On Innovation and Entrepreneurship
Innovation exists in everyone, entrepreneurs are the ones who do
At the Israel Prize ceremony granting at the Jerusalem International Convention Center, Minister Naftali Bennett said: Our strength lies not only in innovation, but in entrepreneurship.
The 69 year old Israel is known throughout the world as the nation of the start-up, and now the prevailing view is that it stems from innovation and special wisdom, so I think that beyond that, intellect and wisdom exist elsewhere in the world. In my opinion, the secret element of the State of Israel is entrepreneurship, initiatives in youth movements, entrepreneurship in IDF units, entrepreneurship in high-tech and economics, entrepreneurship in society and education. Our power is not just innovation, but entrepreneurship. If so, what is the difference between innovation and entrepreneurship? Innovation is what gives rise to an idea. Entrepreneurship is what makes the idea a reality.
Many people have wonderful ideas, but the idea remains an idea. They pride themselves on the idea they have conceived, but do not act to advance it. Sometimes someone else realizes their idea, and then they are filled with bitterness, because they have thought about it before. An idea alone, without any action to implement it, is worthless. Good ideas – there are many, performance – much less.
Jewish heritage teaches us to act. “The Midrash is not the main thing, but the act.” The Mishnah states in tractate Avot. Even at Mount Sinai when the people of Israel accepted the Torah, what did they say? “We will do and then we will hear,” meaning the Torah states that good intentions are nice, but they are not enough. Only the actions determine.
From the dawn of our existence, the heroes of our people were men of action, entrepreneurs. Abraham understood that idolatry is a disaster. He got up and did something, left his homeland and immigrated to Israel. Spread the faith in one God and moral life. Moses understood that slavery is a disaster for the people. He did something, went to Pharaoh and worked to get the people out of slavery. Theodor Herzl converted the theoretical desire of the generations into action. He worked, founded a Zionist Congress, ran around the world to promote the Zionist idea.
It is difficult to be an entrepreneur, it is difficult to leave the comfort zone and to act. It’s much more convenient to watch the news and get annoyed. Anyone who has been an educational social entrepreneur or a high-tech person knows the obstacle course that includes indifference at first, ridicule, cynicism and failure. There are always those who enter the arena and work, and there are those who sit in the gallery and sends arrows of criticism at those who do.
You have to know that sometimes entrepreneurs also fail. It’s part of life, you have to take risks. But it is better that it be written on person’s gravestone that he “tried and tried but failed,” than that he “gave extraordinary criticism.” The choice is yours: to give criticism or to do. Lecter or repair. The destiny of the Jewish people is Tikkun Olam. The world was created flawed, and the responsibility for its correction was entrusted to us. The State of Israel must be a light unto the nations in entrepreneurship.
Every street corner has an initiative that only you can initiate. As Minister of Education of the State of Israel, I tell you all, there is one rating score in the certificate that does not exist, but it will make you succeed in your life. Get up, and do something.
TO THE MOVIE
Credits: נפתלי בנט – Naftali Bennett Нафтали Беннет Naftali Bennett en Français