Entrepreneurs possess characteristics and learn
certain principles early in their start-up phase, and these equip them for life as business people
and make them good in their ventures.
Generally speaking, entrepreneurs are dreamers; passionate risk-taking, independent, innovative,
and goal-oriented self-employed people who control their future, and add value to the society
by changing the ways consumers make purchase decisions. There are nine attributes that make a
good entrepreneur which have been collated from own experience as an entrepreneur, learning
directly from seasoned entrepreneurs across West Africa, reading about successful
entrepreneurs across the globe and through personal interviews of everyday entrepreneurs.
Attributes of a good entrepreneur
Entrepreneurs are industrious. They are energetic and hardworking people. No lazy person can succeed at managing a business venture. Entrepreneurs do not have start or closing time. They may have to postpone or forgo their vacations. They are highly productive becausethey are smart at work and do multitask.
Entrepreneurs are frugal.
They live a Spartan lifestyle. Our ubiquitous owambe lifestyle cannot cultivate or sustain an entrepreneur. Entrepreneurs are prudent with money. Frugality
is not synonymous to the famed Scrooge of Charles Dicken’s Christmas Carol, but entrepreneurs are shrewd. They invest their money.
Entrepreneurs are sober.
They are temperate, moderate and level-headed. You will not lead a dull life because you are doing your own business, but being a good entrepreneur requires that you are a contemplative thinker. This is because innovation and creativity thrive in the place of solitude, reflection and mediation.
Entrepreneurs are persistent.
Sir Winston Churchill aptly described the typical entrepreneur
when he said “success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” It does not matter how long it takes, or how many attempts made, an entrepreneur does not give up easily. They stand resolute in the face of failure. Their stamina in the face of discouragement, rejection, hardship, adversity and fear of failure is sterling. They know and are constantly reminded that their business ventures may fail, yet they are diligent and determined to
succeed where others fail.
Entrepreneurs are disciplined. They are exceptionally professional. They do not cut corners. They are creatively smart yet do not break the law. The best is good for them and their clients, and they do not settle for less. They are disciplined with money. They do not mix personal funds with business funds. They are disciplined with relationships. They are disciplined with time. They are disciplined with service delivery. They recruit people based on competences and not sentiments.
Entrepreneurs are good communicators.
They are knowledgeable, self assured and articulate people
who know what they want to achieve, what their customers need and how to transmit their
messages to convince and elicit favourable responses from their customers so they can buy
their services. Entrepreneurs have eyes for details. They see what others will normally overlook. Opportunities to make money litter the streets, and entrepreneurs are able to uncover them because
they look deeper and longer enough to make a sense of such opportunities and convert them to
profit making ventures.
Entrepreneurs have the CEO Mindset.
They assume responsibility for and take ownership of duties within their sphere of influence. They are positively driven and see possibilities in everything. This is not blind optimism but a belief that there will always be a way.
Entrepreneurs are futuristic.
They have their eyes on the future. They plan their businesses both on
short and long term basis. Doing business is not like winning a lottery where you sleep as a pauper and wake up like a prince of the fabled rag-to-riches folklore. It is an exciting journey in start-ups, growth, maturity, probable decline and/or rejuvenation to outlive generations.
The road ahead is tough but you have to stick to your dream. There are no short cuts to being an
entrepreneur. Mr. Tony Elumelu, the accomplished entrepreneur, on Facebook in 2013 whilst recounting his experience in founding Heirs Holdings after his retirement from UBA Plc
as Group MD/CEO said, “Although I was mentally prepared for my departure, after years of being very active, the first days and weeks of
my retirement was tough. I was operating out of my study at home, but three years later, am
happy and grateful to God.”
Preparing to become an Entrepreneur
When preparing to become an entrepreneur, you have to begin to live below your means. You have to gather all the information you need to transform your idea into a viable and sellable service. You should find a mentor who has
succeeded in your line of proposed venture. You can attend trade fairs, exhibitions or visit your
local chambers of commerce. You can research on the Internet. More importantly, you can get a
business advisor or coach to work with you. You should learn all you can about your business venture. You can start small or on a part-time to test the market in order to get feedback on your readiness to launch out fully.
Test Your Readiness
Let us test your readiness to become an entrepreneur. Are you hardworking? Are you a spendthrift? Are you sober? Can you persist in the face of failure? Are you disciplined? Can you
convince people around you to like and buy a service or product from you, instead of other sellers? Do you pay attention to details? Do you have the mindset of a CEO yet? Are you ready to go all the way to make your venture work? Are you currently living below your means? Are you up-to-date and do you know evolving trends in
your industry? You are good to go, if you say “yes” to all. If you have between six and nine, you should get a business advisor. If you have below five, you should get a training to equip you for the life of
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Article written by Babatunde Fajimi and sourced from The Punch Newspaper, Nigeria via http://www.punchng.com/business/am-business/the-making-of-a-good-entrepreneur/