Theory E²: Working with Entrepreneurs in Closely-Held Enterprises–VII. The Thoughtful Entrepreneur
The thoughtful entrepreneur also tends to look for technical expertise and wants people around who know what they are doing. Visionaries often have compelling but impractical dreams precisely because they are not aware of what is feasible. Wheatley describes a thoughtful executive’s perfect setting when she writes of the wave of information spreading broadly in an closely-held enterprise and the rich interweaving of data and interpretation.
While most thoughtful entrepreneurs would hope for the blending of reality and action, they have little tolerance for people who want to take action without reflecting on lessons learned from the past. The thoughtful executive also looks for substantial documentation and measurement once action is begun, suggesting that only with careful monitoring of new projects will the organization know how successful it is in achieving its goals. Thoughtful executives urge members of their closely-held enterprise to learn more about themselves and their organization while in the process of enacting their project and achieving their goals. They will be effective learners, however, only if they assess what is happening and compare their performance to that of previous work groups.
Appropriate Uses of Strengths
The thoughtful entrepreneur offers wisdom to his closely-held enterprise and assumes that the questions he possesses are often just as important as the answers. Frequently, the questions being asked by the thoughtful executive encourage a reconceptualization of the problem being addressed. This reframing process is particularly important in a world filled with complex and often paradoxical problems. The thoughtful executive recognizes that the meaning of any event or problem depends on how this event or problem is framed.