What Every Entrepreneur Needs
Entrepreneurs have what it takes to build a lasting, healthy business. Most big businesses started as small entrepreneurial endeavours with savvy business people at the helm who understood how to balance risk with controlled growth. In a world where anyone with a get rich quick scheme fancies themselves an entrepreneur, it’s important to step back and take a look at what personal qualities and traits are needed to launch a thriving business. It may surprise you that businesses that survive for years or decades were often started slowly by reflective visionaries and that few “overnight successes” actually are.
A successful entrepreneur must embody the 3 P’s: Passion, perseverance, and persistence. Today, even the get rich quick ideas come with a hefty dose of passion, but it is the other 2 P’s that really count. Those first ideas are rarely the best ideas, and only business people committed to keep trying will survive as markets change and the business grows. So often, the first months or even years seem like the business is standing still or even moving backwards. Entrepreneurs who are committed to continuing to push through the difficult times will see that the ups and downs lead to a gradual climb to the top. It can be hard to patiently rein in passion and not get burnt out, but that is one of the keys to success. If the business doesn’t succeed today or tomorrow, just keep trying.
The patient and reflective nature of successful entrepreneurs serves them well in other key aspects, too. In order to effectively lead and communicate their vision of growth, they need to listen to their customers and partners. They need to be empathetic and really understand the message that others are conveying as well. An entrepreneur that just talks or barks orders can’t build a responsive and trusted business. Listening and empathizing should lead to dreaming and building a stronger vision. Entrepreneurs need to step back from the business plan from time to time and see the bigger picture. They need to be flexible and let the feedback and daydreams continuously strengthen their plan. A responsive business is a successful business.
To further gain respect and build a team of trustworthy employees and loyal customers, an entrepreneur needs to be fair and work hard right alongside their employees. Ask anyone who has run a business for decades, and they will tell you about the early days when they stepped in to help out with everything from answering phones to taking out the garbage. A strong entrepreneur recognizes and respects the contribution of every member of the team.
Of course, while these often overlooked traits of a good visionary are indeed key to lasting success, a good leader knows when to take the reins, too. A savvy entrepreneur can jump in and guide a project back on track and isn’t afraid to sternly redirect employees when needed. At the same time, a good leader is ready to offer advice and help others pursue their visions as well. Often, fostering a spirit of independence within a company leads to new opportunities and growth as employees develop their own ideas and build complimentary businesses. A fair and wise leader will look at other entrepreneurs in the field not as competition but as a chance to build the market and develop niches. Helping others leads to respect and business stability.
Spirit to grow and learn
Finally, a good entrepreneur never stops learning. Those early years of a business are always hard, but eventually, with enough perseverance and a solid team of supporters, an entrepreneur gets to that point they’ve dreamed of where their business is a success. The secret to maintaining that success is to keep dreaming, learning, and growing. Don’t rely on the team or someone else to keep up with the changing times. Those business people who made it this far because they helped take out the garbage in the early days are still here because they also introduced computers and fax machines at one point and later took their business online and harnessed the power of social media. Wherever your business takes you, make sure you pack what it takes to travel right along with it.