I meet with a lot of business founders. One thing that is consistent among them is a desire to pass their vision on to someone when they are ready to retire or pursue other things. Some get their children involved for this purpose, but it’s not always a great fit. Many are searching for an eager young entrepreneurial worker who can come on board, learn the ropes, and, bit by bit, make the vision into their own.
This is a tough person to find. Most employees, even the really good ones, are good because they excel at a particular task nested within the overall mission. Their ability to ignore distractions and multiple sources of worry lets them hone in on their particular function. This makes a business go, but it’s not the kind of person typically suited to take over the whole operation.
Most entrepreneurs, in the narrow and popular sense, are often too impatient to learn from an existing business owner and transition into the role. They want bigger risks. They want to start from ground zero. They have the crazy notion that they can do nearly everything better, and they’re only content to learn through trial and error.
What’s needed to transition many of the millions of small and mid-sized businesses to the next generation of leadership are entrepreneurial employees. Eager, smart, driven people with more vision and risk tolerance than the typical employee, but more patience and humility than the typical entrepreneur. The number of business owners who are searching for people like this is huge.
That is one of the niches Praxis can fill. What better way to learn the necessary skills for running a business than to work alongside those who do? Yet that alone might create a bit too narrow a world view. The next generation needs to know more than how current owners do things. They need to get the vision on a deep level, and see innovations and new directions the current generation can’t see or can’t execute. It’s important to combine entrepreneurial experience with big picture intellectual challenge. It’s why we created the Praxis curriculum, complete with philosophy, history, economics, business, digital skills, and entrepreneurship & life skills. It’s why we want to expose participants to more than just the particular entrepreneur they’ll work with as their partner.
If you have an entrepreneurial spark, but you don’t necessarily feel ready or interested in starting from scratch, consider jumping in with both feet to a vision you can believe in, learning how to carry it out, and making it your own over time. Praxis is ideally suited for the entrepreneurial employee.