10 traits of successful entrepreneurs: How many do you have?

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As the saying goes, there’s no such thing as a self-made man. No entrepreneur succeeds without help and guidance from others, whether it’s from friends, family, or even paid advisors.

Entrepreneurship isn’t for everyone, it’s clear. But, how do you determine if entrepreneurship is right for you? It’s important to ask yourself what it takes to become a good leader. You will be responsible for most of the work upfront. You won’t be able to lead your startup and your future employees to growth and success if you don’t have the ability to do so.

If you only enjoy a few hours of actual work each day and the rest of your time is spent looking busy or hanging out with friends, want to have a steady but modest paycheck and benefits, and are comfortable with routine day in and day out, then stop reading and get back to your desk job.

By picking entrepreneurship you are looking for a challenge that is both high-stakes and rewarding in the long-term.

Successive entrepreneurs, such as Henry Ford and Steve Jobs, have similar traits. Starting your own business takes the ability to work well with others, which is why you should pay close attention to these 10 traits that every entrepreneur must have in order to be successful.

1) Visionary Leader

The ability to see opportunities and capitalizing on them is what every entrepreneur must have. But being a visionary leader means more than just coming up with ideas; it means being able to make them happen. Successful entrepreneurs are willing to do whatever it takes to realize their vision, even if that means working longer hours, under difficult conditions, for less pay—because they know that tomorrow things will be better because of their efforts today.

2) Great Communicator

The best entrepreneurs are great communicators. They don’t just communicate with investors or employees, but also with customers. If you want to succeed as an entrepreneur, you need to be able to craft a message for your company that resonates and connects with people. For example, if you run a startup that has gone through extensive research and development (R&D) for its product, tell investors about how much time and money you invested in its creation. Talk about how much thought went into your plan and why it’s important for them to support your product. In short, always remember that being an entrepreneur is more than just having a great idea; it’s also about effectively communicating that idea to others so they can buy into it and get excited too!

3) A Good Listener

Many people believe that entrepreneurship or leadership is all about dictating terms of being in a commanding position always. Contrary to this belief, a successful entrepreneur always has the quality of listening and respecting everyone’s views before presenting his idea of execution. But listening is not about being silent while someone speaks and keeping the mind busy with own thoughts. It’s all about listening effectively and crafting your response impressively. Unfortunately. only 10% of us are able to do that, research shows. Listening is also a superpower; It enables you to gain new perspectives, to hear what’s not being said.

4) Decision Maker

One trait that many successful entrepreneurs share is their ability to make decisions. The ability to make smart, quick, and effective decisions is crucial in any business environment, but even more so in a startup environment where mistakes can be costly and lead to a failed business. If you want to create a successful business (or any other endeavor), you must learn how to make good decisions. Whether you’re trying to decide on a product strategy or choosing whether or not it’s time for layoffs, being able to quickly analyze information and reach an effective decision will increase your chances of success tenfold. At its core, entrepreneurship is about being able to offer your customers something better than what’s out there today through your product or service offerings.

5) Relationship Builder

When you’re a startup entrepreneur, it’s easy to get so caught up in The Work that you neglect your relationships. As a startup entrepreneur, however, no matter how much of a workaholic you may be (and rest assured there are plenty of other workaholics in your corner), your success is ultimately going to hinge on developing positive relationships. I have witnessed startups fail because they made enemies where they should have made friends. If you can find a way to build strong and effective relationships, it will improve all aspects of your business. You never know who might be able to help or steer you in an alternate direction when needed. Remember: friends don’t let friends fail alone!

6) Focused on Winning

The success of your business is directly related to how well you play your hand, so you need to make sure that there’s no room for error. It’s time to get rid of all distractions and focus solely on winning. After all, when we say we want to start a business, it should be because we have an idea that can revolutionize an industry—not because it will put food on our table while allowing us to ignore life outside of work. If you think that means working long hours, try again. It means identifying where things are getting in your way and moving them out of your way. This requires a deliberate approach, hard work, and sacrifice…but then again so does starting a successful business!

7) Great Networker

As someone who’s taking a big risk and creating their own company, you have to be great at networking. You need a support system that will keep you going through some of those lonely times when no one seems to want your product or service. And since creating a startup is not only an arduous process but also very expensive, having networkers in place before launching will help ensure you don’t burn through all your cash before realizing success. Find some like-minded entrepreneurs and spend time with them; odds are they’ll have more experience than you do and can offer valuable insights into what you should (and shouldn’t) do next.

8) Determined to Succeed

To succeed in any business, you need to be determined. You need to be willing to work hard, even when others are not. You need to be willing to learn new skills, even if it means taking time away from earning money or spending time with family and friends. You need a little luck, of course, but more than anything else you need persistence and a will to succeed.

9) Prepared to Lose Money and Time

If you plan to start a business, expect to lose money and time. The good news is that you can recoup your losses quickly if you’ve prepared for them beforehand. If it’s just a hobby or experiment, no one cares if it fails; but if your heart and mind are in it, keep costs low so you don’t put yourself in debt. If worst comes to worst and you do go into debt, remember: You’re not alone! Between student loans and credit card bills, there are plenty of people who have been there before. Ask friends or family members for advice as well; they may know someone who is willing to help get your project off the ground with a small loan or offer some advice on how to pay off debts faster.

10) Resilient Even When Failing

No matter how hard you try, every entrepreneur will run into some setbacks. Even when things don’t go as planned, you need to be resilient and adaptable. Don’t get down on yourself—instead, think of failure as a valuable lesson that can make your business stronger in the long run. After all, everyone fails at some point; it’s how you bounce back that counts. Being a successful entrepreneur means keeping your spirits up even when everything around you is crumbling.


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