March 15, 2017
Entrepreneurs are a different breed. They seem to have innate talents that simply can’t be taught. Ordinary people often ask, “Why didn’t I think of that?” Not only did some entrepreneur think of it, but they nurtured their germ of an idea, saw its value to consumers and brought it to fruition.
Not everything that they touch turns to gold, but their setbacks have a way of inspiring them to try even harder. Here are four qualities that outgoing entrepreneurs have in common:
People have bright ideas every day, and it’s a shame that more of them are not acted upon. Entrepreneurs can envision every new idea. Their vision encompasses the final product, the financial realities of funding the project, the step-by-step process of executing it and the obstacles that will inevitably crop up.
Entrepreneurs have the determination to see their visions through from start to finish. They are not easily thwarted; even failure is a useful tool in the hands of someone who has a deep desire to transform his vision into reality.
Supreme confidence goes hand in hand with an entrepreneur’s determination. They’re not afraid to take risks. They may abandon a steady paycheck with no safety net. They’ll do anything to fund their ideas: seek investors, apply for government grants, raise money through crowdfunding, sell off assets or even dip into their own bank account. Their personal life may take a hit. As for leisure time, they often kiss it goodbye.
They’re willing to make these temporary sacrifices because they believe un-waveringly in their long-term vision.
We all grew up with someone who seemed to march to a different drummer. Maybe you’re thinking of the girl who hung out in the science lab well into her lunch break. Maybe you remember the sixth-grader who had a thriving T-shirt business. Invariably, these are the kinds of people who are already millionaires at the 10-year high school reunion.
Entrepreneurs don’t mind thinking and working independently. They’re curious about people and the world in which they live. They’re alert. They never stop seeking knowledge or exploring new ideas. They fire off questions. They’re quick learners who remember everything they’ve ever read. Their failures are just as valuable to them as their successes. They’re problem solvers. They’re patient, persistent and skilled at juggling reality and possibility.
Although they seem to conjure brilliant ideas out of thin air, their creativity goes beyond innovative thinking. Before a novel product or service reaches an enthusiastic public, the entrepreneur who came up with it has spent a lot of time objectively evaluating his idea. He’s used creative strategies to bring it to life. He may have tried and failed many times over before getting it right.
Strong Management Skills
Entrepreneurs are adept at managing time and people. A big part of effective time management is recognizing the value of one’s own time and allocating it properly. Entrepreneurs continually prioritize their time and tasks. If a thing can wait, something else moves to its place on the list. Flexibility and a talent for thinking on one’s feet are essential qualities.
No one can be everywhere at once. That’s where people skills and leadership come in. Entrepreneurs see the value in teamwork and a well-rounded collaboration of ideas. They’re good at finding gaps in a process or chain of communication, and they tap the right people to fill them. They’re aware of their own shortcomings and aren’t reluctant to delegate. They’re good listeners and clear communicators who invite and offer honest feedback.
True entrepreneurs are anything but glory hogs. They recognize special gifts and competencies in others and work to develop them. They want their team members to thrive.
Finally, entrepreneurs are almost always giving by nature. Wealth is less motivating to them than bettering the lives of people. It’s unlikely, for example, that Thomas Edison’s bank account was his greatest source of pride. Yes, there are tax benefits to philanthropy, but multibillionaire donors would hardly go broke without them.
A generous spirit stems from appreciation for the opportunities that one has been given. It’s a generosity that’s about so much more than money. Entrepreneurs want everyone to dream big. They’re passionate about helping others to succeed.
Accountability comes into play as well for a budding entrepreneur. From the first investor who took a huge risk on a garage startup to future shareholders, successful business owners have a lot of people to answer to. They have a sense of obligation. They owe. When tens of billions of dollars are involved, the largesse of an entrepreneur has the power to transform entire communities.
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