Schools provide the very foundation to cultivate an entrepreneurial mindset among students at a young age. The question is, are our schools being too technical and are basing their lessons too much on theories instead of practical applications? We have listed down our personal experiences with the 3 most important lessons that schools should have taught to its students to produce more successful economic drivers and entrepreneurs.
ABCs Not Taught in Schools?
“I failed in some subjects in exam, but my friend passed it all. Now he is an engineer in Microsoft and I am the owner of Microsoft.” – Bill Gates
Bill Gates wasn’t the brightest student in his school or college, but he is one of the most successful entrepreneurs of all time. So, what’s wrong with our education?
We learn a lot of hard skills like maths and science in school but the core structure of our current academics have some fundamental concepts that contradicts with what’s out there in life. This is why most of us (if not all of us) are not prepared for our future undertakings. And I wish to share with you what I think are the ABCs neglected by academics:
In school, you are taught a lesson before given a test. In life, you are given a test that teaches you a lesson.
It is different. Schools unconsciously promote this negative attitude of expecting somebody to actually teach us about something before encountering it. Teachers teach us Chapter One before giving a test. And if Chapter 2 questions appear in the test, we complain. We expect the teacher to teach us before we are given a test. We are not trained to face the unexpected. In life, I think that’s why we have a lot of friends complaining basically about everything (especially as an entrepreneur) when they leave school. But let’s face it. Life is more cruel. You get hit from nowhere and you have to respond quick. If not, be prepared for a second one. That is why we have to be mentally prepared, and when we do make mistakes and face challenges, learn from them. It is not easy, but let’s not complain. We do not learn about positive thinking, the law of attraction or anything like that in school too.
2. Building a team.
Schools do not teach us about teamwork, leadership and anything related to this area.
Our academic system grades us based on individual performance, and they expect you to be an ‘all-rounder’ excelling in science, maths and languages AT THE SAME TIME, with very little opportunities working in teams. For years we have been taught to do our homework ourselves and not to copy during our exams. Well, outside school, it is called collaboration as long as both parties benefit mutually. More often, this actually results in a better end product. Most of the time in business, the team is the most important thing, not the idea, because the idea often requires a lot of pivoting, and a strong team can do just that. Teamwork is extremely important, sadly we are not practicing it enough during our school days. Schools do not teach leadership too.
Academics kills divergent thinking and creativity.
It often teaches us there is only one answer to one question. Teachers often mark our exam papers according to the ‘marking scheme’ and if our answer is not in the ‘marking scheme’, it is incorrect and we lose marks. In business and life, we have learned that there is no such thing. A single technology can be used in so many innovative ways that can help many communities all around the world. The phone was just a tool for making calls (communication). When the question of “how can I improve the phone?” pops up in Steve’s mind, imagine if his answer was only to improve the current functions we had back then on a phone. There wouldn’t be a revolutionary iPhone today.
Education is important but we have to realize there are things that matter in life that are not taught in school, Nicholas and I call these skills ‘Out-Class Education’. We are are working on a platform to tackle this problem. So, what do you think about education? Or what would you like to learn? Share with us! Please feedback to us at https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/viewform?formkey=dGV3Zl9JQjRuS0o3dmR3c2xRQVllaWc6MQ#gid=0.
Thank you in advance!
Post By Nick & Kevin (8 Posts)
Kevin and Nicholas are both young entrepreneurs from Penang who are currently working on 2 tech business ventures. They have recently launched their first venture, AwesomePenang.com. They are constantly striving to learn more throughout their entrepreneurial journey and to share their experiences with other young entrepreneurs. Together, they have been actively involved in projects that focused on youth potential development and has organized many events in their college years.