Entrepreneurs Are Unsung Heroes

By Brett Melson Friday, May 14, 2010

“What do you want to be when you grow up?” Most children deal with this question, and often answer with the profession of those we see as heroes.

Everyone is a hero in some way, but some are recognized more readily. To our credit, we recognize many of those who are in service daily to make our world better; soldiers fight, teachers educate, and police and firemen protect. Those who excel in sports, the arts, and politics gain great respect and popularity. Seldom do we think to recognize those in the world of small business, entrepreneurs who fight heroic battles to grow a company and keep the economy strong. People in business, large and small, are unsung heroes who are often ignored when hailing heroes.

Joseph Campbell, a world mythology expert, contends that the progress of the making of a hero involves three stages, and successful entrepreneurs travel through all of them:

  • departure from the known to promote a better purpose or idea
  • taking a risk and having the courage to persevere
  • coming back with a better way or product

Thinking, “I can do this, and maybe in a better way,” the risk-taker is an optimist who then sacrifices comfort and security to promote his idea, which then becomes greater than himself. At this stage great resilience is often necessary as there can be opposition to challenging the status quo, and the risk of failure is always there. Finally, the successful trail-blazer returns to make a difference and begin dealing with future challenges, often becoming the unsung hero who puts people to work, and continues to make decisions daily that affect workers and the world around them.

Not all who venture out succeed, however, and a great percent of new businesses fail. But, according to Candace Allen and Dwight Le, “over three-quarters of all new jobs each year come from firms no more than four years old. Though large, well-established corporations are more visible, one finds the most entrepreneurial action and risk-taking activity in small business ventures.”

Though it is easy to dismiss the positive role of entrepreneurs in our society, we should celebrate those who realize their potential to effect a positive change in the world!

To read more on this topic go to http://fee.org/freeman/detail/the-entrepreneur-on-the-heroic-journey

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