To be a successful entrepreneur you need to have certain attributes as part of your personality. If are a budding entrepreneur, the chances are that you already have some of these attributes and a little work and personal development will get you to the point where success as an entrepreneur becomes inevitable.
Since studying 100’s of entrepreneurs and becoming an entrepreneur myself, I believe that there are certain traits that you must have to be a success. Of course, this is not an exhaustive list but I believe if you can cultivate these 7 traits you will create an amazing level of momentum in your endeavours.
1) You must be Prepared to take Calculated Risks
To be an entrepreneur, you have to be willing to accept that nothing is guaranteed in life or in business. Whether you are going to have to invest time, money or resources and a calculated risk is definitely going to be required to realise a great vision. I truly believe that the greater the calculated risk, the greater the reward.
2) You must become an ‘Ideas Factory’.
The best entrepreneurs are those that keep having ideas. I was doing a little research on Richard Branson of Virgin recently and I was amazed at how many different ideas he has had and tried over his lifetime. He admits that he found so many successes by trying out so many of his ideas. What I have found as an entrepreneur myself is that the things that we create aren’t always going to be perfect but having the ability to constantly have ideas will eventually lead to successes as long as they are accompanied by intelligent application.
3) You must cultivate a Burning Passion
I am yet to meet a successful entrepreneur without an almost crazy amount of passion for what they are doing. They are always thinking about how they can add value, build businesses and turn a profit. One key thing is that it is never just a passion for making money. Their passion comes from building businesses around providing solutions to people’s problems.
4) You ask for Help whenever you need it
Successful people in general, not just entrepreneurs, know how and when to ask for help. You must become aware of all of your strengths and spend your time working on your true genius and then surround yourself with the people that can do other tasks for you. This is also a useful skill to use at home as you pursue your business goals because I believe that true ‘entrepreneurial success’ comes only when you have a successful home life as well. Help your spouse, children or parents in any way that you can and they will help you.
5) Your Excitement must be Contagious
When you are taking the ideas from your ‘ideas factory’ you are going to need the belief, support and probably investment of other people to turn it into a profitable venture. The most efficient way to achieve this is to make sure that you are fully excited about your projects when describing them to others. I promise you that this excitement will rub off and other people will find themselves ‘mysteriously’ excited by your ideas.
6) You need to possess a ‘Sickening’ Work Ethic
Actor, performer and entrepreneur Will Smith describes what he calls his “Sickening Work Ethic”. He states that he works tirelessly on his craft so he can be the best that he can possibly be. You have to be prepared to do this as well if you want to be a successful entrepreneur. You may be having lots of great ideas but it is obvious that nothing great will happen as a result of these ideas unless you work really hard. I have found this particularly true in my life as when I first quit my high paying job to become an author and coach I had to work, study and practice for 16 Hours a day just to get the ball rolling.
7) You need to become Persistent in the face of Adversity
Successful entrepreneurs are those people that use ‘failure’ as a stepping stone and ultimately keep going until they succeed. There are always going to be challenges and obstacles to overcome when you are attempting to succeed at anything. People who haven’t developed this essential ingredient for entrepreneurial success get so down about these obstacles that they stop and never find out if they were going to make it. You must become so motivated that you will keep finding solutions to every challenge no matter how difficult.
Well written article. Shared this on Twitter. Would like to check out more articles on your website
I couldn’t agree more. Each of these traits will set you apart and help you make it as an entrepreneur.
I would like to add 2 extra traits to the list:
Vision: Be able to see what is likely to happen and then take action so that you are ready when it does.
Initiative: The ability to get going on your own without someone having to tell you what to do.
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You are absolutely right that these are 7 essential traits. You have to take calculated risks to achieve anything great. People will not believe in you. There will be doubters but you must do it anyways. You also have to try new ideas because you never know where it will actually lead.
FAcing adversity is so important. You need to be able to believe in yourself and not give up. It is something that I have found to be a huge part of my success, aka just keep moving forward even if I feel like giving up. Once I get through that feeling, awesome things tend to happen.
Well said Jermaine and as an entrepreneur myself I can relate to each of these traits. That said, I hope you won’t be offended if I suggest a slight modification to the point about persistence because while there’s no question that persistence – moving forward regardless of the obstacles – is a critical entrepreneurial characteristic, in itself it won’t help you to overcome or bounce back from adversity.
That would be resilience which is the capacity to not only bounce back from all forms of adversity, but to see the opportunities for growth with the mindset that no matter what happens YOU will be okay.
Great article, thanks for the inspiration!