The School of Entrepreneurship at a local university did not come out of the business school. While this surprised me, the professor explained such a school couldn’t have come from the business school because the business school approach is to look at the past, examine case studies, and interpret the future based on what they’ve seen. Entrepreneurship requires a different approach. It does not ground itself in the past, but dreams without boundaries and thinks of what could be.
The appoach of the School of Entrepreneurship made me question my approach to life. It also made me look at other groups with an equally discerning eye:
What about my family?
What about the places I've work?
What about our nation or my political party?
What about the place in which I worship?
What is the dominant approach? Do we look to the past in order to look ahead, or do we walk into the future with no thought of what has been? Both approaches have benefits and limitations, but the School of Entrepreneurship example made me keenly aware of the dangers of beginning with the past.
The following words have been printed on the rear view mirror of any car made in the last few decades: “Objects in the mirror are closer than they appear.” They remind me how helpful it would be if our perspectives came with equally clear reminders:
Memories may seem bigger than they actually were . . .
People may seem bigger than they actually were . . .
Certainties may appear firmer than they actually were . . .
Such thoughts are as disconcerting as they are freeing. I am convinced that Truth lies somewhere in the middle of the various channel markers through which we try to navigate. I’ve also come to accept that we will encounter it only as passers by. We will never be able to hold it in our hands, or place it in the hands of others, but we will occasionally drift past it and, hopefully, gasp.
For that I am grateful.