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Traits of Successful Entrepreneurs

Did you know that 20 percent of new businesses fail in their first year, 50 percent don’t last beyond five years, and 66 percent are gone before 10 years?

Lasting entrepreneurship involves so many factors – it’s not just being an industry or functional expert, or putting hard work into a great idea. External inputs such as economic, market, and industry conditions play a role. And so does plain old luck.

What tends to drive a business to succeed, or not, is its founder(s). And many serial entrepreneurs seem to have a skill set that balances industry and business knowledge, ideas, intuition, the ability to build relationships and close a deal, and willingness to embrace risk.

Entrepreneurs are much like someone who goes up in a plane, and jumps right out without hesitation. But starting a business, like sky diving, is not for everyone. And though there is not one “successful entrepreneur” mold, here are some qualities I have noticed that many profitable self-starting-business owners exemplify:

  • Discipline. Successful entrepreneurs limit distractions and stay focused on making tangible progress each day to drive their business forward. This builds momentum and both internal and external confidence.
  • Confidence. Entrepreneurs also display an uncanny confidence in their product or service from the onset. They absolutely believe their product or service and that it will succeed.
  • Creative. Being creative doesn’t mean an entrepreneur continually invents products or services. It does mean they can think of ways to solve a problem either better, faster, or cheaper than others. Just one of those traits is enough, but two or more of the three are even better.
  • Open-mindedness. This skill helps with the entrepreneur’s ability for agile problem-solving needed in a startup environment. Successful entrepreneurs are open to new ideas and truly listen to others.
  • People skills and empathy. An entrepreneur has learned to inspire, persuade, and communicate articulately their vision. The can also soundly judge others’ characters.
  • Business thinker. An entrepreneur understands motivation and emotion, and they consistently view every situation as a business opportunity or risk, and ensure that the path they take is executed upon to drive beneficial results.
  • Competitive spirit. Finally, entrepreneurs are competitive. They’re not cutthroat, because they know that people generally want to buy from and work with people who wish the best for others. But they do embrace the truth that competitiveness and ambition go hand-in-hand. They also realize when it’s time to move on to the next project.

How does this list make you feel? Motivated? Tense?  Exhausted? Bored? If you’re feeling motivated, you may have an “E” (entrepreneur) personality. You may have what it takes to start a new business venture and see it through to prosperity. More importantly, you may have what it takes to have a fulfilling career as an entrepreneur.

Let us know how we can help you design your entrepreneurial business for financial success!


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