Entrepreneurialism, an adventure all in it’s own. A glorious representation of total and complete ownership and responsibility. Choosing to step out and create, and provide for others. It’s a wonderful goal, and time honored tradition that goes back since time began. The dream to own one’s own shop or magazine or hospital or finance company. The possibilities are endless.
While the work can be constant and the hours long, it fuels the entrepreneur’s spirit. Mainly because it is their passion, not their job. This is what they would be doing anyway even if they had a job. Chances are, that’s exactly how they started too. Striking out in fierce independence and making their own way is daunting and down right scary at times. However the risk is calculated and the potential reward is great. So into deep waters they sail where safety nets don’t exist, and storms shape them into skillful sailors.
Entrepreneurs succeed or fail by their own hands. It’s not an easy life, but it is fulfilling in it’s own way. I’ve been an entrepreneur for as long as I can remember. Easily half of the businesses that I have tried to start have failed, some in quite a plane-crashing-down-in-flames fashion. But I have learned from each experience. Each one I learned more, became better, failed harder, and got higher. It is one continuous wild ride. Ups and downs at every turn and the thrill never stops.
I am not one of those people of idolize entrepreneurialism. I believe it is important. Yet so are managers and employees. The fact of the matter is, most businesses (if not all) need other people to succeed. Oh sure there are some things you can be a solopreneur on. But for the vast majority of businesses we need people. The important thing is knowing where you’re going to thrive. I’ve known people who’ve tried to own their own business but hated it because they didn’t want all of the responsibility. They would much rather be in a managerial role, and when they switched they were much happier. I’ve also know people who couldn’t stay in a “day job” (for lack of a better word) for more than two weeks because they felt like it killed their soul.
For some people their work is not about their passion, but it funds their passion. For others, their work absolutely has to be passion based otherwise they won’t do it. Either way, one of the beautiful things about humanity is we are all different and because of that we all have a place and a purpose in this life.
So how do you know if entrepreneurialism is right for you?
You are Always Finding Ways to Expedite Processes Well
Entrepreneurs tend to struggle with status quo. They can’t help but shake up structures and processes. A great example of this is every single time I have to go through airport security (quite possibly one of my least favorite things to deal with), I come up with about 10 different ways TSA could be more efficient and make everyone happier, including themselves.
You Don’t Do Things Just Because It’s the Way It’s Always Been Done
This kind of goes hand in hand with the first point. There is always a shortcut, a way to do something faster and easier, as well as better. If you find yourself always seemingly contradicting “the way it’s always been done.” That is not a good enough reason for you to do it, especially if you can find a better way.
You Often Hear The Phrase “No One’s Ever Thought of That Before”
There is a story that so perfectly embodies this point. I remember there was a time I was on the phone with my internet company because they had charged me a “TV Fee.” Will and I don’t use cable so I decided to call them about that. The customer service representative explained to me that it was a general fee. I then suggested they call it a “General Fee” instead of “TV Fee” to avoid confusion. She told me that no one had ever thought of that. She had plenty of customers complain but no one had come up with a solution.
You are Creatively Thinking of New and Better Ideas
There are three kinds of entrepreneurs: activators, developers, and a cross between the two. Activators love doing start-ups. They get it funded, get the company in good working order, and hand it off to someone else. Developers might hire an activator to help them with the initial phase, but they are not so quick to let it go. This is their baby and they are going to nurture and grow it for as long as they possibly can. Then the cross-over. They love to start stuff up and develop it. Whichever category an entrepreneur may fall into, all of them love thinking of new and better ideas, whether for a new company or for their company to get bigger and better.
You have Perseverance
Entrepreneurship is not for the faint of heart. It has ups and downs. It can have WAY more fails than wins (especially in the beginning). Most people don’t understand your way of life, and then get jealous when you have what they don’t. It can get lonely. However when surrounded by the right people, it can take you far. I love this quote from Winston Churchill as it so embodies perseverance, “Success is going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.”
You’re Good with Money
Either you’re good with money, or you’re willing to learn and get better. Let’s be real it takes money to run a business, a lot of money. The better you are with it the more successful you’ll be.
You’re Good with Keeping on a Schedule
Ah yes the picture perfect beach vacation is definitely at the hands of every successful entrepreneur. However, there is still work going on during that vacation. I still usually work around 10-20 hours a week when I’m out of town. The business still goes on even if I’m taking a break. As well as sometime 80-90 hours of work leading up to it. Time management is vital, and you have to be able to keep yourself on track. The nice thing is though you can set your schedule, so bonus!
You Like People
There are so many people who don’t like people right now. I hear it all the time. If you want to be an entrepreneur you have to like people. The reason being people can smell bs from a mile away and if you only want to use them for what they can offer you and be done with them, things are going to go downhill fast. Such a fun part of being an entrepreneur is the various kinds of people you get to meet!
I love the life I have and I wouldn’t have it any other way. Even when going from failure to failure, I still loved what I was doing. What about you? Are you an entrepreneur? Share your business in the comments!