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Entrepreneurship in a big company

Since I came back from my leap year creating my company 2 years ago, I still have some nostalgia about the good ol’ time when I was entrepreneur. The world was a blank notepad with a story to be written on.

I had million of ideas to create revenue streams, new advertizing ideas and even small changes on how to improve my computer desktop for increased productivity.

Am I still an entrepreneur now?
The honest answer is no.

Am I doing marketing?
Hell yes. Marketing in a big company is a great thing. I can do marketing all day long without having to closely follow all the details of the product development. I can stay close to the market and I deal with products which unit costs are hundreds of millions.
The budgets we get to play with have nothing to do with what I had for my startup.
When I have a question, all the experts are around, and having right working conditions is a given.
Not to mention that failure does not mean bankrupcy and not be able to feed your family.

With the right management help in your company, you can push for new projects and gain responsibility, and as long as you deliver, your actions will gain momentum. There is indeed some entrepreneurship in big companies.
Some people even came up with a name: “intrapreneurship”.

Is “intrapreneurship” real entrepreneurship?
The most soothing thing for my conscience would be to say “yes”. But “no”.
No employee is an entrepreneur.
The employee does not have a full interest of developing projects. The monetary perspective is a payraise that is subject to Human Resources policy and management fit. The employee will not be able to get a real full picture, or will only inherit it from someone who has built the business.
Every employee is important, but not irreplaceable.

The entrepreneur might be a big fish in a small pond, but the entrepreneur has created a long-standing asset. Being a shareholder in the company, the entrepreneur will see the startup grow and generate value without his direct work being needed.

The employee, when leaving the company, will only have the passive revenue stream of a unemployment pension that only lasts 2 years.

So it’s not the same.

Conclusion
As a closing cliche, I would say that between entrepreneurship and intrapreneurship, none of them are better, they’re different.
Aren’t you glad you read until the end?

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4 Comments to "Entrepreneurship in a big company"

  1. V V's Gravatar V V
    August 14, 2011 - 8:01 pm | Permalink

    Hi Vinh,

    I still remember we jumped into the enterpreneurship almost at the same time in 2008 or 2009. It was obviously not the right time to start a business. I failed, but I have no regret. Fighting for your family’s survival by your own is something very exciting and stressing at once.

    For sure, I will start another business sometime in the future although this time I will be more prepared. Today, I am trying to stockpile as much cash as I can in preparation for my future endeavour.

    Never give up bro!

  2. V V's Gravatar V V
    September 20, 2011 - 11:07 pm | Permalink

    Life’s cool. I really enjoy the change, till now.

    I don’t have any idea on how to become a millionaire quickly. Perhaps a lottery can help, but the result is not guaranteed.

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