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What it means to be an entrepreneur

Learn about the 13 key characteristics necessary to own a business.


08/02/2018 | By Hotmart

Entrepreneurs are those who see, promote and take advantage of new business opportunities, taking risks to put their dreams, plans and ideas into practice.

It is common to think that entrepreneurship is linked only to the creation of new businesses, but this isn’t true.

Professionals who stand out in their work for always seeking the best and most innovative solutions can also be considered entrepreneurs, even in companies already consolidated.

The number of entrepreneurs keeps growing. This can be perceived from the strategic and creative ideas that seek to deliver increasingly more value to customers, which are booming in the market right now.

You believe you have a good idea, but are in doubt if you fit into the entrepreneur profile?

Today, we’re going to show you the 13 main characteristics that define what it means to be an entrepreneur. Check out each one to make sure you’re on the right path:

1. They are always studying

Being an entrepreneur requires constant updating to bring new ideas and increasingly perfect your business’ activities, services and products.

Thus, professionals must be curious and willing to always learn, because it is essential to study a lot in order to understand the market, know the public’s pain and needs and provide the best solutions for these problems.

Especially nowadays, when everything changes and evolves very quickly, it is essential to be prepared to adapt and bring new ways of facing reality to businesses.

2. They don’t give up because of mistakes

It is rare to find professionals who have never made a mistake at work. If you can think of someone, you can be sure that either you didn’t find out the mistake or that person is merely repeating what already exists out there.

Remember that we are talking about professionals who value innovation, creativity and constant improvement at work, which is practically impossible to happen without failures.

Entrepreneurs must be prepared to deal with mistakes and learn from them in order to succeed in their next attempts.

Often, in order to truly learn what it means to be an entrepreneur, you have to try hard before you get it right, especially when you’re investing in something new that hasn’t been tested before or isn’t quite solid yet in that area of operation.

3. They see opportunities around them

Many people miss out on incredible opportunities because they don’t have the ability to see them.

In the work environment, whether in the company you work for or in your own business, it’s easy to get caught up in everyday rules and activities and end up missing out on the chance of introducing new ways of thinking, doing, and acting.

Most people don’t even know what being an entrepreneur means and therefore, don’t identify their characteristics in themselves, which can be used to improve their work and the results.

Successful entrepreneurs are those who are able to go beyond expectations, notice opportunities and use them to their advantage.

Even in adversity, they manage to stand out because of their entrepreneur mind, their creative and resilient thinking and their capacity to transform the opportunities that appear into something real.

4. They have leadership skills

There’s no use in outlining the entire path to turn an idea into reality if you don’t know how to convey what you thing to others who work with you.

It is essential to know how to lead a team and guide a project in order to be an entrepreneur.

If you’ve started your own business, you’ll need to convey its values, mission and your passion for what you do, so that other employees can achieve the expected performance.

If you work for other people, by bringing an enterprising idea into the company, you will also need to know how to lead.

You must have the right skills to show the potential of what you are proposing and help in implementing the necessary changes.

It’s hard to get other people to accept your ideas and see the advantages they can bring to the business if you don’t have leadership skills.

5. They are committed to their business

This characteristic must be present in all professionals who wish to be successful, but with entrepreneurs, it is even more important.

Entrepreneurs are their own boss. Most of the time, this means making their own hours, organizing the activities and managing all employees, especially at the beginning, when teams tend to be smaller.

If you don’t truly commit to your business, there’s no way that it’ll work.

Keep in mind that one of the defining characteristics of what it means to be an entrepreneur is the ability to practically live that intention 24/7.

Of course, everyone needs a break; therefore, it is crucial to set aside time for other activities. But you should be aware that entrepreneurs need to be prepared to devote themselves to their businesses if they wish to achieve their goals.

6. They work efficiently and with quality

Here, we are also talking about something that shouldn’t be a priority only for those who venture.

However, if you are betting all your chips on your own business, you’ll need to work as best as you can to achieve the expected result.

It is important to remember that you will be responsible for guiding everyone else involved in your venture in order to make your idea work. So you need to set an example of efficiency and quality at work.

Entrepreneurs must carry out their duties with excellence and always searching for improvements, both personally and professionally. Only by doing so, will they guarantee the success of their business and convey a professional image to others.

7. They have good communication skills

Those who decide to become entrepreneurs need to know how to express themselves well. Both a traditional as well as a digital business require the proper use of language, clarity, empathy, and patience.

Having good communication skills is important when talking to employees and informing the rules, giving orientation, inspiring and transmitting the values that your business prioritizes.

In addition, entrepreneurs need to attract partners, network and promote their business, which cannot be done without good verbal or written communication skills.

Only by talking to other people can professionals explain their business goals and convince them of its potential.

8. They’re not afraid to take risks

When we talk about entrepreneurship, we are referring to a process that involves innovation and change, which requires a lot of courage and disposition to face new challenges.

Good entrepreneurs are those who are willing to take risks. But of course, this cannot happen in an irresponsible and unplanned manner.

You need to be able to calculate well the risks that your business can face, in order to choose those that can bring the best gains.

So by taking risks, you’ll know exactly what might happen if your idea goes wrong and you’ll be ready to fix the flaws.

In addition, a person who is willing to take risks in the business environment is more likely to test something new and reach a market that is little explored, increasing clientele and standing out as an authority in their area.

9. They know how to set goals

Let’s think about the following example:

You opened a clothing store a year ago, and at the end of the last month, you decided to make sure the business is profitable and what you can expect for the following year.

If you haven’t stipulated any goals previously, it will be difficult to understand at what point you were able to exceed, where it failed and what needs to be done to keep your business growing or at least, to remain stable in the future.

Your goals don’t need to be rigid and unchanging, especially in the beginning when you have little market knowledge. However, it is vital to work with your goals to know where you want to go and to outline the most assertive paths.

10. They’re able to work independently

Entrepreneurs need to be self-confident in order to do a good job and face all the challenges of entrepreneurship.

When professionals work in large companies, with several coworkers, teams and leadership, it’s easier to have an idea of their tasks, obligations and limits. In addition, acknowledgement of a good job is more visible, as well as negative feedback.

When they open a business of their own, entrepreneurs need to have a more independent and proactive attitude, because they will be responsible for making decisions and making everything flow well.

That’s why it’s so important to believe in what you do, so you can convey security to others involved, and to make sure you’re doing your best.

11. They separate their personal life from their professional life

We talked earlier that one of the characteristics that defines the meaning of being an entrepreneur is the ability to devote oneself to one’s business to the maximum.

However, in order for one’s professional life to be truly productive and positive, it is essential that you know how to separate it from your personal life.

This isn’t always easy, since most entrepreneurs end up working on weekends and evenings. But be sure that it is necessary to be organized as best as possible to handle everything, without jeopardizing your quality of life.

One tip is to invest in planners, schedules or applications to help you control your time and make time for all the activities of the day.

Leisurely activities, gatherings with family and friends, and leaving business aside for other experiences are ways to rest and renew your energies to get back to work.

Another way to avoid confusion is by separating finances as well. Keeping your personal money with your business income makes it harder to control what comes in and goes out, which can lead to headaches or losses later.

12. They take initiative

Being an entrepreneur is knowing that positive results don’t grow in trees.

Those who decide to venture into entrepreneurship need to know how to take initiative to turn their ideas into something concrete and profitable. After all, the market has given increasingly more preference to brands that take risks, bring something new and present bold and modern solutions.

In order to handle all of this, you need to be proactive and assertive in your decisions.

Merely having a great idea isn’t the key for a successful business. You have achieve goals and take advantage of the opportunities that appear.

13. They always seek results

Many people are afraid of working with numbers, but in order to venture, it is imperative to keep an eye on results.

Knowing how to read and interpret business metrics is the most reliable way of analyzing which actions are working and what needs more investments or changes.

Let’s suppose you work with online classes and need to know which content format your audience prefers: videos or podcasts.

You can test this by releasing two free classes on the internet to see which one will be engaged the most.

After doing this, you’ll need to check and compare the results to find out which one had the highest adherence, what type of audience each format attracted and other relevant information.

Without a critical analysis of the results, it is difficult to get a detailed and true view of your business and how it is being accepted in the market.

Start doing business!

There are several ways of becoming an entrepreneur, but nowadays, it is digital entrepreneurship that is attracting the attention of most people.

The idea is basically the same: create a business to sell products or services. However, in the digital market, this takes place through the internet, without the need of a physical space.

You probably access blogs, follow YouTube channels, have already taken an online course or have purchased something on e-commerce websites, right?

These are a few examples of digital entrepreneurship, but the possibilities are diverse!

Are you interested but don’t know where to start? In order to learn more about the subject, read our full post with the step-by-step process on creating a business on the internet.