Helping entrepreneurs turn ideas into a business

Why Aren’t Entrepreneurs In Government?

Politicians of today should be entrepreneurs.      

We live in a complex society. Individuals, groups, and countries face challenges daily.      

Politician in crisis


We must decide if our leaders are up to these challenges.  We find leaders failing to demonstrate their ability to lead.  Watching the oil spill and the feeble attempts to resolve the devastation this crisis has brought to our coasts I conclude our leaders need more entrepreneurial spirit and less ivory tower thinking.      

Merriam-Webster’s Online Dictionary definition of entrepreneur is:      

en·tre·pre·neur – One who organizes, manages, and assumes the risks of a business or enterprise.      

My definition:      

en·tre·pre·neur – One who brings together the resources to get the job done quickly.      

If you use the Merriam-Webster definition one could argue at least some of our leaders possess the entrepreneurial spirit.  However, if you use my definition then finding a government leader with entrepreneurial fortitude is as difficult as finding a BP Executive with common sense.      

Entrepreneurs resources can include people, finances and most importantly an idea of how to solve a crisis.  It seems politicians have difficulty enlisting any of these resources but mostly having ideas on how to solve a crisis effectively.  Yes,  entrepreneurial characteristics are severely lacking in our leaders.      

It has become almost repetitive when every disaster is met with inadequate or ill-conceived responses.  The phrase ‘proactive’ is not in a politicians vocabulary nor is the phrase ‘exception management’, however, these are concepts, of which, entrepreneurs are well versed. Entrepreneurs understand the implementation and execution of proactive and exception management processes are at the core of running any successful business operation.      

The world today has increased in complexity so does it make sense to elect officials to run our country that possess little to no practical business experience? We must consider electing public servants with entrepreneurial experience and who can bring those skills to running our nation.      

Again, let’s look at the oil crisis.  One has to wonder where was Plan B? What contingency plans did BP have if a crisis occurred? More importantly where was the contingency plan from our government? Does anyone else find the absence of a contingency plan incredible? An entrepreneur knows the best laid plans can….and things happen and always, always have alternative plans.      

A quality of successful entrepreneurs is what Robert Sternberg calls, “practical intelligence”.  This is the ability to maneuver through situations based on ‘gut instinct’ vs. the standard analytical fare often seen in the higher levels of government.       

Entrepreneur in crisis


It is my opinion, until we begin electing officials that understand our government must be operated as a business and posses some amount of entrepreneurial make-up the term ‘crisis management’ will be an oft tossed around phrase, and the ability to quickly, efficiently and effectively resolve a crisis will continue to be a pipe dream.      

Going forward when I consider candidates I will vet each candidate to see if they possess an ounce of entrepreneurship and I will then vote accordingly.      

My recommendation to current politicians is to bring to the discussion table entrepreneurs. Entrepreneurs are experienced in confronting challenges and gathering the necessary resources to get the job done.  Fellow voter’s careful thought should be given when considering candidates.  Do they have the experience and resume to bring the necessary skill set to the ‘business’ of government?       

Theoretical and analytical thinking still play a part in running the government.  However times change and thus we must add another ingredient. The ingredient to be added for our government to run successfully is practical people – successful entrepreneurs.  It is clear that the running of the ‘business’ of government should be transitioned over to leaders who understand the workings of successful businesses.  Please keep this in mind when casting your votes in upcoming elections.   

I  thought you may find the information below of interest too!   

  • 10 essential business leadership skills – are you a leader? truth be told, not everyone is a leader. it’s just not meant for everyone. and that’s ok. but more people are leaders than they realize. leadership takes on many different faces; it’s just a question of understanding … 
  • Concepts of Leadership – I used to think that running an organization was equivalent to conducting a symphony orchestra. But I don’t think that’s quite it; it’s more like jazz. If you have the desire and willpower, you can become an effective leader. 
  • Flipping the Switch | LeadershipJournal.net – How far ahead do you plan your preaching? • I plan at least a year out. • I schedule six months to a year ahead. • I plan my preaching but not six months ahead. • I plan the next 3-10 weeks at a time. • I go week to week. … 
  • Leadership Skills – Leadership, a critical management skill, is the ability to motivate a group of people toward a common goal. These items will help you develop your skills as a leader. What Is A Leader? This describes the characteristics and traits of a leader. 

June 28, 2010 - Posted by | Entrepreneur | , , , , , , , ,


  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Roy Osing, Brenda Collins. Brenda Collins said: Where Are The Entrepreneurs In Government?: http://wp.me/pRAsJ-2J […]

    Pingback by Tweets that mention Where Are The Entrepreneurs In Government? « Entrepreneurs -- Topsy.com | July 1, 2010 | Reply

  2. Good thoughts. In fact, I’ll even go beyond them. I have this fundamental belief that an entrepreneurial spirit and government leadership are diametrically opposed ideas. I’m a U.C. grad too.

    Comment by Chip Tudor | July 16, 2010 | Reply

  3. […] TipsBlown Calls Happen To Entrepreneurs Too!John Wooden A Great Man! Entrepreneurs Take Notice!Why Aren't Entrepreneurs In Government?Business Plans Three Important […]

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