Innovation and risk management are key skills that every entrepreneur must possess. Innovation refers to the process of coming up with new ideas. Risk management on the other hand is the process of assessing and prioritizing the risk in business and then coming up with means of using resources to minimize these risks. The innovation and risk management module was, therefore, developed for the purpose of equipping students with knowledge and skills on such methods of managing risks in the business environment and ways of coming up with and managing innovations from different perspectives in the business world (Katz & Green, 2007).
Benefits of the Module
At the end of the module, the student is equipped with knowledge on pervasive issues which include; first sustainability. This is the basis for business continuity. Second is globalization and diversity. This enables the entrepreneur to have a wider outlook of the business. Third is business innovation and creativity. A successful entrepreneur must come up with new ideas that have not existed in the market, whether it is new goods, new methods of production or new markets. Finally is enterprise development. This is an approach of ensuring continuous growth and development of enterprises systematically (Katz & Green, 2007)
The module also equips the students with intellectual and risk management skills. These skills include being able to think critically and creatively. The learner can then manage this creative process not only for themselves but also for other. With this, they can analyze and identify assumptions and prove false logic. They will also be able to evaluate information based on evidence and not assumptions. Risk management skills are very critical as risks are constantly present in the business environment. By analyzing the risk management performed by different organization, the learner gets skills on identification, measurement and management of risks such as financial risks (Katz & Green, 2007).
Finally, the learner acquires professional practical skills and transferrable skills. The learner develops skills to work in teams. This is very important in the business environment. They are able to recognized individual strengths in the team and utilize this contributions. Similarly they can influence others in the team who do not perform well. On top of this, the learner develops effective communication skills suing a variety of media which includes preparation of business reports. Finally, the learner develops high personal effectiveness. Self-awareness is important in management of business as one is able to manage themselves, time and recognize the diversity of the people in that environment (Katz & Green, 2007)
Challenges of the Module
The first challenge of the module is that it is too wide. It involves several crucial concept such as globalization, creativity, enterprise development, customer expectations, sustainability, business policy and strategy, risk management, corporate social responsibility, just to mention but a few. The learner must acquire all this concepts. This result to a knowledge overload and sometimes the learner ends up acquiring very little and only reading to pass examinations, after which the knowledge is lost (Katz & Green, 2007)
Finally, some of the skills taught in the unit are not teachable, rather, they are individual’s personal traits. For instance, creativity. In addition to this, the risks faced in the real world always come in different forms and as such, there is no clear design of risk management that can be applied in all risks. This demands that the learner must be sharp in order to apply the concepts taught in the module to the real world (Katz & Green, 2007)
Katz, J. A., & Green, R. P. (2007). Entrepreneurial small business (Vol. 200). New York: McGraw-Hill/Irwin.