5 Innovative Keys Colleges Ignore

When colleges cultivate entrepreneur brainpower they reinstate American leaders into competitive global markets.  Yet  university faculty who continue to deliver facts for past eras,  in lock-step lectures,  tend to engage fewer gifted entrepreneurs.  New horizons continue to pound home the message — Innovate or Die! Yet who would’t agree with Rocco Tarasi’s conclusion that:

No industry is more in need of innovation than education.

Increasingly, college students  ask how to  harness brainpower for entrepreneurial leadership. We’ve all experienced moments at work where innovators build tall ladders and climb toward new targets. It takes learned courage to climb and entrepreneurial skill to operate at the top. Could teaching innovative skills become a more central part of higher education’s currency? I call them smart skills in MBA classes I teach.

Whether you toss the dice with personal money or lay down your good  name on innovative  front lines,  some form of risk often arises on the way to winning ideas. Struggle describes most entrepreneurs while  supports seem more distant than not. Have you seen it? An entrepreneur on one side,   in tug of war with adventure on the other, and few solutions evident on either.

What  Could University Offer Entrepreneurial Leaders?

Mark Henricks, a writer at Entrepreneur.com reminds us of 5 winning facts about the entrepreneur’s brain that can make or break a business. Unfortunately Hendricks’ keys go ignored at most universities. Do you agree?

1. Your brain is both your biggest constraint and biggest competitive advantage. Depending on how you manage it – your brain buries your chance for success … or catapults you to a win. For instance, drugs such as Prozac’s and others help people to lift moods, improve memory, ease learning and impact entrepreneurial leadership. New anti-sleep drugs can actually help you to focus better. But what about drugs that lift your brain to heights and then drop it to its doom? University could roll research that pumps  facts out daily – into tactics that benefit entrepreneur practices in both states. Simply put, exchange lectures for gifted exchanges through brain based practices.

2. Brain research is bigger business that most people realize – Those who attend colleges that ignore this trend and stick to business as usual may be shortchanged when entrepreneurial opportunities open. “Annual federal neuroscience funding still tops $4 billion. And private sources including VCs are getting into the act, funding startups to commercialize drugs and procedures for modifying our brains and the way they work.” University could model and teach entrepreneurs how to renew with the brain in mind.

3. Many top entrepreneurs also show signs of ADD. Daniel G. Amen, M.D., a brain researcher and director of Amen Clinics showcases several unique aspects of entrepreneurial brains. “These are people who take risks, need people to help them stay organized, don’t like working for other people, have a lot of energy and are good at multitasking.” University could extend mental models that leave no entrepreneurial brains behind, because they differ.

4. Potential exists to enhance memory for all of us. Researcher Tim Tully studied the gene that controls memory and learning and then developed a drug that may help humans learn faster and remember better. Mice with age-related memory problems regained the memory of much younger, alert mice, Tully discovered. Universities could help entrepreneurs stoke novelty that stokes memory.

5. Entrepreneurs help improve bottom line benefits to any business by making work a brain-enriching place to be. Entrepreneurs benefit business when leaders offer employees more opportunities to teach one another and when features such as music enhance a workplace. A brain listening to music is one that enhances productivity. “University of California, Irvine, researchers found that people who listened to Mozart before taking a pattern-recognition test improved their scores 62 percent after two days of practice. Those who spent the time in silence improved just 14 percent.” Universities could enrich entrepreneurs’ learning through transformed settings.

Complete the survey here to answer the question … How are entrepreneurial brains cultivated where you study or work? Is your entrepreneurial offering toxic or well?

4 Comments

  1. Ellen.
    Colleges struggle with the conflict of student focus and some class sizes that have a wide variety of learning styles.
    Many prof. themselves are specialized in one type of learning and this is what makes them “good students” which is those who remain in school.
    The default mode of teaching is what is comfortable – for prof. to leave their comfort zone a paradigm shift of thought will help…

  2. eweber says:

    Mike – it’s fun to see how you leave comfort zones to embrace new approaches to learn and live. Yet I am curious:-) You mention that students come in “different mental sizes…

    How would you suggest faculty who are well positioned and often tenured in safe position – to embrace the changes you detailed so well here and in your work? Any ideas?

  3. Enjoyed this post.. thanks… The ADD bit made me chuckle.. it is so true ““These are people who take risks, need people to help them stay organized, don’t like working for other people, have a lot of energy and are good at multitasking.” … Virtually every entrepreneur I have met ticks all these boxes…

  4. eweber says:

    Thanks for stopping by Entrepreneurs blog! Yes, I am smiling with you as I too have found the same. I have taught entrepreneurs at several MBA programs, and served on PhD committees with entrepreneur as the topic. They are wonderful — and what a delight to see new ideas come to light when working with entrepreneur leaders!

    Do you find most entrepreneurs you meet find a venue for their good ideas?

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