Martijn Driessen is the founder and director of Entrepreneur Scan. After attending the Hotel Management School Maastricht, Driessen studied Business Administration, graduated and then received his doctorate with a thesis on successful entrepreneurship. He started his business immediately after his studies in 1997. Based on his successful thesis, the Entrepreneur Scan (E-Scan) was developed, whereby you can evaluate and develop your successful entrepreneurship. He won the ‘Starter of the Year’ award in 1997. Here is what he told me about his business.
“The thesis showed that banks evaluate start-up entrepreneurs based on a gut feeling when it comes to lending. The start-up entrepreneur is evaluated on his skills, without any assessment. Trade associations do not assist entrepreneurs and the Chamber of Commerce only checks whether there is a financial plan. Not surprisingly, 51% of all start-ups stop doing business within 5 years.
I did a study with the Chamber of Commerce of whether it is possible to reduce the failure rate of start-up entrepreneurs, to increase business success and make a profit. We had a group of start-up entrepreneurs take an E-Scan (ondernemerstest.nl) and had them coached. After 5 years, this group appeared to be more successful than entrepreneurs who did not receive an E-Scan and coaching. With E-Scan and coaching, 89% were still operating after five years. Research also shows that people have little self-knowledge and are not curious about opportunities for improvement. All start-up entrepreneurs should really do an entrepreneur scan. This immediately points out the weak spot and shows in which competencies should be invested. Through this awareness, there would be increased sales, better market development and fewer failed companies.
There is a big difference in how investments are dealt with in the Netherlands compared to abroad. You see many more Fintech developments abroad, whereby dealing with money is simplified and accelerated. You see entrepreneurs more quickly explore new paths and more easily obtain external knowledge in order to grow. In the Netherlands [ed. and much of Europe] financing is still often done by banks and financial institutions that are often a brake on innovation.
If you know how to use IT properly, you can scale quicker and thereby increase your market reach. Independent companies like Goyello bridge the gap between IT and Business. They look more at what your business really needs and provide the solutions for this. They can encourage you to change your business plan in order to further develop the market and reach larger groups using powerful technology. You invest in IT to see what subsequent steps you need to take in order to grow. This is partly why E-Scan is successful in the Netherlands and we’re targeting other countries in the world.”
Owner at LOve for the Brand. Communications and marketing expert. Interested in technology, art and science. Her projects revolve around branding, strategy, change management and editorial management. Fascinated about what brings people in motion, what excites and binds them.