In todays day and age the word Entrepreneur is thrown around like a hot potato between a group of kids. The term is so coveted that people and companies have gone out of their way to protect it. Entrepreneur Magazine and Entrepreneur.com actually own the rights to the word and will come after anyone who tries to create business around it.
a person who organizes and manages any enterprise,especially a business, usually with considerable initiative and risk.
I believe that there are 15 characteristics of an entrepreneur and I think that you will agree, it’s a damn good list.
1. An Entrepreneur Is Personally Growing
There is a saying that says people are like tomatoes on a vine, they are either growing or dying. The ones that are getting the most nutrients and not getting eaten by bugs are the ones that survive till harvest time.
Entrepreneurs always put themselves in a place where they can be taken to the next level in life.
2. Entrepreneurs Are Always Learning
Anything that you truly want to become great at in life requires learning new skills. Entrepreneurs make it a priority to consistently and persistently be chasing new knowledge. Whether it comes from books, CD’s, conferences or masterminding with other like minded sharp individuals, learning is essential to growing any business.
3. Entrepreneurs Look For Opportunities EVERYWHERE
There is never a lack of opportunity, there are only people who lack the inspiration to find it. We live in a world of endless possibilities. There are a million ways to a million dollars and you need to keep an open mind when your looking to grow your business. Remember, when one door closes, another opens.
4. Seeking Advice From Qualified People
One of my great friends and mentors Aaron Rashkin says that most of us have had 9,000 meals with the wrong people. I have to admit, my parents were well off, but they were no financial advisors and never taught me how to handle money. I have to believe that I am not the only one who feels that way.
Entrepreneurs take advice from people who are where they want to be in life. They look up to and chase the knowledge of people that they can emulate their lives after.
There are way too many people who think they know everything who don’t know much of anything. Do yourself a favor, leave it up to experts to give expert advice.
5. Entrepreneurs Invest In Their Future
I have never seen the money I spend in business as an expense, I have always viewed it as an investment. Any trips to conferences, books, CD’s or courses are a privilege to enjoy. I never say things like, “I have to go to that conference”, I always say, “I get to go to the conference” or “I get to buy that book”.
People are the only things that appreciate in value. With that said, wouldn’t you want to invest in something like that?
6. Entrepreneurs Are Willing To Pay A Price
When I say price, I am not necessarily talking about money. Paying a price means doing WHATEVER necessary to get the job done. If your dream doesn’t cause you to skip a few meals, stay up later at night, get up earlier in the morning and make you do things that “normal” people wouldn’t think of doing, your dream is just not big enough.
I remember way back when I first got started in this industry driving back and forth to Nashville from Atlanta. It’s about 7 hours round trip and I did it several times a week for 3 months. I did this after I got out of work at 5pm and I wouldn’t get home unitl 3 or 4 in the morning and had to get up at 6am to go back to work. Crazy right?
That my friend is called paying a price. When it’s just you on the roads at 2 or 3am, you tend to have a lot of conversations with yourself. You know what I was doing? I was earning my own respect. I knew that there were few people that were willing to do what I was doing and therefor, I was different and was going to eventually live like most people will never live. You are going to have to pay the price as well if you ever want to be an Entrepreneur.
7. An Entrepreneur Develops Others
“It is literally true that you can succeed best and quickest by helping others to succeed.” -Napoleon Hill
We are not born with the ability to lead. It is something that is learned. The skill of being able to develop others comes with time and patience.
I think that our creator (and yes I believe there is a god) designed us in a way that we were made to serve others. There is something about selflessness that just feels right. The reason why we have a lot of depressed and unfulfilled people in this world is because most are self centered.
The “What have you done for me” attitude is deadly. It needs to be, “How can I serve you”. When you do this you will encounter a feeling of fullness that is indescribable. We were designed to serve others.
8. Entrepreneurs Are A Blessing To Their Community
When was the last time you walked up and down the streets in your town with a trash bag and picked up trash. How about supporting any of the local clubs in your area. Part of being an entrepreneur is being an ambassador.
There are tons of needs in your community, you just have to open your eyes and be aware of them. How about stopping by the local nursing home and visiting some elderly that may have been abandoned by their families. How about supporting the local big brothers and big sisters, coaching a school team? You get the point, just be a blessing to the world around you.
9. Entrepreneurs Are Always Developing People Skills
People skills are essential no matter what business your in. Let’s face it, we live in a world filled with people and they are not going away any time soon. So how do you develop people skills? The best way I know how is to read and then put into practice. Les Giblin is one of my favorite authors and has written many books in this area.
The two I HIGHLY recommend are “The Art Of Dealing With People” and “How To Have Power And Confidence In Dealing With People”.
You will never outgrow your own self image. With that said you have to be consistently working on YOU. Reading a minimum of 30 minutes a day is essential to the success of any entrepreneur. The newspaper does not count. I am referring to self development books.
10. Entrepreneurs Are An Ambassador For Their Business
Why is it that people have no problem flaunting their new Nike kicks or new Buffalo Jeans but when it comes to their own business, they clam up like they are ashamed of what they have their hands on.
Believe it or not, you have a brand. You can either develop your brand or develop someone elses.
An ambassador can also be defined as an authorized representative or messenger. I have to ask, what is your message when it comes to your business?
11. An Entrepreneur Takes Responsibility
“The Cavalry Is Not Coming” – What this means is no one is coming to your rescue when shit hits the fan. We live in a society that has entitlement mentality and it is slowly killing our economy. The bible says, if you don’t work you don’t eat.
People like to pass the buck or blame on external circumstances for their situations in life. Not an entrepreneur. We take the bull by the horns and make things happen. Entrepreneurs realize that if somethings to be, its up to ME!
12. Entrepreneurs Understand That For Every Adversary Carries With It The Seed Of Equal Benefit.
Do you learn from your mistakes or do you think that someone else wronged you or the situation? Do you understand that there is always a lesson to be learned and that for every negative situation that arises in life, it can quickly be turned around to your benefit?
“Stop banging your head against the wall, that thing with the knob on it? It’s called a door.”
13. Entrepreneurs Have Long Term Thinking
There are a lot of people so busy trying to put out a fire that they can’t see past the blaze. Being a visionary demands that you are making decisions today that will have a long lasting effect on what happens in the future. A farmer does not plant his seeds and in two weeks go back and harvest his crops. There is seed time and harvest time.
“The decisions you make today will echo for a lifetime.”
14. An Entrepreneur Knows That Success Is The Progressive Realization of a Worthwhile Endeavor.
Success doesn’t need to always be tied to money. You can have success at just about anything you do in life. Every step is a lesson and an opportunity to do better. Remember to embrace the little things along the way. They are the stepping stones. You are a success each time you take the next step.
“A journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.”
Number 15. Entrepreneurs set goals and work towards those goals
You can’t possibly get where your going without some kind of goal. Having very specific, attainable, relatable and timely goals are crucial to becoming a true entrepreneur. No one ever arrives, you are always going somewhere and the moment you think you have arrived and stop setting goals you will slowly wither away.
“Doing something in your business every day, keeps poverty far away.”
So there you have it. 15 undisputed characteristics of an entrepreneur. If you can think of more I would love to hear about them in the comments field below.