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What is entrepreneurship?

Question:

Discuss about the Entrepreneurial Motivation Creativity and Opportunity.

The term entrepreneurship” was formulated by Professor Howard Stevenson. It is defined as “...the pursuit of opportunity beyond resources controlled” (Sinoway and Meadow, 2012).  Individuals who have entrepreneurship competence possess sets of knowledge, attitudes, and skills for the recognition of opportunity, exploitation, and value creation and action orientation. They are e likely to identify problems and take action (Herrmann, Hannon, COS and Ternouth, 2008; Lillevali and Taks, 2017).  To document an existing example of the process an entrepreneur could take to pursue an opportunity they have identified, we interviewed David Hennessy at Motor Staff and his newly founded venture, Job-Driven.

Since commencing its operations in 1995, Motor Staff specialize in recruiting for the automotive sector. They support automotive companies that include dealerships, aftermarket automotive businesses (including small or large workshops) and manufacturers who have their head offices based in Australia. These are otherwise known as Original Equipment Manufacturer or OEM’s like Mazda, Mercedes-Benz, Ford, Kia, etc. Like other recruitment agencies, Motor Staff is a firm who source candidates for employers (Turkina & Thai, 2015). Once Motor Staff have received a recruitment brief, their recruitment methodology includes advertising for the position on the relevant job boards and social media. They will also be conducting extensive searches on several databases, emailing potential candidates in the database, interviewing, reference checking, shortlisting, facilitating interviews, negotiating salary and condition of employment and assisting with on-boarding once the campaign is successful (Davidsson, 2017).

With a career in owning and operating a café/restaurant and working in the corporate entertainment industry, David Hennessy who is 42 years old, joined his father in 2012 with a goal of expanding Motor Staff. Motor Staff currently has three primary office locations (Dutt, Grabe & Castro, 2016). The first office is located in Sydney, second in Melbourne and the third in Queensland as well as having handled briefs in South Australia, Western Australia as well as two to three assignments both in New Zealand and Singapore.

Over the past 12 – 18 months, David said it is evident that Motor Staff has experienced several challenges that include competition, competition reducing pricing levels, and managing the costs/expenses that allow Motor Staff to offer a premium service and point of difference. Being an entrepreneur, David identified a new opportunity that would enable Motor Staff to continue to capture more market share in the industry. 

Existing example of the process an entrepreneur could take

Motor Staff has always operated as a traditional recruitment agency or searches firm. David suggests their professional fee comes at a premium price, however with Motor Staff’s professional team offering good honest service and having the credibility of operating in the automotive space for 20 years their service is worth every penny. In saying this over the last 18 months to 2 years, clients have looked to cut cost using the less premium brands and smaller workshops. The type of opportunity David has identified can be classified as the ‘Locus of Changes,’ which says that new opportunities can be found from the result of changes in parts of the current value chain, and has found a way for Motor to monopolize on these changes (Eckhardt and Shane, 2003)

Before implementing his identified opportunity, David first had to determine if the venture has value. He also had to confirm that its future probability value will exceed the costs of the opportunity and that there is a future demand (Barney, 1990; Eckhardt and Shane, 2003)) David also recognizes that he does have some new competitors who have entered the market offering cheaper services. David acknowledges this, however, does find it difficult to price match because unlike his competitors, David does invest more than his competitors in innovative technology and new ways to attract the best candidates. While he believes that his competition will not eliminate him, he understands that his competition can potentially decrease Motor Staff’s revenue and market share in the sector (Voltan, Sagebien & Sarmiento, 2017). He also does find it difficult to lower Motor Staff’s professional fees because his expenses increase every year.

David’s experience running Motor Staff and knowledge gained managing a successful business over many years allowed him to identify problems more accurately, and therefore, a market gap to fill (Simon, 1984). David recognized an opportunity that will allow him to continue to offer Motor Staff’s premium services, build revenue/profit and capture additional market share. This move would be made by setting up another company for organizations who seek a cheaper alternative. This is considered an entrepreneurial opportunity because he has identified a new beneficial means-ends relationship with the company called Job-Driven (Shane and Venkataraman, 2000). This new venture will work alongside Motor Staff offering a more simplified service that is more a cost-effective model for organizations.

The Job-Driven model recruitment process advertises merely a position vacant and passes on to the client suitable resumes. The fee for this service is $799 plus GST per campaign. The Motor Staff service that offers a premium search campaign that includes advertising for the position on the relevant job boards and social media (Burton, 2016). It also conducted extensive searches on several databases, emailing potential candidates in the database, interviewing, reference checking, shortlisting, facilitating interviews, negotiating salary and condition of employment and assisting with onboarding once the campaign is successful has an average fee of $6000 plus GST.

Challenges faced by entrepreneurs

David does not have accurate numbers. However, he suggests that currently, Motor Staff has 30% market share of roles handled by a recruitment agency for automotive positions in NSW and VIC and 15% in Queensland. David feels that Motor Staff and Job-Driven's goal is to achieve 50% market share on the eastern seaboard of Australia. He then will further invest building more business in South Australia, Western Australia, and New Zealand.

Before entering into this new venture, David needed to ensure that the new brand was relevant and that it would serve its purpose in the short and long term without comprising the Motor Staff brand. Entering into this new venture, David gathered market intelligence to confirm the relevance of the Job-Driven in the market. He did this by contacting all the potential leads himself and via a marketing agency. David spoke with current clients, organizations who had decided not to use Motor Staff’s services based on price (Block & Walter, 2017).

David also talked with anyone he wanted to do business with in the future. During this process it was identified that certain prestige and volume dealerships preferred to use the Motor Staff model, however, confirmed that there was a market for a model like he had designed for Job-Driven. Once satisfied that there was a market for Job-Driven, David shared the idea with his team and explained the getting his team on board was essential to the venture’s success.

Moving forward with the business plan, David heavily consulted his accountant. David has worked with his Accountant for several years who also was a Business Adviser who set up and managed the administration for a company set up. He also engaged another specialist who he has long-term relationships with that could assist him set up this new venture. This specialist included IT/Website and a Marketing /Design agency and his printer to organize cards, flyers, and stationery. The Marketing agency assisted him to advertise the new venture via online industry magazines, social media, and email campaigns. He developed scripts for his staff who spread information about this organization via word of mouth.     

In Setting up a new venture, David suggests his most significant learning was to allow flexibility with the business plan, resources and time for the project. He was required to put extra in the budget, both money, and resources. He needed to be conscious of his time as the new venture was starting to encroach on his time commitments to Motor Staff and family time.

How to overcome challenges

David does consider himself to be an entrepreneur and he believes the keys qualities of being an entrepreneur requires unique psychology from being a business owner (Shane and Vene. His father purchased Motor Staff from the original owner in 2010. While David feels his father is a good recruiter and business owner, he said that his skills as an entrepreneur allowed him to work on the business allowing him to grow and develop the organization as well as identify new opportunities. David mentioned that he is less averse to taking risks than his father is. David firmly believes taking risks is the only way to allow an organization to grow and develop (Chandra, 2017).

David is an entrepreneur does not follow conventional methods in setting up or running a business mainly due to the element of risk involved is different in each situation. He goes on to say the level of risk can affect decisions made in your new venture. In saying this, David does feel the tertiary education does add value to new entrepreneurs as they learn business concepts, the environment, challenges, building business plans, etc. He also attributes life/work experience and his upbringing to his learnings of becoming an entrepreneur (Chen, Chang, Wang & Chen, 2017). He also believes becoming an entrepreneur can depend on your current circumstance in life.

At the age of 42 years old, David felt it was now or never. David recognized the importance of working on his business and developing long-term relationships with specialists like his accountant and marketing agency to advise him. He employs two managers and a team to work in his company to perform the daily operations.

Finally, David would advise other business owners to set some time in the day, week or month to aside to think. He suggests business owners should set some time to think about what the future may hold for their business and think about trends and challenges that their business may face. Doing this has allowed him to foresee the benefit of creating Job-Driven (Ramoglou & Tsang, 2016).

Conclusion

The Job-Driven is a typical case of successful idea actualization. David’s case offers an ideal entrepreneur who is ready to not only generate idea but also see it through successful implementation. Through this case, it is worth noting that David presents the best opportunity for others to learn on how to undertake a business process. David makes entrepreneurship to appreciate the need for gathering business intelligence; consult a specialist, and engage the team in project management to become a success.

It is through working closely with his employees, team, specialists, experts and most importantly his potential customers that David got to understand that he was able to determine the relevance of the new venture, Job-Driven. This made him set up a new company that apparently responded to the needs of the customers who sought for cheaper alternatives without compromising his primary business. Therefore, entrepreneurs are advised to borrow a leaf from David and take some to think about the future of their business regarding both challenges and trends because in doing so, they will be able to foresee the untapped benefits and implement their potential opportunities.

References

Barney, J. 1991. Firm resources and sustained competitive advantage. Journal of Management, 17(1): 99–120.

Block, J. H., & Walter, S. G. (2017). 2. Hofstede’s cultural dimensions and modes of entry into entrepreneurship. Exploring the Entrepreneurial Society: Institutions, Behaviors and Outcomes, 22.

Burton, E. (2016). Business and Entrepreneurship in Saudi Arabia: Opportunities for Partnering and Investing in Emerging Businesses. John Wiley & Sons.

Chandra, Y. (2017). A time-based process model of international entrepreneurial opportunity evaluation. Journal of International Business Studies, 48(4), 423-451.

Chen, M. H., Chang, Y. Y., Wang, H. Y., & Chen, M. H. (2017). Understanding creative entrepreneurs’ intention to quit: The role of entrepreneurial motivation, creativity, and opportunity. Entrepreneurship Research Journal, 7(3).

Davidsson, P. (2017). Entrepreneurial opportunities as propensities: Do Ramoglou & Tsang move the field forward?. Journal of Business Venturing Insights, 7, 82-85.

Dutt, A., Grabe, S., & Castro, M. (2016). Exploring links between women's business ownership and empowerment among Maasai women in Tanzania. Analyses of Social Issues and Public Policy, 16(1), 363-386.

Eckhardt, J.T. and Shane, S.A., 2003. Opportunities and entrepreneurship. Journal of management, 29(3), pp.333-349.

Herrmann, K. Hannon, P. Cox, J. and Ternouth, P. 2008.  Developing Entrepreneurial Graduates: Putting Entrepreneurship at the Centre of Higher Education, NESTA.

Knight, R.M., 1996. The process of entrepreneurship. Journal of Small Business & Entrepreneurship, 13(2), pp.3-13.

Lilleväli, U. and Täks, M., 2017. Competence Models as a Tool for Conceptualizing the Systematic Process of Entrepreneurship Competence Development. Education Research International, 2017.   

Nishimura, A. (2015). Comprehensive opportunity and lost opportunity control model and enterprise risk management. International Journal of Business and Management, 10(8), 73.

Ramoglou, S., & Tsang, E. W. (2016). A realist perspective of entrepreneurship: Opportunities as propensities. Academy of Management Review, 41(3), 410-434.

Simon, H. (1985). Frontiers in creative and innovative management. Cambridge, MA: Ballinger Publishing Co., p.17.

Sinoway, E. and Meadow, M. (2012). Howard's gift. New York: St. Martin's Press, pp.7 - 11.

Turkina, E., & Thai, M. T. T. (2015). Socio-psychological determinants of opportunity entrepreneurship. International Entrepreneurship and Management Journal, 11(1), 213-238.

Voltan, A., Sagebien, J., & Sarmiento, E. (2017). Beyond Revolution and Actualization: The Potential for Social Innovation in Cuba’s Non-state Enterprise Sector. In Universities, Inclusive Development and Social Innovation (pp. 147-177). Springer, Cham.

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