Higher Learning

Help Yourself

It's easy to see how corporate employees benefit from executive education courses and how programs geared specifically to entrepreneurs benefit small-business owners. But even general executive education classes can greatly enrich an entrepreneur's ability to effectively run his or her business.

"Many entrepreneurs have developed their companies through a strong capability in one functional area or skill," explains Harvard's Berg. "[Executive education] is an opportunity to broaden their education in other functional areas."

Peirce agrees: "What if I was thinking of acquiring another company but didn't know anything about mergers?" she asks. "Or what if I'm marketing-oriented but never understood how to read a balance sheet? There are some very specific skills people can come for and derive bottom-line benefits immediately."

In Berg's opinion, one of the best things about attending an executive education course is "it's almost like going to another country; you're exposed to different situations. [Ideally,] you come back with a much different and fresher perspective on your own company."

No matter how an entrepreneur decides to improve his or her skills, it's always a good idea. To stay successful as a small-business owner, "you have to keep reinvesting in your own human capital--the set of assets you bring to your position," says Peirce.

Adds Krueger, "[Smart] business owners know that everything they can learn--every technique, every advantage, every nugget of information they can use--is going to help them directly."

Like this article? Get this issue right now on iPad, Nook or Kindle Fire.

This article was originally published in the August 1997 print edition of Entrepreneur with the headline: Higher Learning.

Loading the player ...

Tim Ferriss on Mastering Any Skill

Ads by Google

Share Your Thoughts

Most Shared Stories

1
8 Slow, Difficult Steps to Become a Millionaire
2
What I Learned From Being a Broke, Unemployed Graduate
3
Want Media Attention? Target Trades First
4
50 Favorite Online-Marketing Influencers of 2014
5
It Takes 3 to Run a Business