What it really takes to be an entrepreneur
You’ll read a lot of motivational articles on the internet about being an entrepreneur. People write about entrepreneurs the way people used to write about magicians a few decades ago. Like entrepreneurs have some special powers and are destined for greatness. As motivational as these pep talk articles are, that is all they are – pep talk.
You will notice that most of these articles are written by writers who aren’t entrepreneurs themselves but are working for a magazine or a blog. Even worse are the articles that entrepreneurs write themselves; for too often, these aren’t really articles but an advertisement for their business masquerading as an article.
Entrepreneurship isn’t for everyone
The reality is that being an entrepreneur is not for everyone. Entrepreneurship is a risky venture and it requires a certain temperament. The reality is that most people just do a job their whole lives and they are happy with their decision. To the young it seems like entrepreneurship is the only way to make money but there are plenty more. You have to understand that choosing entrepreneurship means losing stability. If you are happy with receiving an almost guaranteed paycheck every month then you don’t need to start your own thing. If you aren’t happy then we need to talk. If you really want to become an entrepreneur here is what you are going to need.
Motivation isn’t the biggest factor for entrepreneurs; drive is. One of the biggest reasons many entrepreneurs fail is that they fall behind in what they need to do. If you were to give them a set of instructions, they would be able to complete them easily. Entrepreneurs, however, do not have anyone telling them what to do. They have to initiate every task. It is easy to motivate someone to start running every day but it takes drive for them to get up every morning and go for a run.
You will often hear stories of famous entrepreneurs who failed miserably in their history and got their second chance right. The lesson to be learnt isn’t that it is okay to fail but that you should only fail enough so that you can go back. All the entrepreneurs who failed at first but later succeeded limited their damage. If you risk too much in one idea you may not be able to try another idea ever again. You need to have a backup plan. Not only will it help you if you fail, it will also allow you to succeed by lowering your stress/panic levels and allowing you to think wit ha cool head.
We aren’t talking about the clichéd “I’m going to be a billionaire with the biggest company” vision. We are talking about real vision, the vision that lets you see. Too many entrepreneurs fail simply because they don’t understand what makes their idea work and who makes them work. They end up involving themselves in petty disputes with their own employees as well as competitors and miss the forest for the trees. You need to be a good judge of character to surround yourself with the right people. You need to be able to realistically see whether your idea is viable or just something you are passionate about.
There are a lot of other things that will help you succeed but none are as important as the above three. As long have the drive to put in the work, the backups to bounce back from small failures, and the vision to realize what you really need to do, you will be able to do it.