Maybe you have asked yourself how successful entrepreneurs got that entrepreneurial killer instinct. They see opportunities and make it a success every time. Are those people born with it or is it something that can be learned?
There are probably some people where it runs in their blood, but I know that I am not like that. My move from the corporate world to entrepreneurship has been a bumpy ride. However, I am sure that, as long as you learn from your mistakes and you have a lot of desire to start your own business, you can be successful in owning and running a business.
However, if entrepreneurship does not run naturally in your veins, then you will have to spend more time learning the nature and principles of entrepreneurship. During that learning process you will of course make mistakes, but that in itself is not a problem. If you do not make mistakes you will not learn.
For those of us that have not been born with that natural entrepreneurial instinct, here are some things you need to do or avoid to be a successful entrepreneur:
Be aware of your Strengths and Weaknesses.
“Our strength is often composed of the weakness we’re damned if we’re going to show.” Mignon McLaughlin, The Second Neurotic’s Notebook, 1966
Knowing our weaknesses and acknowledging them is a real strength. It is only when we ignore and hide our weaknesses that we get into trouble. We are who we are and our strength and weaknesses are part of our makeup and makes us unique as a person. That special trait often gives us an advantage if we apply it to our business opportunities. Knowing your strengths and weaknesses also will guarantee that you ask for help when your skills and experience do not match those needed to complete a job successfully. Not asking for help at the right time can really mess things up.
Do Not Make Rush Decisions.
“One’s action ought to come out of an achieved stillness; not to be a mere rushing on.” D.H. Lawrence
When an opportunity presents itself, successful entrepreneurs will not rush into it. They are not impulsive and will take the time to evaluate an opportunity to ensure it will produce maximum benefit for minimum effort and resources and they determine if the opportunity fits with their goals and objectives. If it does not meet their criteria they will pass because they know other opportunities will come along that are a better fit and a better return on their time and resources.
Set Goals and Objectives.
“If you don’t know where you are going, you will probably end up somewhere else.” Lawrence J. Peter
An entrepreneur can significantly increase the chances of success by setting clear goals and objectives and by working in a focussed way to achieve those goals. Setting goals can be learned and become a very powerful tool in your business ventures. Successful entrepreneurs habitually start on a new project or business venture by setting goals and timelines. This will bring focus to what they do and increase their effectiveness. They set short both term and longer term goals and are not concerned about changing them if they feel that they need to be rewritten due to changing circumstances.
Strive for Excellence.
“Striving for excellence motivates you; striving for perfection is demoralizing.” Harriet Braiker
The successful business owner strives for excellence. He wants the best for his customers, employees and other stakeholders in his business, but he knows how to not make the mistake of wanting everything to be perfect. There needs to be a balance between what is attainable and what is affordable. They are in business to make money and know when a product or service meets customer expectations and
Maintain Balance in Your Life.
We find our energies are actually cramped when we are overanxious to succeed. Michel de Montaigne
The successful entrepreneur knows how to strike a balance between the business and his personal life. She or he is able to focus and work hard when needed, but also knows when to take time off and relax and forget about work. To maintain that balance is critical for achieving longevity in both personal and business life.
So the bottom line is that you can be successful as entrepreneur, even if you do not have it in your veins. Most things you can learn, but sometimes that means learning the hard way. However, if you have the desire to be your own boss and be successful, do not let fear hold you back. Many successful people have failed and many have failed several times.
“The greatest mistake you can make in life is to be continually fearing you will make one.” Elbert Hubbard, The Note Book, 1927