Archive for October, 2013

How to be unremarkably average

Tuesday, October 29th, 2013

Fedge’s sobering anti-advice on how to be unremarkable. Click to enlarge:


Silicon Africa on the African diaspora

Monday, October 28th, 2013

“I want to start a business back home, but everything is political in Africa. If you don’t have connections, your business could be crushed and closed at any time by officials.”

In “The Top 10 Fears of African Diaspora About Africa,” Mawuna Remarque Koutonin explains why most of the 30 million Africans who have left Africa are worried about returning home. “70% of African graduates in the diaspora are willing to return to build Africa,” she writes, but realistic fears prevent them from doing so.

See also our Kaizen interview with Senegalese-American entrepreneur Magatte Wade about her own journey and Africa’s challenges.

Shawn Klein on the Biogenesis Scandal

Thursday, October 24th, 2013


At his blog, The Sports Ethicist, Dr. Shawn Klein explores the ethical issues at play in the recent Biogenesis performance-enhancing drug scandal in major league baseball. Dr. Klein’s post was later linked to by Sports Illustrated columnist Phil Taylor.

Robert Lawson to speak at Rockford University

Tuesday, October 22nd, 2013

lawsonrobertDr. Robert Lawson is co-author of the widely-used Economic Freedom of the World, which “uses 42 distinct pieces of data to measure economic freedom in 141 nations.” He will speak at Rockford University on October 23.

Professor Lawson teaches at Southern Methodist University in Texas, where he is the Jerome M. Fullinwider Endowed Centennial Chair in Economic Freedom. Previously, he earned his B.S. in economics from the Honors Tutorial College at Ohio University and his M.S. and Ph.D. in economics from Florida State University.

Professor Lawson’s talk is sponsored by the Center for Ethics and Entrepreneurship. More about Dr. Lawson here.

Stephen Hicks on 13 arguments for liberal capitalism in 13 minutes

Monday, October 14th, 2013

The thirteen arguments are:
1. Liberal capitalism increases freedom.
2. People work harder in liberal capitalist systems.
3. People work smarter under liberal capitalism.
4. Liberalism increases individuality and creativity.
5. Liberal capitalism increases the average standard of living.
6. The poor are better off under liberal capitalism.
7. Liberal capitalism generates more philanthropy.
8. More outstanding individuals flourish under liberal capitalism.
9. Liberalism’s individualism increases happiness.
10. Liberal capitalist societies are more interesting.
11. Tolerance increases under liberal capitalism.
12. Sexism and racism decrease under capitalism.
13. Liberal capitalism leads to international peace.

And here is the full playlist at YouTube.

Forbes on the Acton MBA

Saturday, October 12th, 2013

Forbes columnist Michael Noer has a nice feature on the Acton MBA — “Startup School: An MBA Designed For Entrepreneurs, Not I-Bankers.”

acton-whiteActon is unique because of “its relentless focus on a single goal: educating aspiring entrepreneurs. The curriculum discards the traditional M.B.A. silos of finance, accounting and marketing to revolve around the entrepreneurial cycle of creating, growing and selling a business.”

Here is our Kaizen interview with Acton’s founder, Jeff Sandefer. The Acton method is now also in place at the Universidad Francisco Marroquín.

Audio edition of “What Business Ethics Can Learn from Entrepreneurship”

Friday, October 11th, 2013

An audio edition [mp3] of Stephen Hicks’s 2009 essay “What Business Ethics Can Learn from Entrepreneurship” [pdf], first published in Journal of Private Enterprise.

The abstract: Entrepreneurship is increasingly studied as a fundamental and foundational economic phenomenon. It has, however, received less attention as an ethical phenomenon. Much contemporary business ethics assumes its core application purposes to be (1) to stop predatory business practices and (2) to encourage philanthropy and charity by business. Certainly predation is immoral and charity has a place in ethics, neither should be the first concerns of ethics. Instead, business ethics should make fundamental the values and virtues of entrepreneurs — i.e., those self-responsible and productive individuals who create value and trade with others to win-win advantage.

All versions of the essay:
* “What Business Ethics Can Learn from Entrepreneurship” [pdf]. Journal of Private Enterprise, 24(2), Spring 2009, 49-57.
* Also available online at the Social Science Research Network.
* At Amazon in Kindle e-book version.
* Translated into Serbo-Croatian by Alma Causevic.
* Translated into Spanish by Walter Jerusalinsky.
* Audio edition in MP3 format and at YouTube.

Thanks to Christopher Vaughan for his work on the audio production.

Kaizen 27: The Enrique Duhau interview

Wednesday, October 9th, 2013

Entrepreneurial Agriculture

The latest issue of Kaizen [pdf] features my interview with entrepreneur Enrique Duhau. We met in Buenos Aires to discuss the challenges of doing business in Argentina’s complicated political economy, k27-coverMr. Duhau’s experience in co-founding Apple Argentina, Maxim Software, ESEADE, and Junior Achievement Argentina, as well as the character traits necessary for success in entrepreneurship.

Also featured in this issue of Kaizen are guest speaker Terry Noel, the High School Entrepreneurship Day, and the accomplishments of Rockford University student Jennifer Harrolle.

Print copies of Kaizen are in the mail to the Center for Ethics and Entrepreneurship‘s supporters and are available at Rockford University.

Our next issue will feature an extended interview with Surse Pierpoint on the theme of Entrepreneurial Logistics in Panama.

More Kaizen interviews with leading entrepreneurs are the CEE site here.

Interview with entrepreneur John Chisholm

Monday, October 7th, 2013

Silicon Valley entrepreneur John Chisholm visited Rockford University recently, during which Stephen Hicks interviewed him about the themes from his “Unleash Your Inner Company” talk. Topics:

* What values motivate entrepreneurs — freedom, security, opportunities unique to each of us.
* Flow — how passion and perseverance can and should work together.
* Personal psychology and making positive thinking habitual.
* Entrepreneurs as leaders and what to look for when hiring the key members of your team.
* The right and wrong times to seek funding.
* The ethics of entrepreneurship’s positive value creation.

Here is their 18-minute discussion:

In his talk and workshop, Chisholm used this worksheet with the participants: “STAARRS. Skills, Technologies, Assets, Accomplishments, Relationships, Reputation, Strengths” [Word] and [PDF]. This 2010 interview with Chisholm for Kaizen may also be of interest.