Photo: Henna Suortti.

Empowering Future Entrepreneurs


Entrepreneurship is the driving force of national economies around the world. It enables development and innovations all around the world. New businesses create a large proportion of innovative products and services which we use every day, and which change the way we live and work. Also, entrepreneurs can make communities more dynamic and vibrant. (GEM, 2022).

This is because entrepreneurs are in a state of constant interaction with their environment – they influence, and are influenced by it. Joseph Schumpeter has defined the modern entrepreneur as a person who by recognizing opportunities, destroys the existing economic order by introducing new products and services to the market. This idea forms the foundation for the concept of ‘creative destruction’ and is heavily used in the tech startup scene.

However, not all entrepreneurship is about radically changing the state of the existing markets. It might actually not be a good idea to think of entrepreneurial activities in only this frame. With a broader understanding, we can say that entrepreneurs and their drive can be found everywhere in the world in any firm – otherwise it would not be possible to survive, prosper and create jobs and additional value for our local communities and society.

Some form of value creation should be an outcome of running a business. For an entrepreneur, additional value is an applicable measure. And therefore we can say that in fact, they are an individual responsible for the process of creating new or added value, be it an innovation and/or a new organization (C. Bruyat & P.-A. Julien, 2001). This means, without an individual entrepreneur, additional value would not be created.

Recognizing Opportunities and Own Capabilities

Being an entrepreneur means starting and running your own business. These businesses can emerge in a variety of ways to suit a range of purposes, for example they can buy and sell products (from handicrafts to used cars), provide a service (from massages to singing classes), or create a new digital application to solve modern problems or just make life a little bit easier. The goal might be to create the next global business giant, provide a necessary service in a community, or simply just to make a living. (GEM, 2022).

Whatever business activities are undertaken and pursued, starting and growing an independent new venture is always a process that requires a certain set of skills and competences. Further, it requires the capacity of personal and professional reflection to recognize and utilize ones’ own capabilities to identify opportunities, innovativeness, creativeness, braveness, responsibility and initiative (Bygrave 1994, 2; Gartner 1990).

People starting businesses from scratch often benefit from practical examples and shared personal experiences from established entrepreneurs. Albeit, being an entrepreneur does pertain the process of trial and error, learning from the masters can save you from making the same unnecessary mistakes. Gaining wisdom and tips from experienced coaches is an effective way of learning the essentials of entrepreneurship and some of the required skills and competences.

Igniting Your Inner Entrepreneurial Spirit

The ‘Third Wave of Entrepreneurship’ project contributes to new business development in the South-Savo region by arranging trainings and events for aspiring entrepreneurs. One of the project’s experienced coaches, Tommi Talasto from Heromaker Ltd. was in charge of Summer Sprint training held in June 2022. The training aimed to ignite everyone’s inner entrepreneurial spirit.

“Inspiring and encouraging people is very important. You must keep on going despite the setbacks. I want to give a realistic picture about what being an entrepreneur is and what it takes to succeed”, Talasto sums up his coaching philosophy.

Emilio, who was a participant in the training, said that Talasto’s goal of delivering realistic encouragement was delivered. Emilio describes the main things he learned in the training:

“Entrepreneurship is all about taking risks – or rather possibilities. It is about trying new things. There is no need to be afraid because you can always get help from your network.”

You can learn more about the experiences of the participants by watching this video on the Summer Sprint training here.

In October, we are starting another training targeted to new entrepreneurs and business developers. Venture Hub training (in English) will provide the participants with Lean Startup methodology, coaching and network creation. Read more and sign up here: Venture Hub: Oct 26–Nov 23 (5–8 PM).

The Third Wave of Entrepreneurship project is funded by South-Savo Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment through the European Union Social Fund and contributes to new business development by arranging training and events for aspiring entrepreneurs (


Bruyat, C. & Julien, P.-A. 2001. Defining the Field of Research in Entrepreneurship. Journal of Business Venturing 169.

Bygrave, W.D. 1994. The entrepreneurial process. Teoksessa Bygrave, W.D. (eds.) The portable MBA in entrepreneurship, 1–25. New York: John Wiley & Sons.

Gartner, W.B. 1990. What are we talking about when we talk about entrepreneurship. Journal of Business Venturing 5 (1), 15–29.

N.N. 2022. Global Entrepreneurship Monitor, 2021/2022 Global Report, Opportunity Amid Disruption 29–31. Available: [accessed 1.9.2022].

Writer Elina Pöllänen

Pöllänen works as RDI Specialist at South-Eastern Finland University of Applied Sciences, Xentre Research and Education unit for Business and Innovations.