Ideas can change life. And any new idea, no matter how big or small, should be able to drive innovation so that it transforms people’s lives, creates more jobs, and leads to overall growth. Education, despite being the largest contributor to employment generation in the country, receives very less attention from these innovators. As an entrepreneur, juggling too many things simultaneously, it isn’t easy to find like-minded people having the right set of skills and management to run a venture smoothly.
Research has shown that many degree-holders are considered unemployable as they lack the relevant and currently in-demand skill sets at the entry-level. Besides, the education sector in India has its own set of limitations that need to be overcome such as shortage of trained faculty, lack of practical knowledge and exposure, and poor infrastructure. These reasons have led to a demand-supply gap in the education system which is in turn making it difficult for students to transition from classrooms to the real world.
How Entrepreneurs Can Help
Entrepreneurs are adept at identifying opportunities even in adversities. Armed with the entrepreneurial mindset, these innovators can teach students how to infer from their surroundings to notice and see value in occasions and opportunities which are not visible to others. Entrepreneurship is all about being alert to the latent information present around rather than being in possession of an already available piece of information.
Learning from the experiences of entrepreneurs will give students the right exposure to the realistic world of uncertainty, failures, and struggles. The practical training makes learning fun, interactive, hands-on and less theoretical. As part of entrepreneurship education, students develop a problem-solving attitude as they indirectly resolve economic issues. By setting up ventures that address problems faced by the public, students are also able to create employment at various hierarchies. Therefore, learning entrepreneurial skills gives them an understanding of the economy. Combining studying with running a business is an effective way to ensure that students, upon graduating, hit the ground running.
Some ideas to bridge this demand-supply gap are:
- Government can collaborate with private companies so that the latter can take onboard interns/trainees and provide them with practical knowledge, exposure and experience within a particular sector of the economy.
- Establishing centres which would support the growth and skills of budding entrepreneurs. Focusing on education innovation will help balance the growing demand supply.
- Corporates can have their own residence programs where the companies invest in the training and development of newly hired employees. Fostering the growth of employees will make them productive and help in the advancement of the company.
- Entrepreneurs must act as counsellors to teachers and educators and the latter must be willing to learn from the industry to understand their needs. An education-business alliance can go a long way in shaping the leaders of tomorrow.
- Globalization and technology have revolutionized education as well as empowered entrepreneurs to create more businesses. These innovators must propagate their skills and encourage students to learn them by creating niche industries where the latter can develop in-depth knowledge of a particular field.
- Entrepreneurs must work in tandem with educational institutions to help redesign the curriculum and its delivery. They can also help promote the use of technology, teacher-training, international tie-ups, case study method of learning, and student exchanges.
The demand-supply gap is not a problem, rather an opportunity to develop the economy. Creating more entrepreneurs who can bridge this gap will in turn generate more employment. As large number of students drop out of high school, we have an occasion to address this shortcoming in the education system. Therefore, entrepreneurs need to take the onus for spreading awareness about the changing requirements of the industry and the market, preparing more students to follow in their footsteps.