We often hear the words entrepreneur and business owner used interchangeably, yet becoming an entrepreneur takes more than just business acumen and knowhow. That’s why at William Woods University students pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration online can choose entrepreneurial management as their concentration.
Beyond learning the ins and outs of starting and running a business, a concentration in entrepreneurial management will help students develop an entrepreneurial mindset — a boldness to think bigger, innovate, and put their ideas into action. Thus, in addition to standard undergraduate business coursework such as accounting, economics, management and marketing, this concentration includes online coursework in leadership, customer service, entrepreneurial taxation, human resources and more.
But what makes an entrepreneur different from a business owner?
In his Forbes article, Gene Marks, a writer of six small-business management books, explains that there are significant differences between the two. For example, entrepreneurs tend to take bigger risks than business owners. They challenge the status quo and are often attracted to inventions, science and new technology as a means to change the world. They may thrive in a chaotic atmosphere, often multitasking between multiple big ideas. They see their companies as assets and think bigger, where as business owners are more sentimental about their business and prefer a more streamlined approach to business management. Similarly, entrepreneurs are rarely driven by money, where as business owners see their business as the means for their livelihood.
Also, according to a survey of small-business owners conducted by The Hartford, an investment and insurance company, 61 percent of respondents said that there is a difference between being an entrepreneur and being a business owner. The majority of those who identified as small-business owners described themselves as doing something they feel passionate about and enjoy. In contrast, the majority of those who identified as entrepreneurs described themselves as being innovative, visionary and looking for the next opportunity.
Regardless of the mentioned differences, it’s important to remember that being an entrepreneur is not better or worse than being a business owner. The two are simply different styles of running a business and seeing an idea through. For example, Marks happily attributes the title of a business owner to himself and draws stark differences between his business success and his father’s entrepreneurial failures.
William Woods University also offers a Master of Business Administration (MBA) in Entrepreneurial Leadership.