What characteristics lead some folks to be entrepreneurial in nature, and others are not? It seems clear that some people seem to really want to start new things, new businesses, new charities, and others would rather help run established organizations or a be a part of the fulfillment or implementation.
Are there some specific signs that lead to entrepreneurialism?
I believe so, and in a few moments, I’ll share them with you.
But first, I want to caution that just because someone has these characteristics (or signs) doesn’t mean that that person will automatically be successful. There are other traits that code for success (like hard work, determination, willingness to persevere, take criticism, and a willingness to constantly evaluate and improve, and so on), and without adding those success traits to the mix, and entrepreneurial person will like just start projects and stop them before completion, or dream about new things, but never put pen to paper to draw the design, or build out the new ideas.
So entrepreneurialism without implementation leads to non-success, but entrepreneurialism combined with success traits and hard work, can lead to entrepreneurial success!
Here are 7 of the signs I see that can indicate entrepreneurialism:
1. You are naturally inquisitive and want to innovate
Entrepreneurs tend to want to solve problems. In fact, they seem to be looking for problems – it’s almost like they have a magnetized brain that is constantly on the lookout for problems they can solve. They see solutions mentally, they see problems and are asking questions like, what is a better way to do this, how could I fix this, how can I apply something I know from a different discipline to be able to change this?
2. You are a grower – you like to grow things from scratch
Entrepreneurs tend to want to start things from scratch, they don’t tend to like to take someone’s else’s project and grow it. They like the feeling of saying “I did this” or “I thought of this and then implemented.” I believe entrepreneurs tend to have a desire to make things, to build things, to start things (and of course the corollary is also true: entrepreneurs often don’t like to finish things, or bear through the tough things once the idea is out of the oven, so they have to guard against this and overcome!
3. You are willing to do things others haven’t done
Entrepreneurs tend to be willing to do things others haven’t already done. To illustrate, a non-entrepreneurial person may want to only do things that someone else has already proven will work. But entrepreneurs are willing to try new things, they tend to not be so afraid of something failing or not working. If they can fix it, they see it as a great challenge, but even if they try something that has never been done before and it’s unworkable, they can often say, “that’s okay, at least I tried. Ok, onto the next thing.”!
4. You are willing to take risks to do big things
Entrepreneurs tend to value taking risks in order to achieve big things. They seem to recognize that big things don’t usually happen without a big mess, a big risk, big chances, and they want the result so bad they are willing to risk much to possibly achieve that big thing. This can be contrasted to other folks who are willing to do much smaller things that are more guaranteed to work for them, whereas entrepreneurs tend to have the attitude that it is better to try and fail than to not try at all (and of course guarantee they won’t fail). But I would argue that by not trying, they automatically fail by default, just like if you take a college class and don’t show up for the final – you may not have actually failed the test, but your score will be a “0” and you may fail the course. Entrepreneurs tend to view failure as what happens if you don’t try something, not something that happens if you try it and it doesn’t work.
5. You are a go-getter – willing to go where no one else has gone and create or get the market
Entrepreneurs are flat-out willing to do things no one else is willing to do! I believe one reason for this is that, as is some of the other signs and characteristics, they aren’t worried about failing, and they are willing to take risks and do things others haven’t done. So because they are willing to take risks and do things no one else has done, they can by extension be willing to go places no one has been, build things no one has proven, even build businesses that no one wants what they sell – because they tend to be willing to do the un-tried and unproven. And if it fails or flops, so what, what’s next?!
6. You look at businesses and think, why don’t they do it this way?
Entrepreneurs tend to constantly be on the lookout for better ways to do things. I have an unusual trait in that when I shop at a new store, I often wonder, is this place profitable? How much money are they making? I might try to estimate daily sales based on what people seem to be buying, and I try to add up their daily payroll based on how many workers are on the floor, and then guess what their rent and overhead is, to come up with a profit figure for the company. I have fun with it – and I believe that’s the kind of things many entrepreneurs can have fun with!
7. You want to improve the world around you, and get paid for it too!
Entrepreneurs tend to want to change lives. When they see solutions, they see them not just as an engineering or marketing feat, but they see them as solutions that can change lives. They see that if they can change lives, they can probably charge a fair price for it, and if they are changing lives, then they will get paid!
Entrepreneurs tend to have fun solving problems for people, innovating new ways to do things, and finding ways to make their innovations profitable.
Based on these traits here, do you think you are entrepreneurial?
If so, what actions are you taking to change the world, innovate in new ways, and change lives?
Are you doing things to improve the world around you, your industry, the area in which you are most fluent and can most effectively improve the lives of the people whom you meet?
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