Changing your Mindset
This section will focus on what interpersonal skill do you need in order to start behaving like a real entrepreneur.
It seems a bit “super-hero” advice, but it is not: of course, we can not guarantee you any success by just following certain rules / advices but we can guarantee that if you deeply think about everything we are about to tell you and start following some advices, you’ll start noticing profound changes in your life.
We’ll now tell you the habits and behaviors we have noticed to be common among all the successful people we have met during our professional life.
But first of all, you must think for yourself if you are really willing to change your habits or whether becoming an entrepreneur would be your best professional option. It takes time, effort and conviction.
* As you may know, Consuunt’s main target is helping Entrepreneurs while building their projects. This particular section is within the “Interpersonal Skills” area, so we’ll focus on habits and behaviors. If you are more interested on how starting your Business, please visit the “Entrepreneurship” area, or more particularly, its “Start your own Business” page.
Think honestly about your Goals
Before we start talking about common habits among successful entrepreneurs, we must make you think about what you really want in life.
This sounds obvious, but 99% of the time, everybody answers the same “stereotyped” statement:
- – “I want to become the next Bill Gates, make tons of money and buy a Ferrari… “.
Other more “realistic” (but uninformed) answers are:
- – “I want to work at a TOP Consultancy firm at any cost, with a six-figure salary and a fancy suit”.
These and other many answers we could receive are just naive stereotyped products from Hollywood movies.
Money does not make you a better person nor a happier one. It should’t be a goal by itself: some of the most miserable (not happy) people we have met, are richer than average and, on the other hand, among the most happy people we know there is plenty of medium-income families.
Your real goal should always be having a fulfilling happy life, and in order to achieve it completely, you should work at something you completely love.
There is where we wanted to arrive: You only should pursue becoming an entrepreneur if “its path” will make you happy.
Forget about the money, and the Hollywood movies. 80% of the entrepreneurs barely make enough money to live and have gone through difficult situations while building their businesses.
It is not better being an entrepreneur than a full time employee at a certain job position: it doesn’t mean you are smarter, taller or more handsome.
In fact, if you think about the average money made by entrepreneurs and full time employees, we are sure the full time employees would win the bet.
Think honestly about your Skills
We are not trying to discourage you about becoming an entrepreneur; we just want you to be realistic about it:
- We have seen so many people initially convinced about starting their own business that regrets in the future, that we want to warn you about it right now.
Your skills, abilities, strengths… play an important role within this initial analysis:
- Be sure and honest to yourself about your skills, and whether they would fit when starting a business.
Skills doesn't matching example
- If you have never been able to understand HTML in school: how on earth would you even think about starting your own Website?
- Despite how easy it is nowadays with WordPress, you would require certain HTML knowledge in order to get a successful site.
- If you have zero “commercial” skills: how on earth are you thinking about starting your own import-export company?
- Unless you associate with the right person, you should know how important these skills are.
- If you have always been a calm person: how on earth are you planning to quit your job and start a business that would imply traveling since the very beginning?
Of course these examples could not be applied in many cases, but their “essence” is very important, since you would never imagine how often people act not according to their natural skills but by mere instinct… and fail miserably.
Ok, so once you have meditated about your real preferences, skills and goals, let’s talk about the habits you should enhance in order to improve as an entrepreneur candidate.
If you are not really sure about becoming an entrepreneur, we recommend you to carefully read the full section, since the advices we are about to explain can be equally useful in both your personal and professional life.
5 Entrepreneur habits to enhance
There are almost infinite approaches about this topic, but we have tried to synthesize them into 5 main areas that mainly characterize an average successful entrepreneur mind.
Some of them are easier to enhance, while other are more difficult.
1. An Entrepreneur is Constant
If you read any entrepreneur success story, the first thing you’ll notice is how much time (on average) these persons were pursuing their main goal.
We mentioned it many times in the “Entrepreneur golden rules” section: if you have passion for what you work on, you’ll be able to keep going indefinitely. It is a whole life marriage, not a “one-night stand”.
From Steve Jobs to Jack Ma (Alibaba founder) what characterized them all was their constancy while building their desired businesses: They didn’t success at the very first step but after a long journey “along the desert”.
J.K Rowling Constancy example
You probably know how hard was for Harry Potter’s author (J.K Rowling) to complete her Masterpiece:
- She submitted Harry Potter’s book to 12 publishers that rejected her work.
- The idea of Harry Potter’s Universe came to her on 1990, being the last book published on 2007.
- It took 17 years to define, write, correct and re-write… the marvellous books she “gave” to us.
She kept writing and writing no matter what happened.
- Be constant in what you do, regardless of the time it takes to complete your goals.
2. An Entrepreneur is Perfectionist
Not settling for what you have but for what you can achieve.
Trying to improve everything you make, will guarantee future success since you’ll improve and improve over the years.
This habit, together with the “Constancy” above explained, describe a virtuous circle that is reachable for everyone.
Other habits we are about to explain are not completely (or a 100%) acquirable: your natural predisposition plays an important role in their development.
But being Perfectionist or Constant in everything you do, can be enhanced but just being disposed to do so.
Guaranteeing these two habits, you have “half the way travelled” and depend just on your willingness to improve them.
J.K Rowling Perfectionism example
Following with the previous example, Harry Potter’s author did not just write the whole books straightforward.
As you can check on Wikipedia, she wrote, re-wrote and re-wrote several chapters until they were absolutely perfect.
It is not a coincidence that all her books succeeded worldwide keeping their attractiveness until today.
- Do never settle for your first result. And once you think anything is practically perfect, try to think how will you do it better the next time.
3. An Entrepreneur is Tenacious
This habit, again, is closely related with the two mentioned before: Constancy and Perfectionism.
However, it is a more natural-determined habit than the other two.
It means being able to overcome all the hard times you may face.
It is not easy to keep the constancy while pursuing a goal for years, but if you have a pleasant stress-free life, you won’t have as many difficulties to keep that constancy as if you had a hard time.
J.K Rowling Tenacity example
When J.K Rowling wrote the first books, her life was everything but an easy life:
- She was getting divorced.
- She had to take care of her children on her own.
- As we mentioned before, 12 publishers rejected her work.
- She was practically poor when writing her first works.
She didn’t let all these events to affect her determination to write. She kept her constancy despite everything, and became one of the best writers of all time.
Being tenacious is a difficult habit to train, but if you have a clear goal you are passionate about, you can focus on it when the difficulties seem to drawn you.
- Regard it as a traffic light: if at the first difficulty you really want to quit, maybe you are not passionate enough about your goals.
4. An Entrepreneur is Multi-Perspective
Some of the best entrepreneurs we have met so far didn’t just invent a completely new thing from scratch. They took a pre-existing market and saw what nobody had seen.
Think about Bill Gates or Mark Zuckerberg:
- Bill Gates didn’t invented the first operative system; he designed the best one that perfectly fitted the needs of his time.
- Zuckerberg was not the first in designing a social-media platform. MySpace existed “long” before he launched Facebook; he coded the best social platform in its time.
Although it could be regarded as a talent more than a habit, sometimes these people are simply used re-think all they see in a new creative way.
Starbucks approach example
Starbucks is a good example of how a different approach can create a whole new business.
The core and origin of the business is “just a coffee”, but when we think about Starbucks we usually think of:
- Meeting with friends.
- Having a good time.
- Studying while having a coffee (and free Wi-Fi).
They re-orientated the cafeteria concept by turning it into a place where you want to spend your time and money.
* We are not sure whose idea it was since three people founded it (Jerry Baldwin, Zev Siegl and Gordon Bowker).
- When you have found your business passion, try to think how can you do it in a different way: an innovative way.
5. An Entrepreneur is Intelligent
As you may have imagined, this is the final and most “controversial” skill we’ll explain.
Don’t “fool yourself”: successful entrepreneurs are intelligent people. In the right place at the right time with a bit of lucky or help? Of course! But generally speaking, they are usually intelligent people.
Maybe they don’t have Einstein’s level of intelligence, but they are not dumb. Saying other think wouldn’t be fair.
It can be equally applied to successful employees that reached top managing positions: some of them may be there because they are family-related to the owners, but if they got there by their own merits they probably are intelligent people (as well as ambitious… and other factors we are not discussing).
Why saying is it so controversial? Because we don’t know whether it is possible to “train” the intelligence. We are neither psychologists nor neuron-scientists.
What can you do to stimulate your intellectual capacity?
- Read; stay informed about the Economy, new Technological trends… Try to expand your horizons by learning new languages, math, philosophy, etc.
- When you are studying and reading about new unrelated subjects, you may see something you have not seen before: a new approach, a market niche or an innovative solution for an old problem.
Again: we can’t guarantee its effectiveness but surely, not having any interest about anything is the fastest way to failure.
- Don’t be intellectually poor. That depends just on you.
The more you train all these habits we’ve just told you, the more chances you’ll have to success when pursuing your goals.
Don’t wait a second and start acquiring good habits right now.
It is impossible to guarantee success by behaving in a certain way, but if you don’t act with:
- Being focus on your main goal.
- Improving anything you do.
- Not giving up no matter what happens to you.
- Doing what nobody does.
- Linking different things together.
You will surely fail miserably when pursuing your targets.
The goal of succeeding is not nearby: it is a long journey that will last your whole life and only when the years have passed, will you realized how long did you travelled.
The best habits you enhance right now, the farther you’ll get.