Introduction to Entrepreneurship 

Many people define entrepreneurship as the act of starting a business. But it is so much more than this one act; at its essence, entrepreneurship is about value creation. 

Value that can be created or added....


What does this word "entrepreneur" mean to you? 

The etymology of entrepreneur comes from the French, entreprendre, a verb meaning to undertake (Merriam-Webster). When we think of a person undertaking something, then we have someone who does something and takes action



1.1 Entrepreneurship Today, in Open Stax Entrepreneurship Book 


What does this word "entrepreneurship" mean to you? 


Entrepreneurship is a process that involves innovation. Many innovative processes, products, and ideas come from entrepreneurial people who are looking to act and to do something... to improve and make the world better. 


What does this word "enterprise" mean to you? 

An enterprise can be any of the following outcomes: 

How are entrepreneurs different than small business managers? 

Our focus for this class will be on the entrepreneur side of the process, not the manager side... so think of the creation, innovation side of an enterprise. 

Image borrowed from The Gritti Fund 


1.3 The Entrepreneurial Mindset, in Open Stax Entrepreneurship Book 

The Entrepreneurial Mindset  ... 





Critical Thinking 

Problem Solving 




Comfort with Risk

Interested in More?
Further Reading:

"Are You Cut Out to Be an Entrepreneur?" by Shirish Nadkarni, Harvard Business Review 

"4 Ways to Nurture the Entrepreneurial Spirit" an article by Amy Osmond Cook, Founder, Osmond Marketing 

Entrepreneurs use an entrepreneurial mindset to solve problems. 


Entrepreneurs solve problems. They provide solutions to meet people's needs and wants. Solutions help ease the "pain" someone is experiencing. The way in which that pain is solved, creates value. When someone's problem (or need is met), they find value in this and may be willing to pay money, although it does not always have to be a monetary exchange. 


Solutions are what fixes the problem or meets the need. Solutions start as ideas. Ideas can come and go. As Richard Branson, founder of Virgin Records says, “Ideas are like buses, there is another one coming down the street.” 

But, a solution isn't just an idea. A solution is an idea developed over time that brings enough value to people to become an opportunity.

Key Takeaway

At its most simple explanation, you aren't a business (or enterprise or nonprofit) until someone is willing to pay for (or use) what you offer. 

For example:

What did you stop and buy this week at a store? Why did you stop? 

Think for a minute, was it something you needed or just wanted? 

I went to the grocery store today for milk. I stopped at the store on the corner which cost a little more than Market Basket because it was closer to me. This saved me time. 

I went to Mill No 5 this weekend to get a present for my sister. I drove further and went out of my way because I knew I would find a cool necklace she would like at one of the local shops. I was willing to do this because I knew I would get something unique for her and that would make her happy. 

Where do Entrepreneurs Find Problems? 


Where can you find problems to solve?

Explore great example problems: 

Extra Reading: 

Challenges Along the Entrepreneurial Journey , a report prepared for the Kauffman Foundation by Jessica Looze and Sameeksha Desai, May 2020