The Nashville Institute for Faith and Work is excited to welcome Dr. Jeff Cornwall for our February Lunch & Learn on the topic of “The Virtue of Temperance in Entrepreneurship: Is Work/Life Balance Possible?” on February 21 from 11:30 a.m. - 1 p.m. Read below to see a few thoughts he has offered as a preview for his talk in February.
Q: What intrigues you most as you consider the concept of temperance in regards to the entrepreneurial vocation?
A: In my own personal experience, and in what I have observed in countless other entrepreneurs I have worked with over the years, temperance is virtue that entrepreneurs struggle the most with as the launch and grow their businesses. Workaholism and a lack of balance in life is a daily struggle for most business owners.
Q: Can you name a specific example of a way you see a lack of temperance in today's entrepreneurial landscape?
A: A lack of temperance leads them to put their business ahead of everything else in their lives. As a result, many have nothing left for family, faith, or friendships. We see higher-than-average divorce rates among entrepreneurs and many have difficulty maintaining relationships with others. We also see high rates of burnout among entrepreneurs who do not create balance in their lives.
Q: Do you believe it's possible for those in the entrepreneurial world to exhibit and enjoy a healthy work/life balance? And if so, how is that possible?
A: Absolutely! However, it takes an intentional effort to bring the virtue of temperance to life. It must be a part of every step of the business -- from the initial planning stage, to its launch, through its growth, and finally during the exit process. The entrepreneur's goal is not just to maximize the potential value of the business, but to build a business that allows them to live a life that is well lived.
Dr. Jeff Cornwall is the Jack C. Massey Chair in Entrepreneurship and Professor of Entrepreneurship at Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee. Dr. Cornwall has spent more than forty years as a serial entrepreneur and teacher of entrepreneurs. In the 1970’s he started several small businesses and was involved in various family ventures. In the late 1980’s, following several years in academics, Dr. Cornwall co-founded Atlantic Behavioral Health Systems in Raleigh, NC and spent nearly a decade leading the company as President/CEO. Dr. Cornwall remains active as an entrepreneur with the digital content venture he co-founded in 2014, Entrepreneurial Mind, LLC. In his academic career, Dr. Cornwall has received national awards for his work in curriculum development and teaching. In 2013 the United States Association of Small Business and Entrepreneurship named Dr. Cornwall the National Entrepreneurship Educator of the Year. He has authored nine books and numerous articles on entrepreneurship.