Teaching companies how to be entrepreneurial: culture change at all levels


Article originally published on EmeraldInsight. Co-authored by David Knowles, Michael Langhammer, Rebecca Gagliardi, Laura Hougaz and Professor Murray Gillin.

Purpose

This case study aims to show how a strategic intervention, using an in-house delivered university entrepreneurship education program, cultivates an entrepreneurial mindset and effective innovation culture amongst company staff. The intervention produces a measured change in staff decision making style from analytical to a more intuitive style. Also assessed is the resulting management-style change to the firm’s internal environment, strategic motivation and performance.

Design/methodology/approach

Through a qualitative longitudinal study of Partners and staff in the firm, the authors measure the impact of the selection, integration and performance of in-house entrepreneurship education on firm culture.

Findings

The authors identify organisation factors that inhibit staff entrepreneurial behaviour and by integrating an in-house education intervention, demonstrate unambiguously the resultant effective culture and entrepreneurial mindset.

Research limitations/implications

Generalising results from this single longitudinal case study requires caution. The positive outcome from the in-house education concept can be considered for further evaluation within other organisations.

Practical implications

Using an entrepreneurial health-audit to assess in-firm cultural behaviour enables management to identify factors fostering/inhibiting entrepreneurial activity and devise interventions to cultivate a firm-wide entrepreneurial mindset.

Originality/value

In-house education is not a new concept, but a targeted focus on entrepreneurship applied strategically to a committed firm shows outstanding results. The added-value is in the demonstrated enhancement to effective innovation outcomes.

Read the full article here

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