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Career Catalyst Training Program

The power of an entrepreneurial mindset

Competency description

Entrepreneurial skills are not only crucial to creating a new venture but also to making you more employable and successful in increasingly changing work environments. Entrepreneurial mindset is the way you think and act and can be developed - exhibiting self-motivation, proactivity and action-orientation. Initiative and Entrepreneurial Mindset are your ability to demonstrate curiosity and a proactive desire to implement ideas to further goals. 

Competency outcomes

  • Recognize and leverage one’s knowledge, skills, ideas and experiences to further goals 
  • Identify and seize opportunities without being asked with an action-oriented mindset 
  • Determine and seek out resources to further ideas, opportunities or goals 
  • Show willingness to ask questions and share ideas 
  • Demonstrate desire to learn from failures and setbacks, moving on to new challenges 
  • Analyze potential benefits, risks and disadvantages of an ideas or opportunity 

Learning activities

Ever wondered what is an entrepreneur? Entrepreneurship can impact how we live and work. Incorporating an entrepreneurial mindset allows for greater levels of innovation and adaptability and minimizes the importance of failure and rejection in our lives. Learn more about what it takes to be an entrepreneur.   

Entrepreneurship isn’t for everyone. It takes the right mindset and skills to make it through the hurdles of starting something from scratch. This self-assessment allows you to learn about the skills needed and assess yourself in each. Keep in mind that entrepreneurs don’t necessarily have the highest scores in those skills when they started, but having a growth mindset allowed them to develop the skills with persistence and the right people around them.  

In 6000 BC, every human was an entrepreneur. It was a means of survival, trading skills and resources, crafting personal unique offerings and maximizing risks and awards. Entrepreneurship was natural to every human. Today, technology is changing what the job market looks like, and making the future of work look very different. To keep up with the pace of change, an entrepreneurial mindset is needed. 

Development in technology has greatly impacted the labor market and the employment opportunities available. Employers are seeking more creative and innovative employees who can be risk takers, quicker learners, and able to find and implement new solutions. All these are entrepreneurial skills being deployed within an existing dynamic, making the employee an ‘intrapreneur’. 

A social entrepreneur is a person who tries to solve social problems using entrepreneurial skills. They combine mission and profit to resolve significant problems. But how do you become one? Start with thinking of what problem you want to solve.

Dr. Tina Seelig of Stanford has her students write a failure resume. While this concept may be surprising, by having students write a failure resume that summarizes personal, professional and academic “screw-ups” she invites them to normalize challenges and setbacks and learn from them. This approach is also central to our beliefs about setback and learning when fostering a growth mindset. 

Here’s an exercise by Bill Burnett and Dave Evans, authors of Design Your Life, on failure reframe. They contend that failure is the raw material of success, and the failure reframe is a process for converting that raw material into real growth. It’s a simple three step exercise. Check out the blog and complete the worksheet.