Entrepreneurship for non-entrepreneurs? Yes!

Youth unemployment has been plaguing European economies for some time by now. Policymakers have been striving to improve this situation through series of policies aimed at employment of young people. The present economic crisis, however, jeopardized all governments’ efforts rendering them futile when it comes to employment of, not only youth, but also large pools of economically active population. Unemployment peaks particularly high in Spain, but does not spare even the best performing countries like France of Germany. In light of this situation, policymakers look for new ways of untying the Gordian knot of unemployment. Right now all eyes are looking at entrepreneurship as a solution for persistent unemployment and source of economic growth.

However, several vitally important questions arise here: Will everybody intend to become an entrepreneur now? And consequently, what about those who will not establish their own companies, are they doomed to drop out of the labor force?  Answers to these questions are not straightforward. Entrepreneurs comprise a small percentage of our societies. Self-employed individuals, who according to many researchers cannot be uniformly regarded as entrepreneurs are a minority group in all labor markets in Europe.

Notwithstanding, even if only a small group of individuals decide to establish their own enterprises, the rest still benefits from entrepreneurial skills. Alertness to new opportunities, ability to question one’s own ideas and ability to come up with new ideas are skills which can be effectively applied in many work setups may result very profitable for already existent organizations and workers. Opportunity-aware individuals, ready to undertake risks and willing to “think out of the box” are regarded as assets in many firms. Thus training such skills at university and perhaps also lower education levels makes sense from policymaker’s point of view. Research conducted within CEO Research Group demonstrates that entrepreneurial individuals are more prone to find adequate employment to their skills and even if they fail initially they are more likely to exit mismatch than their non-entrepreneurial peers. Entrepreneurial workers are thought also to be happier and healthier which makes them potentially more productive in their jobs. Hence one more time we confirm that it is worth to train entrepreneurship to people.

Concluding, we may affirm that, yes, entrepreneurship should become a part of formal training for everybody regardless if they will or will not undertake entrepreneurial activity in its orthodox form.


Dr. Aleksander Kucel

Publicat per Dr. Aleksander Kucel

Alek is PhD in political and social sciences by Universitat Pompeu Fabra and holds a position of professor of applied economics at Maresme University College. His major research interests focus on intergenerational mobility and social inequality. Specifically he is an expert on education-job mismatches and has published mainly on this topic. Alek currently leads the CEO Research Group.

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