Step 3: Personal entrepreneurial competencies (PECS)

The third thesis is closely connected to the second, but warrants its own discussion. While it may seem that micro and small-sized enterprises (the kinds of startups that young people are likely to have) can easily run and market themselves due to their size, knowing business skills to do so is not a given — quite the contrary. Beyond specific issues such as accounting and copyright, there are basic business practices and principles that need fostering.

UNIDO research on start-ups shows that the biggest challenge in continuity seems to come after the initial incubation and first projects, when first hardships are faced (financial or other challenges). This requires strong leadership skills, confidence, and self-reliance — traits that can be practiced. At the same time, one of the main causes of failure is that there is no market for the product offered, and because their business model was not viable. This points to the urgent need for innovations and youth entrepreneurs to understand their market and be able to systematically plan their revenue sources.

GESCI-AKE model curriculum for developing entrepreneurial competences relies on a behavioral approach to entrepreneurship. This is a practical approach that help participants develop Personal Entrepreneurial Competencies (PEC) while doing, as opposed to attending lectures. The GESCI-AKE model works to develop the following attitudes: Opportunity-seeking behavior, Taking calculated risks, Persistence, Demand for efficiency and quality, Fulfilling commitments, Information seeking, Goal-setting and Self-confidence.

In addition, the rise of social entrepreneurship and social innovation as a business model may be a very attractive alternative for young entrepreneurs in creative medial. There is clearly a political trend to favor and support activities, big or small, that position themselves as innovators of social value.