Enterprise Versus Sole Proprietorship – Are They Similar?

Enterprise comes from two words, enterprise and project; they are interchangeable, however when we refer to enterprise we are talking about a commercial enterprise conducted by individuals or by businesses of more than one company. Entrepreneur refers to an individual or a corporation who undertakes a project. And so the roots of this word lie in the French term entrendre, meaning to undertake. The meanings of these words have changed over time to become more generic, more specific, more polite, and more specific in their business context. For instance, we now say enterprise, instead of ‘enterprise management’ and the like.

The term entrepreneur also comes from the same root word as enterprise, but with an -er instead of an -ing. This word, when used in business contexts, indicates someone who is taking on a project, or taking part in a project, and is probably not a person who would necessarily qualify for membership in the American Institute of Business Management or the American Chamber of Commerce. But for certain types of ventures and businesses, the entrepreneur is a necessary element. Perhaps the most common example of this type of entrepreneur is the Microsoft Store. An entrepreneur refers to the person who is actually running the business process, which is conducting transactions on behalf of the enterprise.

The definition of entrepreneur is usually associated with the word sole proprietorship, which means the management of a firm or partnership by one person. When a sole proprietor takes on any type of venture, it refers to that person managing and operating the enterprise, rather than the other way around. One could therefore argue that the sole proprietorship and enterprise are not similar in many ways. Nevertheless, enterprises can be organized into partnerships or joint ventures, and sole proprietors can participate in them, but they still retain their rights to manage the firm or company on their own. In short, the distinction between an enterprise and a sole proprietorship can be a false distinction, as all involve individuals managing and operating a business enterprise.