Opportunity Recognition Training

For those who are looking for effective ways to train entrepreneurship, I recommend DeTienne and Chandler as a base to design local training. DeTienne & Chandler (2004) use creativity theory to build and test a pedagogical approach that seeks to develop the ability of identifying opportunities. They posit that opportunities emerge through action, through imagination, and an individual can create an opportunity from almost nothing. Contrary to the neoclassical view where the environment is the source of all opportunities, this research considers ‘opportunities’ a creation of students’ minds and ‘opportunity identifications’ a trainable competency. The pedagogical approach is called SEEC (Securing, Expanding, Exposing, and Challenging) and is embedded on the idea that opportunity identification is basically a creative process (Long and McMullan, 1984; Hills, Shrader, and Lumpkin, 1999; Fox, 1963; Plesk, 1997). Securing consist of register ideas. Keeping a journal to register ideas is one simple way to hold them. Activities like keeping a written opportunity log may significantly enhance an individual’s ability to secure new ideas. Expanding implies to design a web of possible solutions and then sharing with the class to enhance the development of entrepreneurial ideas. During the exposing stage students present the idea to others looking for feedback and improvement. During Challenging, ideas are judged by peers, some succeed and others fail, instructors guide entrepreneurs through this process to enhance learning from success and failure. To test the pedagogical approach a treatment and a control group was used. The crucial finding in this study is that SEEC training had a significantly influence on the students’ ability to generate more ideas for business opportunities and also have the characteristic of being more innovative.

DeTienne, D., & Chandler G., (2004). Opportunity identification and its role in the entrepreneurial classroom: A pedagogical approach and empirical test. Academy of management Learning and education. Vol. 3 No 3, 242-257.

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