Being an Entrepreneur 10 Reflections on What It Takes
Being an entrepreneur:
- is becoming one;
- is accepting impermanence, hence expecting possibilities;
- involves both listening attentively and acting impulsively;
- is likely to expand vision through interaction;
- applies foresight, insight and hindsight—concurrently;
- has passion and caution;
- suffers and alleviates suffering;
- notices what’s happening;
- has inner direction;
- cannot be other than a lifetime occupation.
Being and entrepreneur can be a lonely occupation and involve much stress, but generally it’s not a career choice. Being an entrepreneur is something that happens as a result, often way beyond inventing a better mousetrap. Being an entrepreneur will involve a passion to do something that will enhance life and make for a community that better meets the needs of its members.
Most occupations that require a specific set of qualities or qualifications. This does not apply to being an entrepreneur. There are many studies about what makes for successful entrepreneurship and to almost every one, there are exceptions. From my experience, I have distilled some behaviors that I believe most successful founders exhibit, but you will be able to point to ones that I have omitted!
On a lighter note I have created an alphabet of entrepreneur types, each of which exhibits a grain of truth. The first three in the ABC will give a clue: Artisan, Bootstrapper, Copycat. The other letters are all in a similar vein and seek to demonstrate just how varied entrepreneurs really are.
To help provide perspective, I have also written about the non-entrepreneurial mind. It may be more instructive to think about what business founders are not. In other words, knowing what behaviors are likely to inhibit success, may help the prospective founder avoid doing things that are unlikely to be helpful in making their venture take off.
20 Things You Should Know Before Becoming an Entrepreneur offers some very helpful advice from an entrepreneur on the website of Seedcamp, a seed investment firm—well worth taking a look.