There were many other music players out on the market before Apple came out with the iPod, but the iPod soon came to dominate the marketplace surpassing all others. Why is that? Because Apple products were driven by an amazing entrepreneur by the name of Steve Jobs. Steve Jobs didn’t just run a company called Apple, he was also a truly passionate entrepreneur.
So, what are the differences between people who run a business and true entrepreneurs? Here are some qualities that definitely make the difference.
1. Growth mindset
People who run a business have a mindset of just meeting their minimum expectations. They hope to make their payroll that month, that quarter, or that year, and they hope to reach a certain number. Because of this mindset they do exactly that – they meet their minimum goals. True entrepreneurs have a growth mindset which says “let’s make this a billion-dollar company ” even though at the time the company may be very small. They don’t limit their thinking by thinking so small. They go big or go home.
2. Passion for the business
People who run a business go to the business because “it seemed like a good idea at the time”. They don’t necessarily have a passion for the business. True entrepreneurs, no matter what business they are in, go into a business that they truly have a passion for. They may love the business, they may want to change the world, or they may want to revolutionize a product. Whatever their reason may be, they have a passion for the business that is contagious to all those around them. People who run a business run it to make money, while people who are true entrepreneurs run a business because it is their life’s passion and they can’t not do it!
3. Looking for new opportunities
People who run a business tend to stick to the business that they have. They don’t want to make waves. This leads to eventually becoming stagnant and not growing. True entrepreneurs have a business, but they are always looking for new opportunities, new product lines, new niches, new growth strategies, and new streams of revenue. They listen very carefully to the customers because customers often have the best ideas for new opportunities for their business. They keep their eye on the present, but they’re always looking forward to the horizon for new opportunities.
4. Open to change
People who run a business tend to cling to the old way of doing things. They are not open to change because they’re afraid it will impact their business negatively. Think of all of the video store owners who didn’t adapt to the change with the streaming video who are now out of business. You could say that Blockbuster “block busted”. True entrepreneurs are open to change and actually will look at how they should change their business on a daily basis. They do not let the sleeping dog lie – they go kick it awake and tell it needs to change its ways.
People who run a business are the kind of people who when they buy a house, they can only see the house for what it looks like currently. They can see its total potential of what it will look like in the future. True entrepreneurs have a vision of what their company or the organization is going to look like down the road. If you ask them, they will paint a picture of where they’re going to be in 5-10 years. They have the vision to imagine a future which is unlimited and has tremendous growth opportunity for them and for their employees. This allows them to make decisions not only for today, but also to impact the business in the long-term. Walt Disney was able to visualize what Disneyland was going to be, was going to look like, and how it would succeed, long before anyone else believed in his vision.
6. Work ethic
People who run a business act like employees not owners. When it is 5 o’clock they “punch out” and decide to go home because it is the end of the workday. They don’t realize that their minimum effort each day contributes towards having poor results later. True entrepreneurs know that in order to build an amazing business empire, they can’t do that between the limited hours of 9-to-5. They are willing and able to put in the work even if it means working seven days a week for five years in a row. Of course, when they get results and are amazingly successful, people talk about “how lucky they are”, not realizing that for half a decade they worked nights and weekends. As Stephen Covey, the author of Seven Habits, once said: “Private victory precedes public victory.”
Featured photo credit: Viktor Hanacek via viktorhanacek.com