This past weekend, I heard a song where the lyrics got me thinking about being an entrepreneur recalling words I have read somewhere and can only paraphrase now: that being an entrepreneur is living your life as most folks can’t or won’t, so you may enjoy yours, as few ever do. According to Webster, an entrepreneur is “one who organizes, operates, and assumes the risk in a business venture in expectation of gaining the profit”. This willingness to take risks to make money are key ingredients. If there is no real risk, there is just no entrepreneurial spirit. Most will agree with that definition, but it hardly does justice to who and what an entrepreneur truly is.
I have always said that investors that desire to live the life of an entrepreneur must follow their dreams, get up when they fall down, be willing to embrace failure, they are always learning, and they take action. Entrepreneurs pursue their dreams no matter how intimidating or difficult. They recognize that anything worthwhile takes time, dedication, focus, and hard work. They are persistent and it is that drive to keep forging ahead that sets them apart. When they do not succeed, they try and try again. They refuse to give up until their vision becomes a reality. They have the very same attitude that was once expressed by that great inventor of the light bulb, Thomas Edison, who once said about his invention “I have not failed. I have just found 10,000 ways that it won’t work”. Never afraid to fail, they recognize that every failure is another step closer to success. The inspirational author Robert Kiyosaki once remarked “failure defeats losers, failure inspires winners”. They push the limits of what they seek to accomplish. They are always imaginative and creative and always learning. They learn their art, then master it. Lastly, they take action. They have their vision, their plan of action, then pursue it and make it happen.
Catchy phrases all describing what an entrepreneur is come to mind. They are consummate success makers, profitably solving problems. Having spent time studying the success of others, they skillfully apply what they learned to the action they then take. They create, nurture, then lead. It is all about embracing their vision and all the challenges that come with that as well as all the success they generate as well. They are resourceful. They are continually pushing the envelope, continually test assumptions, all with the unrelenting courage to commit to their blueprint and game plan and persevere no matter the obstacles. They have an imaginative mindset that is expansive and opportunistic. They see the bigger picture. They look at the bigger picture then ensure their vision becomes their reality in present time. They exhibit strength in all they believe and have the courage and the drive to make it happen. They never give up. Being an entrepreneur is about giving everything you have when the going gets tough and never giving in or giving up. Like John Wayne, they have true grit. Their very aura is inspirational and dynamic.
Entrepreneurs are leaders by their very nature. They know that success is never an accident but always a choice. They know to be successful, they need to do only what they do best, then do it. Their very mindset encompasses their ability to think ahead, they work on their skill set and develop transferable skills. They see opportunities others do not see, then exploit them to their advantage. They know how to leverage the time and labors of others so they can provide their expertise to what they do best and know how to network and appreciate the importance of having mentors and then making effective use of their mentors. They are their own destiny makers. They embrace and adapt to changing circumstances whenever they must. They relish criticism and take it as motivation. They are determined and implement healthy sensible coping mechanisms to overcome any and all challenges and obstacles that come their way.
Being an entrepreneur clearly is not for everyone, but for those who are the captains of their fate, the boss of their dreams, and the master of their goals, if they have the mindset of being an entrepreneur, they will indeed lead a life that others can’t or won’t, and live as few ever do.