First, let us start knowing by understanding what an entrepreneur is…
An entrepreneur is someone who identifies an opportunity, converts it into a product or a service, estimates its earnings/profit while building a successful business with it.
A technopreneur is one who starts off with just an idea. They look at existing systems and think of how it might be done better or differently. They use technology to help them create a product or solution to change the way something was done; a good example of this is Uber, who has changed the taxi industry drastically.
A Technopreneurship requires a lot of people to function as a team to make it function properly. You need smart people who are driven, creative, tech-savvy and don’t mind taking a risk.
Technopreneurship is also not as much about money but that the idea is one worthy to pursue and works for the greater common good. Because of this Technopreneurship can be an expensive venture, often times needing to work without pay until enough money starts rolling in, to be able to take a draw.
It takes a different breed of person to be able to do this. One that doesn’t mind risk, perseveres through challenges, able to lead a team, find investors to support the idea, pitches the idea over and over again, and be able to hear no, without letting that stop them.
With these people, their past work experience and their network become one of their greatest assets
Often technopreneurship begins with the customer experience and works backward to arrive at the technology to provide that customer experience. For example, Instagram was born out of the end-users feverish and narcissistic need to not only to take pictures but also to share these pictures in real time.
A technopreneur will as a whole be constantly learning, improving, innovating and disrupting the workings of people in organizations and nations, much like Facebook or WhatsApp, on your phone, which has changed much of how we do things. Think back before these ever existed.
In this space, the waters have been tested which has shown us that technology can address the needs of customers.
Technopreneurs all over the world are pushing the envelope of innovation. Imagine the changes we will see, areas where cutting-edge work is being done:
- Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, and Expert System
- 3D Printing
- Blockchain beyond Bitcoins, Distributed Ledger and Decentralized Data Base
- The Internet of Things. This is something that has already reached our living rooms with Amazon’s Alexa, Echo etc.
- Augmented Reality, expanding virtual reality, as we know.
All of this is very exciting and if you are looking at getting into this space, what are some things that could help you?
Here are some guidelines you can follow.
- Experiment Now (Elon Musk failed many times until he thrilled the world)
- Develop an Integrated and coordinated Digital Strategy. Everything is not what everyone needs.
- Continuously update your skills.
- Recognize that these changes are gaining traction worldwide.
- Be Bold and expect a burn rate that may baffle you.
- Engage with Younger Staff and Customers in a reverse mentoring model
- Integrate technology carefully and not hastily but thoroughly.
Keep in mind a technopreneur, needs to be distinct or become extinct
This is not an option, a technopreneur is wired to take the pass less trodden and do radically different things I order to change the course of the world.
Sonia Rina Davies is a passionate entrepreneur, speaker, author, and personal development coach. She is an outspoken advocate of the free market economy and has helped countless clients identify their core values, envision and realize goals that resonate with those values. She oversees several businesses both online and offline.