Entrepreneurs play a predominant role in accelerating the socio-economic development of a country. They are regarded as nation builders and wealth creators. They are the change agents who initiate economic activities to create wealth. They undertake the business initiative, employ themselves in that business and open up employment avenues for others.
Therefore, the role of entrepreneur is of fundamental importance to a country like India where the twin problems of poverty and unemployment coexist.
During the early sixties, the small scale sector was considered as exclusively an employment generating sector, but gradually this sector began to be recognized as the crucial tool for tapping
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Concept of EDP
Considering the importance of small scale industries in employment creation and economic development, the Government of India envisaged promotional packages to facilitate setting up of new enterprises.
In order to bring about entrepreneurial growth, the policy mailers and financial institutions started thinking in terms of imbibing entrepreneurship culture through training interventions.
Thus, Entrepreneurship Development Programmes (EDPs) Corporation (GIIC) and other agencies who have organized a three-month entrepreneurship development programme in late sixties.
The programme was conducted for a selective group of energetic and potential entrepreneurs who had the willingness and desire to achieve the goal set by them.
The objectives laid down for the above programmes were as follows:
- To set up small scale ventures.
- To manage them effectively.
- To earn adequate profit from these ventures.
- To undertake personal responsibility of the business
It has been found out that ‘n Ach’ factor developed by David McClelland, the renewed behavioural scientist, is the most important quality for entrepreneurial development.
In order to prove that the need for achievement could be induced, he conducted an experiment in collaboration with the erstwhile Small Industries Extension and Training Institute (SIET) of Hyderabad at Kakinada, Andhra Pradesh. Young persons were selected and put through rigorous training for a period of three months to guide them to set new goals.
The achievement motivation has a positive impact upon their task performance. The Kakinada experiment could be treated as an important basis for the present-day EDP inputs on behavioral aspects.
In later stage, Achievement Motivation Training (AMT) has become an integral part of EDP course curriculum. Institutes like SISI, NISIET, SIDO and TCOs came forward conduct EDPs and national level organizations like Entrepreneurship Development Institute (EDI) of India, Ahmadabad and National Institute for Entrepreneurship and Small Business programmes.
According to a study conducted by NIESBUD, at present, as many as 686 odd organizations, including the state level organizations like IEDs/CEDs, are organizing EDPs in the country.
Objectives of EDPs
The important objectives of Entrepreneurship Development Programmes (EDPs) can be stated as follows:
- Accelerating industrial development by enlarging the supply of entrepreneurs.
- Developing entrepreneurial qualities and motivating prospective entrepreneurs to achieve the goal.
- Enhancing the growth of small-and medium-scale enterprise sectors which offer better potential for employment generation and dispersal of the industrial unit.
- Providing productive self-employment avenues to a large number of educated and low educated young men and women coming out of schools and colleges.
- Improving performance of small-and medium-scale industries by the supply of carefully selected and trained entrepreneurs and diversifying sources of entrepreneurship.
- Enterprise development in rural and no-industry areas where local entrepreneurship is not really available and entrepreneurs from nearby towns are not easily lured.
Indian EDP Model
There is a saying that entrepreneurs are the products of nature and culture. of course, this is very much true in the Indian context. Apart from nature and culture, the role of nurture is very much significant for human resource development.
The myth that entrepreneurs are born and not made has no longer been accepted. Ordinary persons can be turned into successful entrepreneurs though well-designed training programmes conducted by the Entrepreneurship Development institutes. The term nurture here implies the training intervention which is a real endeavor towards human resource development, especially entrepreneurial development.
The Entrepreneurial Development Programmes, therefore, are based upon well-designed and integrated modular packages to but to the needs of the budding entrepreneurs. The training level follows more or less the same principle in organizing Entrepreneurial Development Programmes.
In the present context, EDPs are usually conducted for four to six weeks and the curriculum adopted by the above institutes for imparting training is also apparently uniform.
Phases of EDPs
The EDPs normally pass through following three important phases:
• Pre-training phase
• Training phase
• Post-training or follow-up phase
This phase is the preparatory phase for launching the programmes. It includes a number of activities, which are as follows:
- Identification of operationally-promising area, normally a district.
- Selection of a project leader/course coordinator to coordinate the programme.
- Arrangement of infrastructural facilities for the programme.
- Undertaking potential industrial survey/environmental scanning for identification of good business opportunities.
Planning the programmes on various fronts such as:
- Promotional campaigns through either with the help of print or electric media, leaflets, posters, etc.
- Establishing contacts with business personalities, NGOs and related agencies which can contribute to the program both directly and indirectly.
- Getting the application forms printed and making them available at different centers along with instructions.
- Forming selection committee for selecting the trainees.
- Preparing the budget, obtaining administrative sanctions and organizing other activities which from a part of EDP.
- Preparing and finalizing the need-based inputs in training syllabus and to tie u with guest faculties to impart training.
- Contacting the support agencies like DICs, SFCs, SISI, banks, NSIC, District Magistrate, etc. to receive support in implementing the programme.
- Organizing industrial motivational campaigns to mobilize as much number of applications as possible.
Training potential entrepreneurs are providing them proper guidance for setting up enterprise constitutes the cornerstone of EDP. Most of the Entrepreneurship Development institutes generally conduct training programmes of 4-6 weeks duration on full time basis.
Post-training phase is otherwise known as the phase of follow-up support. During this phase, post-training support services are rendered to the participants who have successfully completed the Entrepreneurship Development Programme (EDP).
This is because of the fact that, very often, the potential entrepreneur after undergoing the training confronts a number of problems while implementing the action plan for grounding the project.
So during this phase, the training organization helps the entrepreneur in sorting out the problems through counseling support. A committee is formed consisting of members generally drafted from the leading bank of the district, State Financial Corporation, training organization and above all, the District Industries Centre to help the entrepreneurs with the following objectives during the follow-up:
- To provide a meaningful direction to the trainees in grounding their enterprise.
- To review the progress made by the trainees in the implementation of the project.
- To review the post-training approach.
- To provide escort services to the trainees by involving financial institutions and promotional agencies
Usually, follow-up action meetings are organized thrice a year after the completion of training and the following methods are generally used for follow-up:
- Postal questionnaire
- Telephonic follow-up
- Personal contact by the trainer
- Group meetings
Problems of EDPs
The low level of performance is usually attributed to the following problems involved in organizing and conducting EDP trainings:
- Shortage of adequate number of specialized and committed organizations.
- Insufficient trainer motivators to motivate people for undergoing EDPs and to impart training.
- Identification and selection of wrong projects.
- Lack of entrepreneurial and culture.
- Apathetic attitude of the support agencies like banks and financial institutions to support entrepreneurs.
- Lack of forward and backward linkages.
- Selection of wrong person for training.
- Improper identification of projects.
- Inadequate counseling support after training.
- Lack of continuous follow-up action or post-training support services for grounding the project.
Criteria for Assessment or Evaluation of EDPs
Following criteria are being used by the behavioral scientists to assess the effectiveness of EDPs in the country:
- New enterprise creation
- Employment generation in quantifiable terms
- Creation of job opportunities both directly and indirectly
- Increase in sales and profit
- Enterprise expansion
- Enterprise transformation
- Improvement in quality of product or services
- Repayment of loans.