Is entrepreneurship in your blood?

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Brian was a ski boat and bluefin tuna angling pioneer in South Africa.

My son, who was working on a yacht in Europe, sent me a photograph of a tuna he had caught in the Adriatic Sea. He was thrilled because it was the first game fish he had caught out of South Africa. The tuna was most likely an Albacore which is a tuna species found in the Adriatic Sea.

It was fantastic to share the excitement from home with him as he told me about spotting the shoal of tuna while sailing in the Adriatic. He quickly got out a rod and reel with a spinner on it and cast into the shoal and hooked one.

What’s even more amazing is that Michael is sharing and living the excitement that his late grandfather Brian had for game fishing. Brian was one of the pioneers of big game fishing in South Africa, landing some of the largest Bluefin Tuna that have been ever seen on South Africa’s shores. In the late 60s he won the trophy from the Marlin & Tuna Club in Simon’s Town.

Three generations of sailors and fishermen. Brian served in the Navy in East London, me in Simon’s Town and now Michael is doing his apprentice as a yachtsman in Europe after receiving his training at a training facility near Durban harbour in KwaZulu-Natal. It seems that the sea runs in the family’s veins.

This got me to thinking about generational entrepreneurship. How often do families produce entrepreneurs? Will the first entrepreneur in the family sire new young entrepreneurs or could it skip a generation? But the real question is are entrepreneurs born or made?

We get to the old story of nature or nurture which basically means that the entrepreneurial spirit may course through a family”s generational veins but entrepreneurship may also be related to environment. In today’s economic climate and business environment with the proliferation of digital technology and Internet platforms the opportunity for entrepreneurship is higher in the post-industrial economy. However, entrepreneurs still are the “odd fellows” as they comprise a small percentage of the general population.

These days for anyone who wants to pursue an entrepreneurial venture, much training and opportunities are around. Entrepreneurship is taught through mentorship, at colleges and universities and the day will soon come when it is possibly a subject at schools.

Yet entrepreneurship begins with an idea – an idea for a product or service that can satisfy a hungry market. If you have ideas for starting something on your own from scratch, send an email and put your name down for “Breakthrough Ideas” a resource that will show you how.

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