Given the current economic challenges facing many countries across the globe, the notion of engendering entrepreneurial skills and effective management activity has become a prominent goal for many nations. The relevance of entrepreneurial skills and effective management to cooperative development has been highlighted by many researchers (Davidson, 2006). It is now well-recognized that education and training opportunities play a key role in cultivating future entrepreneurial skills and effective management to empower cooperative business to greater level of success (Henry, 2003). Human beings are endowed with some natural potential which enables one to exercise God given talents for the purpose of self development, social and economic transformation for better living. These skills when identified and developed, then put into use become an enterprise. Entrepreneurship skills occur when a person or group of persons or a business firm assumes risks in the hope of making profit (Onuoha, 1994).
A cooperative society is an autonomous association of persons united voluntarily to meet their common economic, social and cultural needs and aspirations through a jointly and democratically controlled enterprise. (ICA,1995). History reveals that cooperatives were established by working people to respond to the problems that arouse from industrialization and capitalism. Their main vision of coming together was to meet their daily need through their own work. The aim of entrepreneurial skills and effective management education training should be to develop the human resources to the capacities and mindsets that benefit economics by fostering creativity and innovation in the cooperative enterprise. Cooperatives have been playing a significant role in nourishing rural and urban communities with food production and employment. Cooperatives have been used as the socio-economic core for achieving the self-sufficient economy and the economical way of life that bring sustainable growth of the nation.
However, there is need for basic knowledge of entrepreneurship skills and managerial ability at the initial stage of cooperative enterprise and also during the later stage of their development. Managers of cooperative enterprises should be generalist and gain basic skills and knowledge in managerial functions such as planning organizing, leading and controlling. Managers also should have an overview of finance, marketing and marketing development. Competition and so on. Therefore, effective management is management skills that help managers to deal with specific challenges and problems of their organization, which are the urgent needs of the cooperation business in the global competitive environment. These skill include; creative problem solving skills, communication skills, conflict management skills, Negotiation skills and self awareness and improvement (www.ask.com).
Nigeria government at various levels has recognized the potentials of entrepreneurship skills and effective management in economic and social development of a nation, much effort has been made towards harnessing these potentials. But in spite of all these efforts, entrepreneurship skills and effective management have not been developed to the desired level as such and has not contributed much to the economy of the nation. Unemployment and poverty rates are still very high due to low level of wealth creation.
Inversely, all these have lead to premature death of so many functional cooperative societies which are thereafter supplanted by emergency cooperative societies (Nweze, & Onuoha, 2000). There seems to be a missing link in the entrepreneurship skill and managerial skills development programmes in Nigeria as compared to those of other countries like Japan, Israel and China etc. in Nigeria the knowledge of entrepreneurship skills and efficient management have not been fully integrated into the scheme of cooperatives to help solve the problems that hinder the development and survival of these cooperative societies for improved wealth creation. This might be that the role cooperative in the economy has been fully understood by the various stakeholders.
There is now need for a great entrepreneurship skill and efficient management enthusiasm for cooperative enterprise in Nigeria, as in other African countries. However, the main problem of entrepreneurship skill and effective management development in Nigeria is that people are not acquiring it by choice or because they want to take advantage of available opportunities but out of necessity because they cannot find wage employment and do not have other sources of income (Schaumburg-Miller, 2010). Developing entrepreneurial skill and effective managerial skill in cooperatives is more likely to promote the real spirit when the people know that the purpose for which they are cooperating is for their own economic benefit and not to serve any outside interest.
However, there is an urgent need to inculcate these skills to the members of cooperators in Nigeria if the movement will take her pride and contribute effectively and efficiently to the national development.
OBJECTIVE OF THE PAPER
This paper is set to examine basic conceptual issues, steps to acquire entrepreneurship skills and effective management, some of the entrepreneurial and managerial skills needed for successful business in globalize cooperative enterprise for rapid wealth creation in Nigeria.
CONCEPTUAL ISSUES ON ENTREPRENEURIAL SKILLS AND EFFECTIVE MANAGEMENT
The concept of entrepreneurship skills and effective management has been explained by various authors in various ways. However the basic issues remain constant. For instance, the term entrepreneurship is derived from French word “Entrepreneur” meaning one who undertakes tasks in a production process. Robinson and Davidson (1996) define skills as aptitudes and abilities appropriate for a specific job. In other words, a skillful person is someone who is very good at what he or she is doing. Entrepreneurship skills, therefore, are the abilities aptitudes that enable someone survive and succeed in entrepreneurship.
According to Anadi, Egboka, Ezeoha and Ikwumelu (2010), entrepreneurship skills are competencies and capabilities that enable an individual to become productive, successful and independent. They are survival skills which people require to function effectively and successfully in a business. Amaechina & Nnadizie (1995) defined entrepreneurship skill as the willingness and ability of an individual to seek out investment opportunities, establish and run enterprises successfully. Most of the time, the individual might be willing could not be able to achieve success due to some hindering factors.
Hisrich, (2002) also identify three entrepreneurial skills which include:
- Technical Skills: These include written, oral communication, monitoring environment, technical business management, technology, interpersonal, listening, ability to organize, network building, management style, coaching and being a team leader,
- Business Management Skills: These include planning and goal setting, decision making, human relationship, marketing, control, accounting management, negotiation, venture launch and managing growth.
- Personal Entrepreneurial Skills: These include inner control/discipline, risk-taker, innovative, change oriented, persistent, visionary leader and the ability to manage change.
The efficiency of the attributes mentioned above depends on the effectiveness of the managerial skill in implementing them, and that means being competent in fundamental management skills. An effective manager takes responsibility for ensuring that each individual within his department succeeds and that the team or business unit achieves results (profileinternational). Managerial skills enable one to maintain efficiency in the ways their employee’s complete tasks and make sure that other business resources are applied to ensure success of the business enterprise. Successful managers require both talent and skill. Effective management can be developed through training, mentoring and experience. Managerial skills form the vehicle by which management strategy, management practice, tools and techniques, personality attributes, and styles work to produce effective management rests.
DEFINITIONS OF MANAGEMENT AND EFFECTIVE MANAGEMENT
Nwankwo in Obayi (2009) posited that management is the art and science of systematic and careful arrangement of resources available to an organization for the achievement of its goals and objectives. Koons and O’ Donnel in Obayi define management as the work done by the manager or executive in order to achieve results through others which includes planning, organizing, staffing coordinating, directing, supervising and budgeting. This shows that the role of management in any organization is to help formulate goals for the organization and take necessary steps to help attain them in other that the organization will survive the test of time and achieve success (Onwuchekwa, 1996).
Effective management is a required skill package which includes the ability to work with people and to be a team player, an aptitude for finance, a knack for efficient time- management and a talent for solid planning (www.ehow.com). It is always essential in any business, regardless regardless the type or size. Hatnes’s, K. presented a pyramid of structure skill that a manager needs to master needs to master in other to achieve success in his/her management career.
The Management skills Pyramid, Level 1: shows the basic skills a manager must master just to get the job done. These are the fundamental of the management job: plan, Organize, Direct, and Control.
The Management Skill Pyramid, Level:2 These are the management skills that you use to develop your staff, is a team building skills any developing manager must master. There are many specific skills required and are grouped into these categories.
Motivation, Training and coaching, Employee involvement.
The Management Skills Pyramid, Top Level: The peak of the Management skill Pyramid, the single skill that will help you most in developing success in your management career, is Leadership. As you develop your skill as a leader, as you make the transition from manager to LEADER, you will achieve the success you truly want in your management career.