An entrepreneur is an individual who establishes and manages a business for the principal purpose of profit as well as growth. The entrepreneur is characterized principally by innovative behavior and will employ strategic management practices in the business. Entrepreneurship is known to be a long and difficult journey for those who embark on it therefore to be a successful entrepreneur one must possess certain characteristics.
Perseverance is one characteristic that entrepreneurs have. Successful entrepreneurs have a continued steady belief or efforts and are able to withstand discouragement or difficulty. Biz Stone the co-founder of Twitter said that “Timing, perseverance and ten years of will eventually make you look like an overnight success.” Steve Jobs, co-founder and former CEO of Apple also once said, “I’m convinced that about half of what separates the successful entrepreneurs from the non-successful ones is pure perseverance.
Entrepreneurs take calculated risks as a result successful entrepreneurs never invest blindfolded. Mark Zuckerberg said that, “The biggest risk is not taking any risk. In a world that is changing really quickly, the only strategy that is guaranteed to fail is not taking risk.” Roy Kroc, founder of McDonald’s also went on to say, “If you are not a risk taker, you should get the hell out of business.” Entrepreneurs take risks based on sound and calculated judgement, however they do not end at taking risks, they always have a plan B in their mind in case their judgement fails unpredictably. That is what strengthens their roots in the market.
Entrepreneurs do not expect something from nothing and also they do not wait for things to happen. They are doers. They overcome challenges and avoid procrastination. Nolan Bushnell said that “The critical ingredient is getting off your butt and doing something. It is as simple as that. A lot of people have ideas but there are a few who decide to do something about them now. Not tomorrow, not next week but today. The true entrepreneur is a doer not a dreamer.”
Self-belief and Confidence
Successful entrepreneurs believe in themselves as a result they have self-confidence. This is not to say entrepreneurs never have self-doubt, but they are able to overcome it and believe they can achieve their goal. Steve Case, co-founder of AOL said that, “You shouldn’t focus on why you can’t do something, which is what most people do. You should focus on why perhaps you can, and be one of the exceptions.”
Other Characteristics of successful entrepreneurs
- Drive and energy level
- Setting challenging but realistic goals (goal oriented)
- Long-term involvement
- Persistent problem solving
- Learning from failure
- Unique brand of commitment
- Motivated and with high energy
- Prepared to pick up the pieces and start over again
- Able to live with uncertainty and push through a crucible of obstacles
- Tolerance of ambiguity – the ability to withstand the fear of uncertainty and potential failure (the mental battlefield)
- Strong sense of basic ethics
- Competitive spirit
- Strong leadership qualities
- Understand the value of a strong peer network
- More than just tenacious
- Strong communication skills
- Serial innovators
- Locus of control
- Earns the trust and respect of his team
- Networking ability
- Opportunity seeker
Well, to sum it up you can note that no matter the size of business or industry, starting a company requires a set of skills and attributes not everyone possesses. Although their level of education and experience may vary, successful entrepreneurs often share the same characteristics. Remember you don’t have to possess all of these characteristics, you just need to note just a few maybe between 5 and 10 characteristics that really describe you. So the question is do you possess any of these characteristics at all?