SIX CHARACTERISTICS OF AN ENTREPRENEUR
In the world today, there are millions of people who are involved in one form of entrepreneurship or the other. The world evolves everyday and so does everyone it, and also the economy and the way things are being executed. Changes and Innovation have become an important part of the 21st century or rather, the technological era. Though the concept of Entrepreneurship dates back to long years ago, it has become a substantial part of our society.
Entrepreneurship, simply put, is the act of creating a new business which results from individuals wanting to make their own choices, own their own businesses and bring their creative ideas into light. The term can also be referred to as a process of initiating a change. For instance, if an individual decides to start up a new business, (that is, a business birthed out of an innovative idea and something quite different and not available in the market) the individual is directly initiating a change in the market and giving people something else to use.
While the creation of a new business might fully be determined by the development of an innovative idea, it encompasses a series of characteristics which must be possessed by individuals who want to start up or create a new business. These individuals are called Entrepreneurs and they are people who bring up a creative idea for a business, either new or an existing one, set up a business structure, take risks and work hard to ensure profit is achieved.
From the above meaning of an Entrepreneur, two qualities can be determined; the ability to think out of the box and come up with an innovative business idea and the ability to take risks for the sake of the business. These qualities stand as fundamental characteristics for entrepreneurs as it determines the state and progress of a business. In the next paragraphs, I’ll be discussing the qualities that make up an entrepreneur.
SIX CHARACTERISTICS OF AN ENTREPRENEUR
- CREATIVE ABILITY.
This is what makes an individual an entrepreneur; the ability to come up with creative ideas that ensures the start of a business and initiates a change. Businesses developed by entrepreneurs can be of two main forms; a new one or an existing one. Individuals can either work on a plan that introduces a new product to the market or work on another with an already established market. Either way, a new business is formed and it leads to the concept of Entrepreneurship. Entrepreneurs must possess innovative skills to be able to develop a business and come up with ideas, when needed, for the progress of the venture. This means that, even after a new business is formed, the creative process doesn’t stop as it will be needed to help for continuity. An entrepreneur who wants his/her business to stand out must always be creative.
- RISK TAKING.
While every new venture strives to make profit, there are times when losses might arise and individuals will be in a position to make certain decisions and take some risks that might either prove to make or break a business venture. Decision making is an important aspect of starting up a new business and it is something that will go on for as long as the business stands. The ability of an entrepreneur to take risks is highly important. In a scenario where a business makes a huge loss or is on the brink of collapse, the entrepreneur has big decisions to make, hence risks. At such point, whatever is decided potentially decides the progress of the business depending on the outcome. However, some risks are too big and it is up to individuals to draw a limit to taking risks on certain occasions.
- MONEY MANAGEMENT SKILLS.
Asides possessing the creative ability to create a new business and the capacity to take risks, an entrepreneur must be money cautious. Money management is very important especially in a business owned by just an individual. Entrepreneurs must know how to spend money wisely and how to use profits properly to ensure the progress of a business. Individuals can come up with a plan or strategy that helps manage the funds gained from the business. A little mismanagement of the money could result in a bad turn for the business venture.
This is probably one of the lessons taught in Business 101 or Entrepreneurship 101 classes. Never venture into what you don’t have passion for. One key thing to identify in many successful entrepreneurs in the world today is the fact that they are dealing in what they have always had passion for or something they have always had in mind since their childhood days. In recent times, people have involved themselves with different business ventures, mostly existing businesses, because of unemployment or fear of poverty but the real truth is passion is a fuel for a successful entrepreneurship venture. Something about passion gives you the motivation and drive to keep doing better and getting the best out of the venture. In some cases, individuals lose interest or get discouraged after a turn of events in the business that might lead to a collapse. In such times, the passion one has for what he/she is doing helps the person thrive and look for solutions. One of the main reasons for failing or unsuccessful businesses in entrepreneurship or for start-ups is lack of passion.
In an entrepreneurship venture, you are solely the Chief Executive Officer, Managing Director, General Manager and in fact, the General Overseer of your business except of course in cases where individuals who create a new business, share or distribute the ownership of the business to one or several other individuals whose presence are critical to the business progression. In short, you are solely in charge of how things are run. Being proactive as an entrepreneur means preparing for the future and planning for events to happen long before they even start to manifest. Entrepreneurs like to think long term and put their focus and determination into achieving the set goals. “If there is a loss, what will I do?” “If the business runs out of money, what happens?” “If a competitor arrives and poses a threat to my business, what are the procedures in place to help stay in the market and stand out?” These are exactly how entrepreneurs think in the early stages of the business. The ability to answer such questions that may likely arise determines how well an entrepreneur can succeed in whatever he/she is doing. A single mistake in planning could affect the business seriously. “Someone who fails to plan, plans to fail”.
This is intentionally put as last on the list because after an individual creates a new idea, take risks, properly manage money, deals with his/her passion, and adequately plans for the future, the next thing is to ultimately wait for the proceeds and outcome from all the hard work put into the business, which in fact, is not easy. There goes no business existing without experiencing loss. Rome wasn’t built in a day. Sometimes, it takes a longer time for a business to establish properly in the market and others take a shorter time. As an entrepreneur, you should always expect the unexpected and when such happens, pick yourself up again and re-strategize. Enduring all that comes with setting up a business is one of the things that make an entrepreneur. Even successful entrepreneurs have faced hard times in the past, but their ability to endure and motivate themselves into getting up and doing better ultimately reaped benefits for them.
While these six characteristics can be considered as highly decisive in becoming an entrepreneur, it doesn’t stop there. Entrepreneurs should always pay attention to detail, make carefully developed decisions, take necessary actions when needed, always think outside the box and most importantly, stay dedicated and put in hard work. Nothing comes easy and so does entrepreneurship. It is all a process and it could take a long time but it will eventually lead to success. Following your own set principles and shaping yourself to the listed qualities will help you become a