a careers , it will more than think about potential ideas of careers plan, think about where are the real opportunity seeing my profile, knowledge and ambition. How can I develop my ideas of career in an opportunity and what do I have to do to make it happen. Thinking a career in an entrepreneurial way will be more likely to think a career in a comparison of the setting up of a new business venture following the same multistage process from the idea to the setting up of the career going through the research stages.
When trying to learn the entrepreneurial process, some models has been developed such as the Opportunity centred entrepreneurship, the Student journey (Rae:2007) or the business model generation. (Osterwalder & Pigneur: 2009) According to Rae (2007:10), "the learning process of Opportunity Centred Entrepreneurship focuses on the identification, development, planning and implementation of an opportunity, from idea to realisation." When talking about the student journey, the same stages can be determined from the Idea generation to the Early trading going through resources gathering for example. Finally the business model generation also follows what it is called the 9 blocks form the analyse of the customers segment to the cost structure. Then, when thinking a career in an entrepreneurial learning way, it will come to follow the stages of the development of an opportunity. Moreover, if we look at the stage that wright ( 1995: 3) describes when talking about how to plan and develop a successful career, there is four main stages which are "Phase 1: testing knowledge about yourself and testing this against reality to ensure you are on right track, Phase 2: exploring options in a creative way ; Phase 3 setting and achieving objectives ; phase 4 monitoring and maintaining progress". Then, as the setting up of a new venture is not made without any reflection, a career plan also as to be think, evaluate and realistic in order to avoid disappointment or failure. Those kind of model above help in our self reflection because allowing the analyse of what do we want to achieve? What are my capabilities and how can I use them to develop an opportunity.
My personal enterprise
As the ambition of a setting up of a new business, a career plan will be influenced by personal traits. Gonzalez-Alvarez and Solis-Rodriguez (2011) states that the ability to identify opportunity is cognitive task allowing some individuals but not others to discover entrepreneurship opportunity. Then, when for me working in an international environment looks to be a good opportunity, some others will absolutely not see that as an opportunity as they might not see any value creation for them. In the same way, the career goals that I will try to achieve are personal and comes mostly from my past, how I learned, my personal interests, motivations, knowledge and capabilities. As explain Mounier Kuhn (IEP Paris:2) there is more to see in a professional than just the learning and competencies. "The personality, temperament, values, project, vision play a role highly important in a career". Then, even important when planning a career, the academic and work background has to be understand with the personal variable.
The concept of personal enterprise comes to think about how can I linked the opportunity to my personal goals. When It comes to achieving careers goal, it will come to assess ourselves at a point and think about what can I do now seeing my interest, what I have already learned. It will help to build a self reflection. As stated Mounier Kuhn (IEP Paris:2) "Sooner a young professional gets used think about it weakness, lack, to assume what he is and what he wants , quicker he will be able to seize an opportunity as well as to gain some credibility and some legitimacy in his action. However the personal enterprise is a building of every moment and especially from special moment. Be aware of what we worth and what we want will help in acting on opportunity as it will avoid unrealistic objectives and will help in doing and targeting the research.
The personal enterprise is influenced by a number of factors such as family background, Education, Work experience, but also through special moment in your life. Life is made of special moment. The interpretation of those special moment depend on the personality but a special moment can be seen as an opportunity.
Indeed, my careers goals are now to work in an international environment but that was not the case two years ago.
Before coming to Lincoln, I was studying in France. After my two first year of university in France, I was not exactly sure about what I wanted to do. Around November, the international week took place in my university. During a presentation of whole the partnership university , I found the one from Lincoln particularly attractive. I then went to the stand for further information. That day has been a turning point for my future as it has been the beginning of my international experience.
From that special moment, I had the idea of going to study abroad that I transformed in an opportunity seeing a value in living in UK, meeting people from all around the world, gaining confidence, autonomy, English and academic knowledge. I can define my two years in Lincoln as the turning point , my special moment in my personal enterprise and in what I want to achieve as it gave me the "taste" of the international environment and that I now do not want to work in France.
However the concept of personal enterprise is always in evolution as we keep gaining skills and confidence through our experiences. From that, our personal goals can evolve as well as what do we want to achieve.
SourcesÂ : Rae (2011) lecture Acting on opportunity - making it happen
The construction of my international careers could be assimilate to this grid . Indeed, a product launch in the D categories as a new product in a new market will more likely failed than a product which start from the point A and go to the stage D through the stages C and B. If I and my careers goals are the product. We can say that before Lincoln I was In my university in France as an existing person.(A point) ,that I went through the stage C during my two years in Lincoln which make me gain an understanding of how adapt yourself in a new culture and a new country and develop my capabilities to know more about my strength and my weakness. We could say that I am a new product (or at least more developed) and because I want to go in a new market ( Canada) I have more chance to be able to adapt myself and to succeed seeing the fact that I already got an international experience.
Then, Lincoln has develop my entrepreneurial skills and thinking as I had to organise everything from the search of an accommodation to the enrolment in the University going through the planning of the financial requirement.
However, even if the opportunity that I have to go abroad is more likely to result in a success, and as every opportunity and challenge, it need an uphill study as well as for the building of a business Plan for a new venture.
Creating and exploring opportunity
As states (Osterwalder & Pigneur (2009:62) when talking about the business model generation " There is not a single business model. There are really a lot of opportunities and a lot of options, and we just have to discover all of them". Then, creating and exploring opportunity in the achievement of my career goal will comes to think of all the option and opportunity that I could have and see which one will be the most feasible and interesting for me.
When giving advice to turn a good idea into a great business, Southin & West (ref) states that " You must believe you have the ability to conquer a market place". As my goals are to act in an international environment and more specifically Canada, I could just think that I could "conquer" the whole market place with my skills and knowledge. However, even if some people build their career with the feeling, the build of a career has to be made careful to avoid disappointment. Moreover, in the actual context where the competition between graduate is high, it is even more important to analyse the market and establish where my profile could be the most welcome. As underlined Baron Shane (2008:214) when talking about Market analysis: "sometimes uncertain, but always essential". Add to that Canada is a new and far market for me to explore so the need for a market analysis is even more important. Then, when thinking about my careers, I will have to think about where are the real opportunity for me? What are the need of the company and how I could fill it ? Why would the company would hire me ?
When looking at a market, Rae (2007:89) develop the market focus funnel.
SourceÂ : Rae D (2007Â :89) Available via e-library
When looking at a market for a career the same stage can be applied. When looking at my careers in Canada, I first have to see which part of the Canada could need me. For example as there is some part of Canada which speak French and English, the fact that I speak both languages could be an advantage. It will come to think about which industry and what are the characteristics , which kind of organisation I want to target. What are their looking for as skills. Then, even if opportunity there is, a broad study is needed in order to mapping the opportunity and determine which one could be the best opportunity, the most suitable one for me. Then, when planning, I will have to think about few possibility and not based my research on an unique opportunity.
Moreover when it comes to find and work on a career ideas, it will come to create a demand with our skills. Indeed, If we define the opportunity as the need to filling a gap in the labour market, then even if very difficult at the moment, there is still opportunities and need in some sector. Moreover, the development of the business world with the opening market and the change in technology also created opportunity.
As far as I is concerned, I will mostly devote my research in City such as Montreal, Quebec as they are both big francophone city and might be easier to access. However, as one of the managerial skills is to be flexible, I will stay open to every opportunity that I could meet. The sector that I would target would be the marketing sector. Today, marketing is in every company and is becoming a key sector. Then, a large range of opportunities could be in the market in a lot of industry despite I would prefer being a marketing manager in the tourism or hospitality industry. Finally, I would target the large company rather than the SME as often it offers a better possibility of evolution.
+ Info sur Canada et conclure si opportunity ou pas.
Finally one of the nine blocks of the business model generation is the Channels and through which channels do our customer segment want to be reached? To reach my careers goals, I will have to think about which way is the best when applying for the company. What kind of CV and cover letter are the best as it can change from a country to another.
However, as it is underlined, even if there is an opportunity and whatever the good idea it could be, it will not fit into a market place as nearly as you think. Then , even if an opportunity there is, an entrepreneur as well as me in the development of my career has to be aware of the risk and the difficulties that could be meet. However, one of the characteristics of an entrepreneur is to be a risk taker. Then thinking my career in an entrepreneurial way is being aware than the labor market might be difficult to access nowadays, that I will probably meet some obstacles but I will still do everything to develop the opportunity and go to Canada, even if risky.
Acting on opportunity
The biggest difference between an entrepreneur and a non entrepreneur is the fact that an entrepreneur will act on an opportunity and make everything possible to make it happen when a "normal" person might see the opportunity but not act on it.
Then, after determine where and what could be the best opportunity for me, I will have to act to try to find a job and at the beginning trying to find how I could apply. At this stage, managerial skills will be needed such as Organisation, management of resources and relationship.
As underlined Southon & West (2005:P) Â«Â The best place to look for a cornestones is among the people you know (â€¦) Go and ask their help and it is amazing what they can doÂ Â». Networking is today a key point when looking for something. Indeed, knowing where to ask and having somewhere to ask help, advice, will help to attain the needed resources, influence and sponsorship. (Adler & Kwon, 2002).
When I attended to a workshop at enterprise about "creative job search" it has been asked to me to map the people that I knew, what they were doing and think about the people that those people knew and what they were doing. At the end I came with a kind of tree with people and their interaction. The tutor of the workshop then told us " this map represent the people that you might need when looking for a job".
As far as the networking which could be interesting in the building of my career, my father has Canadian friends, living in Montreal. Because, the major difficulties that I will meet when looking for a job from Europe will be the distance, having contact in Canada could help notably in the communication of my resume and cover letter, as well as to help in the search of company, website where I could applied. Moreover, as me with my exchange in Lincoln, I have some friends studying and living in Canada. Finally, we have in France the system of International Voluntary in Enterprise which offer the opportunity for European people to work abroad for a French company and notably in Canada. At the moment, those three options are the most viable when looking for information, website and even job announcement for my careers.
Planning to realise opportunity.
As well as for a venture planning, a career plan will need to set what kind of resources and how much of them I will need. According to Osterwalder & Pigneur (2009:34) "Key resources can be physical, financial, intellectual or human". Rae (2007:149) add the Technology. In the case of my career plan, the resource that I will mostly have to plan will be the financial, knowledge and Human. Indeed when I came in Lincoln , I had to plan the investment seeing the university, accommodation and living life cost. The same will be needed in the case where I can go to Canada. I will have to plan at least the travel, the first month of living and the accommodation cost. Even if well prepared, some information will be missing and researched. Rae (2007:149) define the Human resources as the "skills, expertise and capability required in the venture". When thinking about my personal careers plan, it will come to think about the personal skills and capabilities that I have more than the one that I can offer with my diploma.
Preparing a plan is all about gains people commitment to our strategy and direction.
Management is concerned witht he direction, control,resourcing and administration of the business organisation.
According to Say (1964; first published in 1803), the entrepreneur now had to be sufficiently multifaceted to ensure the proper co-ordination of a range of activities such as the raising of capital, the organization of production, and the distribution of the product: the entrepreneurs were their own managers. (art emerald)
As the setting up of a new venture, the goals are more to implement it, to manage it and make it last in the long term. Then, a career needs to be manage. Indeed, a career is following a constant evolution. It is rarely than a career stay the same from the beginning until the end. Here again, it will come to see and grab the opportunity that you can meet during your career. "Planning is all about where I am and where I want to be". Then a career development will need Entrepreneurial capabilities and skills to achieve personal goals , to perceived personal opportunity and to work on it to make what we want happen. As a career is a following up of opportunity and goals to achieve it will also required some managerial skills to develop our career strategy. Then , as for a new business development, both managerial and entrepreneurial skills are required in the achievement of personal objectives. However, even if well planned and well managed, the build up of something also depend on a factor which is not controllable : the chance.