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Entrepreneurial Alertness

Sharon A. Alvarez and Jay B. Barney  201720170412_064208

Entrepreneurial Alertness is the ability that some people have to recognize competitive imperfections in markets. Competitive imperfections exist in markets when information about technology, demand, or other determinants of competition in an industry is not widely understood by those operating in that industry. The existence of competitive imperfections in markets suggests that it is possible for at least some economic actors in these markets to earn economic profits. Thus, entrepreneurial alertness can be thought of as the ability of some people to recognize opportunities to earn economic profits. However, as developed by Kirzner (1989) , entrepreneurial alertness does not imply that individuals are systematically and rationally searching their environment for competitive imperfections. Rather, these individuals become aware of these competitive imperfections through their day‐to‐day activities. Indeed, they are often surprised that these imperfections exist, and that they have not been previously exploited by someone else. 





There are many ways of treating PTSD, and some are quite effective. However, expressive art has been shown to be effective regarding both the “positive” and “negative” symptoms, while some therapies seem only to address the “positive.” Emotional numbing is an inability to feel any type of emotion, and it must be dealt with for recovery to occur. In using artistic expression, sufferers of PTSD can make images more or less overtly demonstrative of traumatic events or their feelings aroused by them. This is especially possible for those for whom it is difficult or impossible to talk about such things. The making of physical art is an externalization (a demonstration outside of self) of the sufferer’s condition and its causes. The revelations of such condition and causes may be emotionally very risky for the individual. Therefore, such activity must be undertaken among others who are trusted to be patient, supportive, and empathetic. To foster this environment, A4TH employs counselors, artists, and mentors—many of whom who are combat veterans themselves. 

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Appleton artist embraces the healing power of art for veterans, families


Tim Mayer has seen the healing power of art.  “It’s a really great way of engaging people,” the 59-year-old Appleton artist said.

In 2004, Mayer founded a nonprofit organization called Artists for the Humanities, with the purpose of honoring the military men and women who died in service during the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. Mayer painted a number of portraits of veterans and gave them to families of the deceased.

In 2007, he realized there were unmet needs to assist military men and women who experienced trauma and are dealing with post-traumatic stress disorder, among many.

“So I transitioned our organization to begin offering expressive art and art as a treatment for therapy to our military men and women,” he said.

Mayer is not a licensed therapist or counselor but he partnered with George Kamps, a psychotherapist in Green Bay.

“George has been seeing a number of Vietnam veterans who were dealing with PTSD,” he said. “They were reluctant to speak about their experiences in Vietnam.”

The Return and Recovery Program for Military Veterans was formed in 2009, meeting at the Norbertine Center for Spirituality at St. Norbert Abbey in De Pere.

Since then, he has worked with more than 3,000 veterans in De Pere as well as the Tomah VA Medical Center and a transitional housing facility for veterans in Milwaukee. His organization recently received a $25,000 grant the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Mayer enjoys helping veterans find a way to express their emotions.

“I had a real want to do this,” he said. “I had a real desire to do this. I have no formal schooling in this. I learned most of it working with very talented mental health professionals.”

He is also grateful for the support of his board of directors.

“It’s a small organization but it’s a real team effort,” he said. “I would not be able to do what I do without them.”

Recently, Mayer expanded his program to include the general population as well as veterans. Art as a Tool for Healing is a free program “open to anyone who may be dealing with life’s difficulties.”

“This is kind of a support group,” he said. “They may not want to necessarily talk about what is going on but sometimes making an image can open doors to talking with a friend or someone who is a good listener.”

Mayer said his work is challenging but he wants to help those in need.

“I am blessed,” he said. “I love what I do. I love it more now than when I started. I am enriched by the people that I work to aid. They make me a better person.”

George J. Kamps said Mayer uses his talents to reach out to others.

“As a retired clinical social worker who counseled veterans with PTSD for over 30 years, I have seen significant healing with so many veterans and non-veterans who engage with Tim in this expressive art approach,” he said. “Tim is sincere, talented and passionate in his effort to help people pursue a higher quality of life.”

For more information about Artists for the Humanities, contact Mayer at 920-915-5595 or visit

Linda Dums can be reached at

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