What Should All Entrepreneurs Know Before Starting Their Very First Business?
Entrepreneurship is practice of starting new organizations, particularly new businesses generally in response to identified opportunities.
An entrepreneur is a person who owns and operates a business enterprise, and who takes all the risks involved in the operation of the business.
An enterprise is any activity that provides customers with a product (goods/services) with a view to making a profit.
Is Entrepreneurship for You?
Welcome to Starting Your Own Business! You decided to take this course because you want to become an entrepreneur.
This means you want to start and run your own business in your community. You may already have a great business idea… or not… but you know you want to work for yourself, follow your own ideas and be independent.
You may also have aspirations to grow your business and provide employment opportunities in your own community.
Whereas the idea of entrepreneurship may sound exciting, it may not necessarily be for everyone. There are number of questions you need to ask yourself to determine whether or not you should go ahead with your great idea.
We will explore what it takes to be an entrepreneur and the personal characteristics that are important for entrepreneurs to succeed.
Characteristics of Entrepreneurs
Entrepreneurs are innovative; and as a result, are always able to see possibilities, which would not be normally seen by ordinary persons.
They have a strong desire to succeed; and so, it is often quite common for entrepreneurs to fail at several initial enterprises before finally achieving their goals and desires.
Also, entrepreneurs have the capacity to work long hours, ensuring that their business ideas are fully developed rather than, take holidays and time off from their businesses.
Some of the personal characteristics that make entrepreneurs successful include:
- A high need to achieve their goals, coupled with a high degree of self-confidence.
- Being prepared to take moderate risks.
- Resilience, being able to take “no” for an answer without giving up
- Having initiative and independence.
- Possessing leadership and organizational skills.
- Seeking creative solutions to problems.
- Having a positive outlook.
- Taking responsibility for decisions.
- Having a clear vision of goals.
- Having a positive attitude to tasks.
- Being enterprising (recognizing business opportunities).
What Does it Take to Be an Entrepreneur?
Becoming an entrepreneur offers rewards and challenges, like anything in life, really.
Rewards can include the fact that:
- You work towards achieving financial stability
- You control the outcomes of your business
- You control the type of work you do
- The work you do is meaningful to you
- You control how much you work or don’t work
Challenges can include the fact that:
- Investors and banks may not believe in your idea
- You may not get enough financing to start your business
- You may have to face many barriers as you attempt to gain credibility, like being a visible minority or having a visible disability, for example Before you decide to go ahead with a great business idea, you should reflect on what it takes to be an entrepreneur.
- Do you have the right personality?
- Are you willing to make some sacrifices?
- Are you resilient enough to push through disappointments in order to meet your goals?
- Is your family supportive of your intent to become an entrepreneur?
Entrepreneurship Advantages and Disadvantages
Now that you have a good understanding of what it takes to be an entrepreneur, see if you can come up with some advantages and disadvantages of entrepreneurship.
- You are your own boss
- You are independent and you have freedom and flexibility (working hours, time off from work)
- You may be able to spend more time with your family
- You do something that you enjoy
- You may make more money
- You will enjoy a challenge that will keep you motivated
- You may have to be prepared to work long hours
- Work may interfere with your family life
- Steep learning curve: you have to have a variety of skills and be able to multitask
- You take a financial risk
- You may not have any benefits, like medical care, vacation subsidy, etc.
- You may have found other advantages and disadvantages. However, the important thing is for you to be able to think through some of the issues and develop strategies to minimize their impact in your business and in your life.
You are now ready to move along with your business idea, on the path to entrepreneurship!