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[Course title]
[Document subtitle]
Dr. Rome B. Moralista
Instr. Revenlie G. Galapin
College of Business and Management
Module in EE1: Entrepreneurial Leadership
Module 1
Introduction to Entrepreneurial Leadership
This module presents the introduction to entrepreneurial leadership. This will tackle its
definitions and the different contexts. Also in will dwell on its importance and
characteristics making the students understand the value of leadership in an
After this lesson, students will be able to:
define entrepreneurial leadership
give importance of entrepreneurial leadership
identify the four contexts of entrepreneurial leadership
discuss the 10 Entrepreneurial Leadership Characteristics
Lesson Subject Matter or Concepts to be learned
- Definition of Entrepreneurial Leadership
- Importance of entrepreneurial leadership
- Contexts of entrepreneurial leadership
- Entrepreneurial Leadership Characteristics
- Six Habits of Effective Entrepreneurial Leadership
Everyone has one: someone who was motivating, collaborative, and kept the team
moving toward a common goal. Perhaps this person had the authority of being a
traditional leader, a boss or coach, for example. Or, it could be a peer who stepped up
during an important project and thrived despite uncertainty and ambiguity.
Chances are, part of what made this person so effective was that they were
an entrepreneurial leader.
When faced with the unknown, the best entrepreneurial leaders are good at
experimenting, learning, and iterating. Compare this skillset to a more traditional
“analyze, then act” leadership approach, and the difference is clear. A conventional
leader might be great at assembling a puzzle when the picture is laid out to copy, while
an entrepreneurial leader can dive in with no picture at all to start putting pieces
Module 1//Moralista&Galapin 2020
Module in EE1: Entrepreneurial Leadership
Defining Entrepreneurial Leadership
“Entrepreneurial leadership
is a mindset that focuses organizations on turning problems into opportunities
that create economic and social value,” says Babson College President Stephen
Spinelli Jr. MBA’92, PhD.
For Professor Jay Rao, entrepreneurial leadership goes hand in hand with
a relentless optimism about the world. “Entrepreneurial leaders are not just risk
managers; they are ambidextrous and are experts at navigating uncertainty,” he
says. “They have a positive outlook about the future, as they are always trying to
improve things.”
Babson professor and researcher Nan Langowitz says the key is an openness to
learning, and being able to mobilize others in your organization to do the same.
“The best leaders are learners,” she says. “The more you can develop a learning
mentality, the better you’ll be at staying open to hearing new ideas, considering
contrary points of view, and arriving at improved decisions.”
Like entrepreneurs, entrepreneurial leaders are made, not born. It’s a muscle
that can be developed with time and practice. According to D.R. Widder
MBA’99, Babson’s vice president of innovation, budding entrepreneurial leaders
share a handful of common characteristics:
 Entrepreneurial leaders want to solve problems collaboratively
 Entrepreneurial leaders value action and are outcomes-oriented
 Entrepreneurial leaders believe that things can be better, and that they
can make an impact
In 2004, Chris Roebuck defined entrepreneurial leadership as “organizing a group
of people to achieve a common goal using proactive entrepreneurial behavior
by optimizing risk, innovating to take advantage of opportunities, taking personal
responsibility and managing change within a dynamic environment for the
benefit of [an] organization”.
Entrepreneurial leaders may work within a formalized organization structure. But
they use the skills and approaches associated with successful entrepreneurs.
Why do we need Entrepreneurial Leadership?
- To keep up with the swift pace of change in the world, we need forward
thinking, creativity and innovative ideas.
- In today’s fast-changing world, leaders need to be agile. You need to be able
to make decisions quickly, take action and learn from the results. You need to
anticipate the future, respond to unforeseen circumstances and adapt to
- In other words, entrepreneurial leadership is like white water rafting. To ride the
waves of change, you need a strong sense of purpose and motivation. You
need a committed and effective team. And you need the agility to respond
quickly and change direction when needed.
- And for that reason, entrepreneurial leadership is not just for startups. It’s for all
Module 1//Moralista&Galapin 2020
Module in EE1: Entrepreneurial Leadership
4 Contexts for Entrepreneurial Leadership
There are four contexts which need different types of entrepreneurial leadership.
1. Starting a new venture. Start-ups are what we normally associate with entrepreneurs
and entrepreneurial leadership. For a start-up to be successful, leaders need to spot
gaps in the market, identify new opportunities and engage teams and investors. They
have to operate differently to big organizations because they don’t have the same
resources. They have to rely on low-cost experiments, teams and partnering.
2. Social ventures. Social ventures are similar to start-ups but their main purpose is meeting
unaddressed social or economic needs. Leaders in social ventures need to spend more
time on partnerships. They need to develop relationships with the community, the
government and NGOs.
3. Family enterprise. Leaders in a family business have to focus on the parallel challenges
of family and business. They need to evolve the organization so that it responds to the
changing market as well as transferring to the next generation.
4. Achieving organizational innovation. Even large organizations need to innovate if they
are going to survive and thrive in a changing world. There needs to be a strong
alignment between strategy and culture. And that is only achieved through
entrepreneurial leadership that enables creativity and change.
No matter what context you’re operating in, entrepreneurial leadership will be central
to your growth. Developing leadership skills helps develop talent, roll out new products
and services, deliver efficiency and gain market share
Ten Entrepreneurial Leadership Characteristics
Entrepreneurial leadership involves organizing and motivating a group of people to
achieve a common objective through innovation, risk optimization, taking advantage
of opportunities, and managing the dynamic organizational environment.
The traditional corporate mindset has its focus on systems and processes, whereas the
entrepreneurial style is more risk oriented.
Some of the common entrepreneurial leadership characteristics are as follows.
1. Communication skills
The leader is able to clearly articulate their ideas, and the plan to achieve common
goals. They encourage communication between departments and across levels. They
avoid ambiguities and generalizations, and are able to avoid conflict and
misunderstanding due to poor communication.
2. Vision
A successful entrepreneurial leader has a clear vision. He knows exactly where he wants
to go and how to get there. They communicate their vision to the team and work with
them to make the vision a reality.
3. Supportive
An entrepreneurial leader realizes the importance of initiative and reactiveness, and
Module 1//Moralista&Galapin 2020
Module in EE1: Entrepreneurial Leadership
they go out of their way to provide all the support that the team needs to achieve their
goals. The leader usually does not punish employees when they take a calculated risk
which misfires. Instead, they sit down with employees to analyze what went wrong and
work with them to correct the mistakes.
4. Self-belief
The leader has tremendous belief in themselves and has confidence gained from years
of experimenting, at times failing, and learning. They are aware of their strengths and
weaknesses, and demonstrate their skills without hubris. An entrepreneurial leader is very
5. Shares success
When the team or the organization succeeds at something, the leader does not hog
the limelight or take all the credit. They acknowledge the contribution of others and
shares the accolades with them.
6. Involved
You will not find an entrepreneurial leader cooped up in the office. Leaders like to
spend time among employees, walk around the factory or department, interact with
everyone, and see them doing their job. This leader will usually take some time out to
informally chat with employees, and understand their work and personal challenges.
7. Create an atmosphere conducive to growth
With a deep understanding of the importance of other people’s contribution to
organizational success, the entrepreneurial leader creates an atmosphere that
encourages everyone to share ideas, grow, and thrive. They actively seek other’s
opinions, and encourages them to come up with solutions to the problems that they
face. The entrepreneurial leader also provides positive feedback when employees
come forward with an opinion.
8. Honesty
Honesty is the most important quality of an exceptional leader. Entrepreneurial leaders
who are honest are able to quickly win the trust of their employees. People respect
leaders to come across as honest, and are more likely to accept positive or negative
feedback and also work harder.
9. Perseverance
When the going gets tough, the entrepreneurial leader perseveres. True entrepreneurs
simply don’t quit; they keep going till they find what they’re looking for.
10. Learning
The leader not only invests significantly in learning and updating their knowledge, but
they also create a learning environment in the organization encouraging others to
improve their knowledge, widen their experience, and tackle multiple challenges. They
encourage employees to think outside the box and come up with creative solutions to
Module 1//Moralista&Galapin 2020
Module in EE1: Entrepreneurial Leadership
Six Habits of Effective Entrepreneurial Leadership
Here’s what it takes to be an entrepreneurial leader.
1. Know yourself. -- Entrepreneurial leaders know who they are and what is
meaningful to them. They have a purpose in life and work, knowing why they
started their companies and why they lead them. They understand how their
businesses fit into their industry and their community.
2. Have a vision and be able to articulate it. – An entrepreneur leader must have a
vision of what his or her business is all about: what it does, how it serves its
stakeholders and where it is going. The vision cannot be vague. An
entrepreneurial leader must be able to articulate this vision, so that others are
inspired and will join together to work together for a common goal.
3. Develop employees and help them grow. – Entrepreneurial leaders are
committed to the people who work for them. They help employees develop their
own talents and skills. Employees make a commitment to you, when you make a
commitment to them. An entrepreneurial leader also knows that it’s essential to
help employees grow, so that the business can flourish into the future.
4. Listen carefully. – Entrepreneurial leaders always listen to employees, clients,
mentors, and others. They make decisions based not only on their own
understanding of the facts and situations, but also based on what they are
hearing from a variety of sources. Therefore, they not only create productive
workplaces, but they provide clients and customers with the products and
services they need and demand.
5. Implement new ideas. – An entrepreneurial leader is willing to innovate and take
risks -- in good times and bad. The business climate is always changing. Being
flexible and finding opportunities to launch a new initiative, a new strategy, a
new product or service is key to business success.
6. Take good care of yourself and stay curious. – Entrepreneurial leaders take time
for themselves and for being with family and friends. They relish vacations,
hobbies and interests outside of work. An entrepreneurial leader needs time for
contemplation -- to be able to see his or her business through a different lens. But
7. Most importantly, they stay curious. An entrepreneurial leader is always interested
in what is going on in the world and never stops learning.
Module 1//Moralista&Galapin 2020