Stepping Stones To Thrive In The New Era Of Innovation And Entrepreneurship

Skill sets that define the rate of survival for an entrepreneur


Innovation is the key factor impacting the business world and is increasingly catalysed by the omni-presence of the internet. The concept of entrepreneurship is steadily adapting and changing to meet the demands of the new technological dawn and the economic cycle. It is a lemon and lemonade theory today, which focuses on adapting a new age skillset with entrepreneurial skills for resilience. In order to elucidate the relevance of new age skills in this new era of entrepreneurship, Dr. Nancy Juneja was the speaker for MentorED, our weekly live 45-minute workshop where industry veterans share their knowledge and experience and discuss topics that are apt and relevant to the start-up and small business fraternity.

Dr. Nancy Juneja is an Educationist, highly acclaimed Success Coach and Leadership Mentor with more than fifteen years of experience. Sought out by numerous Educational Institutes, Corporates & Industries, she has been mentoring entrepreneurs, youths, corporate employees, coaching start-ups and providing quality skill education to the individuals and communities. Her initiative, MENTORx School of learning is all focused to inspire youth to lead a purpose driven life.

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Entrepreneurship has always been about versatility. Talking about the challenges, it is seeing the opportunity before anyone else.

In brief, the session had the following takeaways:

  • Scaling the stages of economic cycle
  • How to have an entrepreneurial mind
  • How digital economy has opened worldwide opportunities to succeed
  • New age skillset for ushering the new era
  • The entrepreneur mindset

The Entrepreneurial Mindset

Change being the only constant, for an entrepreneur too it is indispensable to evolve with circumstances. Be it economic adversity or one owing to the pandemic, there are new age skills that define the sustenance to thrive in this era of entrepreneurship. According to Dr. Nancy Juneja, “An entrepreneur identifies opportunity in every situation. He is the person with a vision, an audacious tech leader successful in bringing brilliant ideas to the market, an initiator who creates something new every moment and converts it into a business idea and the whole process as we gloriously call as entrepreneurship.” While it is important to survive, but more importantly it is necessary to thrive.

The digital transformation has been happening in a very rapid form for several years now but the COVID era reinstated it as the new norm. It is vital for each entrepreneur to believe in the notion that opportunity lies in the middle of difficulty. Innovation emerges as the norm and needs to be aligned according to the stages of the economic cycle. Thereafter, she listed the stages as – Boom (or the period of expansion with the rate of growth rising at a faster rate), Early Recession or Slowdown, Full Recession, Depression and Recovery.

The mentor touched upon the issues of the Indian economy and focussed on the skill sets that can make any entrepreneur bounce back and move ahead. “Entrepreneurship has always been about versatility. Talking about the challenges, it is seeing the opportunity before anyone else. It is much more in today’s world apart from critical thinking, effective communication, analysing your mindset, your patience and persistence. Being a digital entrepreneur, the empathy and the motive of value creation along with the social responsibility – there is much more which is needed in the long run.”

The indispensable skillsets that define an entrepreneur

From her own experience in being in the entrepreneurship arena for more than eighteen years, she urged on evolving and being a learning person throughout. It is the learning curve that defines the skill set. “It is moving ahead, continuously learning and unlearning to learn which is a powerful reminder given to each and everyone. Be it any number of years you are into the business – you need to be learning, testing, sharing, collaborating and in this mode, you need to think upon something to apply and discard.”

Decision making in the entrepreneurship journey is a paramount skill because a present approach determines the course of action in the future. Again, it is also important to stay calm in crisis and lead the team through the challenges. Dr. Juneja listed four means to achieve it –

  • Having an outsider approach to a problem
  • Remembering past obstacles that have been successfully overcome
  • Focusing on what can be done to get started
  • Keeping oneself motivated and entertained

Also, as exemplary as it stands, it is vital to prioritise team work by coordinating among different departments.

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The thumb rule is to innovate or evaporate. That is how it goes in today's world. It was the scenario earlier too but now we need to be ready. If option A is not working, we need to be ready with option B and so on and so forth.

Critical thinking – the route to sail through any adversity

The mentor then talked about critical thinking that allows one to develop intellectually and to make hard decisions as per the need of the hour. “Even if you feel that the circumstances are not in favour, you can manipulate the present and you can focus upon the future, it is all binding up your team and encouraging them. Being an entrepreneur is taking everyone along and focusing upon your goal. The thumb rule is to innovate or evaporate. That is how it goes in today’s world. It was the scenario earlier too but now we need to be ready. If option A is not working, we need to be ready with the option B and so on and so forth.”

Added to this is the introspection to ask oneself some questions like – Should I have a more agile supply chain? Can we make manufacturing more competitive in higher cost environments? How can supply chains pivot fast yet still be robust and resilient to the next disruption? Can I shift my supply chain to a new geography without huge cost or risk? Well, for all of these questions, digital transformation comes as the single loudest means to proceed.

Get MentorED With Dr. Nancy Juneja

An interactive session

During the Q&A session, viewers from YouTube, Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter took the opportunity to seek advice on various concepts and business challenges. Dr. Juneja addressed questions with her experiential insights. Topics varied from steps to revive business in the pandemic, techniques to make businesses processes more efficient, action points to solve challenges in rural, semi urban areas while pursuing digital avenues and upskilling with the new age entrepreneurial skills. Dr. Juneja’s guidance reflected her firsthand experience of working closely with entrepreneurs and giving a glimpse of her role as Vice President of the National Child and Women Development Council.

Thus, as the mentor elucidated through her informative presentation, the only option for an entrepreneur is to either innovate or evaporate. In a nutshell, it is all about developing the entrepreneurial mindset with a renewed perspective of creating your idea from the current problem and nourishing it gradually.

Watch the complete video on YouTube to know more of all the skillsets shared by the mentor in her presentation.

Abhilash Bapanasha
Abhilash Bapanasha
Abhilash is Assistant Editor at Dutch Uncles, an alumnus of Tezpur University, he writes on business, entrepreneurship, startup and its ecosystem. His expertise being live shows, live streaming, reporting and anchoring.

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