The Makings of an Entrepreneur

ThinkstockPhotos-486981984There has been much written about what traits it takes to make a good entrepreneur who starts their own business vs. perhaps the many people ideas of a Fortune 500 Company CEOs. Entrepreneurs are not necessarily the earth shaking innovators like Bill Gates, Steve Jobs or Mark Zuckerberg, but the ordinary person with a need to start their own company because they think that they have a better mouse trap or simply want to work on their own and have enough self-confidence to think that they can make it on their own.

Of course not all entrepreneurs are the same, as not all large company CEOs are cut from the same cloth. But here are some generalities. Entrepreneurs tend to be introverted. They are usually self-confident, risk takers, are creative, have high energy and passionate about doing their own thing. They have worked for others long enough to know that they are not the typical corporate types who find self-satisfaction and are energized by their relationships with others. They find working on their own and interacting in small groups gets more results. They cultivate working relationships with others and solid networks, do the time consuming analytical work and work synergistically with other likeminded people rather than just having social friends. Does the name Buffet come to mind?

This is not to say that extroverts cannot start out as entrepreneurs and become very accomplished people, but for the extreme extrovert, getting to the top, having power, boasting about their accomplishments and wealth and wining the adulation of others is their real goal. Does the name Trump come to mind?

The introverted entrepreneur has a limited tolerance for small talk, meaningless meetings and is unfulfilled about not being in charge of their destiny. They don’t need the reinforcement of others to validate their opinions or status. Although they are not hooked on social media, they welcome the validation of their ideas by those they respect. Many are engineers who by their nature are introverted and creative would love to do their own thing, but the majority are not techies, just people in general just are not risk takers and are more concerned about security. But most entrepreneurs are not techies, just people who believe that they can get more accomplished on their own.

A good and successful entrepreneur has a plan as well as a backup strategy. They are constantly checking how things are going and willing to modify their actions accordingly. They will create prototypes, test market new ideas, maintain a feedback system and use whatever tools they need and can afford to make either sure things are going as planned or make necessary changes. They know how much money they have to spend and watch their remaining funds carefully as they move ahead.  This is not to say introverts are all successful entrepreneurs; far from it. But most successful ones are focused (introverted) on their business.

MORE: Smart paths to the C-Suite


Michael Neidle

Michael Neidle
Michael Neidle is president and CEO of Optimal Management, an advisor to staffing firm owners and managers.

Michael Neidle

Share This Post


Recent Articles

Powered by ·