Sitting by a like in New Hampshire on the Fourth of July weekend I have the opportunity to reflect on the influence of business on the founding of the United States.
I am doing this because I am also in the midst of teaching a seminar called “Entrepreneurism: The Engine of American Business”. The students are business majors from around the world. The basic question asked during the seminar is why is the US different from other countries. We have talked about the legal system and it’s influence. How the idea of a melting pot effects entrepreneurial activity and how the concept of creative destruction influences new business development.
But reading “American Creation” by Joseph J. Ellis has me thinking about how the American Revolution was different. The founding fathers were not interested in power, they were interested in freedom. Freedom to run their business the way that they wanted to, to trade with whoever they wanted and to not have the king telling them what to do. They sound like entrepreneurs to me.
The parallels extend to the troops. John Adams talked about how the American troops were fighting for life, liberty and freedom while the British troops were fighting for 3 pence a day. It was a mission for the Americans while it was a job for the British. How many stories of the entrepreneur vs the big company sound similar.
Just a few thought about this country I live in.