What makes a great entrepreneur? If there was a simple answer to that question the person who created the answer would surely be the ultimate entrepreneur – however, although there is no simple answer, there are certain qualities which successful entrepreneurs have in common.
So for anyone planning to create their own start-up business, they would do well to look at those who are already successful in business and seek to emulate the best qualities of successful entrepreneurs – but what are they?
We asked our friends from Crunch.co.uk to give us their take on the qualities start up leaders should have. They came up with these 5 great traits!
People often say that for a business to be a success it’s just a case of finding what you are passionate about and then turning that into a business but that is a naïve and simplified view. What is required is passion however.
It’s not about turning a passion into a business necessarily but it is about having a great passion for making your new business a success no matter what. You need to have a passion for your start-up, to really believe in what you are doing and to do everything you can to make it work. If you don’t have a passion for your start-up and you don’t believe it will work, then no-one else will believe in it either.
It takes time to set up and run a business successfully – stories of overnight success are wildly exaggerated so you need to have strong perseverance levels to be a successful start-up entrepreneur.
If you are someone that gives up at the first hurdle, or who won’t try something new if the path you have chosen doesn’t quite work out the way you expected, then you don’t have the right qualities to be a successful start-up entrepreneur.
It takes great perseverance to continue when everything looks black, or to keep following up calls with people who keep saying no. Successful start-up entrepreneurs will keep going to make their business successful and won’t give up.
3. Being adaptable
It’s really important as an entrepreneur to be able to adapt to different situations and issues as they arise. You need to be flexible for your business and be able to adapt your strategy when things change.
After all, the markets change daily, people’s consumer tastes change regularly and how much money people have to spend on your products changes, so you need to be adaptable and flexible. It might be that your original business idea has to change or pivot to meet a changing market place. Businesses which adapt and move with the times are the ones which last.
It’s not enough to have a great idea, a successful start-up entrepreneur needs to be able to make that idea into a real, solid, profitable business and that’s where the vision comes in. All successful entrepreneurs have focus and vision.
It’s about managing the day to day business while keeping your mind focussed on the bigger picture and your vision – your reason why you created the business in the first place – whether it’s to change the world, or right a social wrong.
Having a vision and focus is what keeps successful entrepreneurs driven to succeed when things go wrong and it’s what gives them persistence and determination to carry on. Without the vision it will be incredibly difficult to keep going through the hard times.
5. Willingness to learn
The final quality which all start-up entrepreneurs should embody is that of being a perpetual student. If you think you have learned everything there is to know about your market and your product, think again.
As an entrepreneur it’s all about learning, from other industries, other experts, competitors and your customers. It’s a constant learning process and you need to be asking questions all the time, looking at what’s changing and evolving in the world.
You need to be able to change and evolve yourself and learn the skills needed to run a business and deal with employees and finances and all of the other jobs that go with running a company. Being an entrepreneur means always having wonder at the world and learning every single day.
There are many qualities which go to make up a successful start-up entrepreneur but these five form the basic foundation. Without vision, perseverance and the willingness to learn new things, no start-up entrepreneur will have the skills needed to succeed in a new business.
These qualities mean the person has the right characteristics to take on new and difficult challenges and to learn from mistakes, adapt to change and move with the market. Someone with an idea but no vision, or a product but no perseverance, will ultimately fail.
An entrepreneur can learn about products and markets and employ experts to help with aspects of the business, but without the sheer ambition and determination to make the business a success in the first place it will fall at the first hurdle.