Élisa: "What's the point of starting a business?"
To answer this seemingly straightforward question, it's important to start by defining what a company is. There are many definitions of a company. But the one we'll use here is that a company is an organization, i.e. a group of men and women who mobilize resources such as premises, tools, machines, knowledge, information or financial resources to produce objects or services and sell them to customers willing to pay for them.
This organization is the result of an idea that germinates and develops in the mind of one or more individuals. When the entrepreneur or entrepreneurial team believes that this idea will be well received by the market, in other words that there will be enough customers, this idea is called an opportunity. It may be the idea for a new good or service, a new way of producing or offering that good or service, or a new business. It is this conviction that the project will find a market that turns the initial idea into an entrepreneurial project. This project may therefore take the form of a new company, but it can also be developed within an existing organization.
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Answering the question "What's the point of setting up a business?" means asking what the point of setting up a business is, both for the customer and for the entrepreneur. Setting up a company is a way of satisfying the expectations of consumers, and even of society as a whole, if we think, for example, of bringing less polluting vehicles onto the market.
It also serves to satisfy the personal aspirations of the entrepreneur or his team, who may see in the entrepreneurial project a means of exercising their freedom to make decisions, of enjoying innovation, of acquiring power, of enriching themselves, of contributing to a better world...
This article is co-published with LUM, the science and society magazine of the University of Montpellier.
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