Are you thinking about entrepreneurship and still have questions? Chances are you’ve had one or more business ideas in your head for a long time but haven’t dared to put them into practice yet.
First, let me tell you that everyone has business ideas. Yes, everybody!
Entrepreneurship is not about having business ideas. It’s not who has the best one. It’s who can put them into practice and conduct them successfully. It’s being able to act, learn from experience, and continuously improve, overcoming obstacles.
For this, some personality traits help you to be an entrepreneur with better results. Let’s take a look at each one of them:
Entrepreneurship often requires teamwork. However, the function of that team is to complement your skills so that all areas of the business perform well. So, your motivation cannot depend on external factors or people, or you will end up giving up the business.
To become self-motivated, you must realize that motivation comes with action. If you create a work routine and keep working even when you are unmotivated, the results of that work, however small, will help you regain motivation.
Also, it’s crucial that you don’t get discouraged or give up if you don’t get results quickly. Entrepreneurship is a process, with several phases and challenges. So be prepared for a marathon, not a sprint.
If you are one of those people who would never work in contact with the public if you had the chance, maybe entrepreneurship is not the best option for you. For your business to succeed, you must solve problems that other people need to have fixed. If you don’t have very direct contact with the public, you can’t understand the difficulties that these people feel, and which of these they value enough to pay for a solution.
To be an entrepreneur you need people, period. And not just clients. You need contacts and partnerships to evolve. As such, networking is essential for your business because it is through your network of contacts that you will get the biggest opportunities for your enterprise.
This’s true even for those who don’t want to be entrepreneurs. But for those who want to own their own business, it becomes even more relevant. You can’t successfully undertake entrepreneurship locked in a bubble.
Here’s another crucial characteristic of entrepreneurs. It’s not about being unafraid! We all are afraid. We are afraid of how things will go, of failure, of being successful and being unable to cope, of what others will think… The difference is that you must trust your abilities to overcome difficulties and do what you have to do for your business, even when you fear it.
Having a business implies getting out of your comfort zone, i.e., it implies that you always feel on the edge, constantly uncomfortable. That’s the way you know you are growing and evolving as a person, as an entrepreneur, and as a business.
Ask yourself: “Can I handle periods of anxiety and uncertainty without allowing it to have a major impact on my work and life?”. If the answer is yes, great excellent. If it’s negative, you need to work on that area if you choose to become an entrepreneur.
You’ll make lots of mistakes and you should know that right away. And every mistake is a learning experience. That’s how you have to look at it to improve. If you usually spend a lot of time recriminating yourself and find it hard to start over, you need to change your mindset. Entrepreneurship involves constantly dealing with uncertainty and testing. In other words, it has a huge margin for error and learning.
In that sense, to be an entrepreneur you must put perfectionism aside. You must do it, test it, and do it again, and test it again and again until you get it right. There is no perfect and no final version – there is evolution.
Following on from the previous point, the best learning is done with practice and mistakes. But that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t constantly study to improve your knowledge. And the best way to learn is to apply what you learn, to draw your own conclusions, to understand where you are struggling, what works, and what you have to adapt to your business and reality.
It’s important to find the balance between realizing that you will never know everything and that you always know enough to start taking action. Action will guide you to what you need to learn next.
There is a misguided notion that an entrepreneur never gives up. But an entrepreneur must always be ready to give up and make new commitments. They must be flexible to change plans to meet the real needs of customers.
In most situations, successful businesses don’t start and end the same way. They start with a business idea, which is tested and adapted to the market, and eventually becomes something else.
As such, having unmovable ideas is not a characteristic of an entrepreneur. Knowing how to analyze the market and adapt is.
Rather than getting stuck in the initial format in which you thought you would realize your idea, you should stick to your vision and mission, the impact you want to generate, the difference you want to make with your business, and be flexible about execution.
This’s the last feature on the list, underlining how important it is to finish what you start. Without it, the business loses focus and direction, crumbling like a house where the foundation is left unfinished when you move on to build the roof.
To be an entrepreneur, you need to set priorities, goals, and deadlines and meet them. So, if you procrastinate and leave important tasks undone unless you are given deadlines, you run the serious risk of getting absorbed by the work you’re going to do for your first clients (which will have deadlines). You will end up letting the management of your business drift away, compromising the whole future.
Now that you know the 8 main characteristics that an entrepreneur should have, do you fit this profile? Normally, you don’t meet all the requirements. If this is the case, it shouldn’t discourage you from being an entrepreneur, if that’s what you want to do. But you should keep an eye on these traits and work on your personal development actively to improve step by step. If, on the other hand, the experience as an enterpreneur also helps you to shape these traits, it will often happen more painfully than if you are proactive and focus on improving them.