In order to find jobs in a rapidly changing world, individuals require technical knowledge. They cannot, however, rely on a skillset alone if they hope to enjoy fulfilling careers.
Individuals need a mindset that adds “know-why” to technical “know-how” to contribute to the success of their colleagues and employers, as well as to create value for others.
An entrepreneurial mindset is key to personal and professional success. Engineers equipped with this mindset understand the bigger picture and, therefore, can recognize opportunities, evaluate markets, and learn from their mistakes. These engineers are capable of more than solving technical problems; they are constantly looking for unexpected ways to create value.
An entrepreneurial mindset consists of three key elements: Curiosity, Connections, and Creating Value. Entrepreneurially minded individuals:
- have a constant curiosity about our changing world and employ a contrarian view of accepted solutions;
- habitually connect information from many sources to gain insight and manage risk; and
- create value for others from unexpected opportunities as well as persist through, and learn from, failure.
After recognizing the importance of the entrepreneurial mindset, our Entrepreneurial Engineering Program created the Kern Entrepreneurial Engineering Network (KEEN), a collaborative partnership of colleges and universities dedicated to graduating engineers with an entrepreneurial mindset so they can create personal, economic, and societal value through a lifetime of meaningful work.