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My latest project got shot down today even before it started – a major fail or an important lesson? Probably both.

So what was my lesson? The problem was that my partner’s goals for the project were not aligned with mine. I’m actually relieved that we figured it out after only about a week of work and before we launched because chances are that it would have become a real problem once we have put a lot more energy not to mention our reputations on the line.

Moreover, I appreciate my partner’s honesty and integrity in taking this bold step and confessing his true agenda for the project. Naturally, I’m a bit disappointed, but that’s okay because I have learned a valuable lesson: put the vision and the goals of the project in writing so that everyone understands what they are signing on to.

When you don’t have alignment, you might find yourself going in circles.

I’m currently working with a close friend of mine, who’s a martial artist, on a martial arts themed website. While we were working, we took a break and spurred for a while. At first I was using a lot of energy and force, as opposed to technique, and although I got some progress in my position, I got tired really fast and obviously lost.

To be honest I never expected to win because my friend is almost like a black belt level whereas I am barely a white belt. So loosing was not the problem. The problem was that I lost, was completely hurt and exhausted and I didn’t learn anything. Even worst, I thought I was doing pretty well.

Then my friend, who has 13 years of martial arts training under his belt, told me “Neil you’re doing it all wrong”, and suggested that I avoid using any muscle power and try to focus on technique. In other words he was telling me to work smart not hard.


We “rolled” for another round and this time I applied his advice. Consequently I lost even faster than before. In fact, I got submitted much faster, but I wasn’t hurt or tired and I actually learned a couple of new techniques. The next round I still got easily submitted but I was a tiny bit better than the ¬†previous round – and that’s progress!
That experience taught me a very important lesson. Namely that Only when I allowed myself to let go of my ego and concentrate on learning rather than winning, I made progress.

Hi there, my name is… you guessed it- Neil, and I am a scholar of entrepreneurship. Sometimes, I like to describe myself as Entrepreneurship Instigator. You see, I believe that we are all born entrepreneurs and that entrepreneurship is a very important life skill. My hope is that in sharing the lessons of my ongoing study of the subject, I will be able to offer some value to readers like you and learn something in the process.

To clarify my starting point, I want to suggest the following 2 questions:
1. What is Entrepreneurship and who would be considered an entrepreneur? and
2. Why is it  important?

There are many definitions for the term entrepreneurship. Most commonly, it is referred to as the act of undertaking a new business venture, that it involves risk and innovation and management and leadership and a lot of other staff. However, I would like to offer my take on entrepreneurship as a skill. Namely, that it is a skill that you can develop and master and it involves: identifying problems, finding solutions, systemizing the solutions and spreading them in and across communities. This definition allows for anyone to be an entrepreneur whether you are starting up a company, or you are spearheading a new sustainability program at your office, or even if you are a single mom who is starting a local club that helps other single moms handle the challenge of caring for their families on their own. It is worth pointing out that the adoption of your solution by others is key to this definition.

Next, Entrepreneurship is an important skill to have because at its core it’s about solving problems and helping others with their problems. nuff said! (more on this in a subsequent post).

So, what I hope to do is first, to convince you that entrepreneurship is a worthwhile skill to acquire. And second, to provide you with information, ideas, tips and resources on how to actually go about it.

Much of my discussion will be devoted to starting up a business and the challenges that face the business entrepreneur. As well, because I am located in Vancouver, BC, the majority of my examples and resources will probably be from that region. I invite you to share information and examples outside of the business world and from different regions in the world.

On that note, I hope that you will enjoy the content that I offer and receive value from this blog. Let’s get started…