You cannot become a successful entrepreneur if you don’t have the survival skills to make it. So let’s see if you on the right track for survival in the sometimes lonely world of entrepreneurship.
Perhaps you have dreamt for some time of becoming an entrepreneur. You know the business you are in from back to front, but you want to be your own boss, in your own business. You have lots of ideas and believe that at least one of them could make you rich.
Maybe you are reluctant to give up a regular paycheck, but your dissatisfaction at work keeps egging you on to become an entrepreneur. You have little respect for the CEO in the company where you work, and would rather invest in your own business.
The question is, do you have what it takes to become an entrepreneur? Do you have those survival skills?
What are five characteristics of an Entrepreneur?
To be a successful entrepreneur it is essential to be healthy, fit, highly energetic, focused, and also creative. Flexibility, adaptability and resilience are also essential characteristics.
Entrepreneurs are in it to win it, and so they need to be focused and able to work hard. The best way to do this is to first identify your goals, and then stay with them. It’s the old story of work for yourself and be a winner, or work for a company and join a committee. Remember that CEO you despise? You might end up chairman of the committee in the workplace where you are employed, and they’ll continue to pay you even if you don’t always get it right. But if you are an entrepreneur in your own business, you aren’t going to be able to dodge the bullet if business decisions go wrong. The buck stops with you and those you choose to work with.
There’s a certain mindset that successful entrepreneurs have, and a very definite confidence. Without a doubt, successful brainpower comes from good health and an energetic focus on a healthy lifestyle. This includes a good diet, exercise and a general endeavor to be healthy. The energy for fit and healthy people comes naturally with the will to succeed.
Further, because entrepreneurs are in it for themselves, they need to push beyond the normal nine to five operating hours. It’s not because they have anything to prove, but working longer for an entrepreneur normally means working smarter – at least until the point at which they can pay others to do it for them.
Without any doubt, creative energy is a winner. But it should also come with an ability to accept advice and assistance. The true entrepreneur will consider advice given and use it to improve every element of business and the business plan of action. That’s why I say that entrepreneurs need to be “coachable.”
Where can I learn how to be an Entrepreneur and survive in the jungle?
There really is a “jungle” out there, whether you are operating in a commercial environment, in an office environment, or even in the humanities. But that doesn’t mean you can’t be an entrepreneur.
However, the very nature of entrepreneurship spells the ability of an individual to survive without the normal checks and balances offered by a regular nine to five job. But who is going to help the young, intrepid entrepreneur survive in this worldly jungle environment?
There is no pack answer here. A successful entrepreneur will often do it alone, and that’s what will spell success. If you need someone to help you survive this jungle, chances are you don’t have what it takes to become a successful entrepreneur.
I have a Ph.D. in Nuclear Physics; does that make me an Entrepreneur?
Some people are bright, and some people aren’t so bright. In the same vein, it doesn’t take rocket science to realize that some people have the ability to achieve academically, while others don’t. But the strange part is that even the brightest characters in the world are not necessarily the best achievers. Similarly having a Ph. D. in nuclear physics is not necessarily going to help anyone become a successful entrepreneur. If that’s the qualification you’ve got or are after, chances are you’ll do better looking for a job as a university professor.
While it is true that after succeeding in college, most folk expect to get a steady paycheck to pay bills and get ahead – perhaps get married, buy a home, and start a family. But entrepreneurs think differently, for instance if relocating will find you a source of venture capital, that’s what you’ll have to do. While a degree might be part of the scenario, it isn’t the bit that makes someone an entrepreneur.
It’s probably safe to say that instead of working towards and earning the ability to become a successful entrepreneur, you’re more likely to get there and make it to the top if you catch the “bug.” Catch the “disease,” and you’ll be doing all sorts of things to make money. But if it’s not in your blood, you’ll be looking for a job where someone else takes responsibility for the money that goes into your bank account.
I am a bit set in my ways and inflexible, will those traits make me a good and successful Entrepreneur?
People who are set in their ways and aren’t flexible are generally not the best candidates for entrepreneurial businesses. One of the reasons is that creativity is one of the most vital survival skills for a successful entrepreneur. So if you’re set in your ways, and don’t want (or can’t) change, then you are going to hit a wall when things don’t go your way.
Successful entrepreneurs are flexible and generally go with the flow. To succeed they need to be adaptable. Without adaptability a wanna-be entrepreneur simply won’t be going anywhere anytime soon. Rigid plans and closed minds don’t fit entrepreneurship. Instead what is needed is a solid plan that is totally flexible, and based on a solid business plan.
I enjoy and require a steady paycheck. Can I make it as an Entrepreneur?
Most people need a steady income, which means they need to be sure that there’s a regular paycheck at the end of each month. While not all entrepreneurs can guarantee this will happen in their lives, this certainly doesn’t mean it isn’t possible. It is also true that entrepreneurs are constantly on a roller coaster ride that is potentially filled with a combination of high drama and glorious moments of jubilation. But that doesn’t mean you can’t ensure a steady paycheck as an entrepreneur.
Anyone who has the true abilities and survival skills of an entrepreneur will be able to do what it takes to communicate their vision clearly, and achieve their goals according to this stated vision.
Without any doubt, commitment and focus are everything…
This article is based of of the book “Entrepreneur’s Guide to Raising Capital from Angel Investors” by Tarby Bryant, founder of Gathering of Angels