“What is our business?”
Defining your business is the most important task all entrepreneurs need to do in order to succeed in their venture.
Your business is not the product/service you offer. Your business is not the industry you are in.
That you sell dogs, is not your business; so do many others like you. That you make clothes, is not your business; so do many others like you. That you manage events, is not your business; so do many others like you.
Your business is the difference your company sets out to make in the world!
Your business is the difference your dogs make in the life of the customer. Your business is the difference your clothes make in the life of the customer. Your business is the difference made in the life of the customer as a result of your managing their event.
Happy New Year!
I’m so glad to have made it into 2012 and gladder that you also made it. At the start of a New Year like this, people are always in such high spirit having far reaching expectations for their life and business. As a result, many start the New Year with a list of to-dos for vital areas of their life or business.
This list of to-dos popularly known as New Year Resolutions is created in the same high spirit that naturally accompanies the New Year. Little wonder they barely help you achieve much!
Why New Year Resolutions Fail
The reason is this; New Year Resolutions are usually created with too much optimism that often makes the list overrated with unrealistic goals. Sooner or later, when the high spirit of the New Year begins to wear out, optimism begins to give way to reality. This is when you begin to lose faith in your overrated list of to-dos having realized that there’s just so much you can realistically accomplish.
The funny thing though is this; this wouldn’t still stop you from going over this process all over again in 2013. Why? Because the popular thing is often naturally easier to do than the unusual. Since everyone else is creating New Year Resolutions, it becomes quite easy for you to keep reinventing the wheel without evaluating its effectiveness.
In this unusual article, I will be sharing with you the unusual alternative to the popular New Year resolutions. Let’s begin!
Effective Planning For 2012: The Unusual Approach
Forget about New Year Resolutions, it’s just a list of to-dos that never gets done. Here’s the smart way to go; thoughtfully pick 3 words that will guide your thoughts, plans and actions throughout the Year. Then create daily, weekly and monthly goals for each of these 3 words and go to work.
These 3 words will serve as the underlying theme or framework that will influence your thoughts, decisions and actions in 2012. I first learnt of this idea in 2010 from Chris Brogan who since 2006 has given up on the ineffective idea of New Year Resolutions. I gave it a shot last year and found it very effective.
Why was it so effective?
This is yet another unusual article under the “Business Mastery Series“, a collection of unusual articles that focuses on helping entrepreneurs answer highly fundamental questions on how to successfully manage both themselves and the businesses they run profitably.
If you are new to naijapreneur or probably haven’t been following this series, I really wouldn’t want you to miss out on any of the unusual articles previously published. So, below are the links to them, the smart thing to do, if I were you would be to read them first, before coming back to finish reading this.
How to be your own boss
As the day goes by, more people are realizing that the allure of a secure employment is just a fantasy; one that is often short lived. The search for the next alternative which in most cases is entrepreneurship is growing rapidly. Never a time in human history has there been such a massive quest by many to be their own boss.
Recognizing this growing global trend is what inspired me to create this unusual article to help as many out there who want to embark on this unusual journey of entrepreneurship. It’s important I make this clarification; these are not all the possible FAQs on starting up a new business, there are many more. However, based on my consulting experience with clients, the ones covered here are quite fundamental and will serve as a guide to answer other likely questions you would most certainly need to answer as you progress on the entrepreneur’s journey.
FAQs About Starting up A New Business
First here are the questions at a glance on how to be your own boss;
- What kind of business should I go into?
- How Should I start; small or big?
- How Should I fund my business; use my own money or get external funding?
- How do I choose a name for my business?
- How do I differentiate my company from other competitions?
- What do I need for marketing my new business?
- Do I need to have a business plan or not?
- Do I need to have an office space or not?
- Do I need to hire employees or not?
- How do I price my products/services?
Lately, I have been observing the search queries [keywords] used by people to get to naijapreneur! One of the top phrases used by searchers to get to this site is this; “why become an entrepreneur?” or “why should one become an entrepreneur?”
This is an obvious indication that there are a lot of folks out there who are in search of valid reasons for becoming an entrepreneur. Luckily for them, I have written on this issue on naijapreneur precisely these two unusual articles;
However, the answers in these posts were written for entrepreneurs who were already in business and was intended to correct their erroneous perception of entrepreneurship as a money making venture only rather than a what it really is – a problem solving or value adding venture.
I didn’t write for those who were currently employees and were in search of answers whether to quit their jobs and take the leap of faith or remain stuck on the rat race. This is the essence of this unusual article, to talk about entrepreneurship from the employees’ perspective and to further encourage you who have already taken the leap of faith that you didn’t make the wrong choice.
A little word of caution, this is a long one, so brace up yourself for a long read –over 3000 words! But I assure, the patient dog will eat the fattest bone on this one. You will never regret reading it to the end and you will mostly like want to share it with a lot of people.
The Anatomy of Employment [Job]
A job is the work you do for a business owner and receive a reward in the form of salaries or wages. It has fixed schedules and a very clear description of what is expected of you. A job is also the position you own in an organization for which you are expected to fulfill certain functions in order to get paid.
The availability of a position in an organization and your consistent ability to perform certain functions are the two key factors that determine the ownership of a job. Meaning that you can own a job so long as an organization has a vacant position you can occupy and certain problems they need you to solve.
In other words, a job basically means trading your time, skills, experience, knowledge, talent, ideas, and contacts in an organization based on the requirements of the position you occupy in exchange for a financial reward known as salary or wages.
As a result, every employee is a seller of time, skills, experience, knowledge, talent, ideas, and contacts while an employer is the buyer of all these things.
Time, skills, experience, knowledge, talent, ideas, and contacts are the value an employee brings to an organization for which the employer agrees to pay a certain amount of money in return for the right to own and use these things however he/she pleases. A job therefore, is a functional position employees are paid to occupy for a specified period of time.
A job is a risky thing to own
There’s an age long saying that goes like this; “there’s always two sides to every story”. The same is true for every concept ever conceived by man. There are several sides to every idea, concept, theory or thing in life; what really differs is not the concept, idea, theory or thing itself, but ‘how’ we humans perceive or see them.
What really changes, is how we think about these things; the individual subjective meanings we attribute to them. And as it’s been scientifically proven, we humans see and interpret things from our own angle, that is, from our own side of the story.
Rarely do we try to understand and view things from the other side of the story; that is, looking at things from the other person’s perspective. A much clearer understanding is often gained when we try to see the whole angles or sides to a thing. Only then can we accurately make the right decisions and take the right actions.
So what has this got to do with the issue of becoming an entrepreneur?
In every organization, there are basically two parties involved;
- Workers [employees] and
- Owners [employers].
A job [functional position] is what every employee owns in an organization, assets are what every employer owns in an organization.
Everything in an organization, including the workers is an asset to the employer. And with every asset owned by an employer, comes a certain cost of maintenance. This cost of maintaining an asset is regarded as a liability.
An asset is anything that is capable of making you earn money [generate income] and a liability is anything that is capable of making you spend money [extract income].
To employees, a job is a source of income [asset] because it brings money into their pocket. To an employer, an employee is both a source of income [asset] and an expense [liability]. How?
A worker is only an asset so long as he/she is still capable of generating income for the business by consistently performing certain functions; remember our definition of a job? But always a liability in that money goes out of the business in the form of salaries and wages [cost of maintaining assets] paid out to workers regularly.
These are the two sides to the story of employment; the employees’ side and the employers’ side. What every employee regards as an asset [generates money] to them is what every employer regards as a liability [extracts money].
The very same money employees regard as income is what employers regard as expenses. If you were to ask every accountant this question; “on what side is salary and wages categorized in the financial report of every organization?” They would gladly tell you that it falls under the operating expenses column of the profit and loss account.
The really funny thing is that neither the employees nor the money paid out as salaries or wages to them are regarded or treated as assets in the financial records of a business or organization.
The balance sheet is the only financial statement that describes the overall assets and liabilities of a business or organization. But guess what? There’s no record of employees and the money paid out to them. Why? Because the income employees earn is the cost employers bear as a result of using the employees as assets for generating money for the business.
Both the employees and the money paid out to them are regarded as cost of operation and are written off as such in the profit and loss account of every business or organization. I honestly wish there’s an easier or less harsh way to put this, but I am sorry for what I am about to say next.
As an employee, you are an expense [liability] to the organization you work for!
Truth is bitter!
Believe me, there’s absolutely no easier way to put this than I just did. It didn’t feel good too when I realized this bitter truth. For crying out loud, as an employee, you’re being used as an income generating tool. Meaning you are very, very expendable – they can do without you.
Because you are only as good as the money you make the company or your employer. They can willingly get rid of you whenever they wish or think you are no longer valuable and only they can determine how valuable you are or not on the job.
There you are!
Why do you think it’s always easy for employers to lay off employees at the slightest economic down turn? Because they want to cut down on operating expenses and unfortunately for the employees, they are top on the list of operating expenses.
So when push comes to shove, and every employer is faced with the harsh realities of survival, the workers are the very first point of call when it comes to the reduction of operating expenses in every organization.
Whether it is a profit making organization [business] or not for profit organization [social], salaries and wages paid to employees is always an expense. It’s because of this singular reason that has made a job a risky thing to own.
Because in the end, what you think you own and call an asset because it brings you money is what the very person [employer] who controls how much money your so called asset [job] generates for you, considers otherwise.
To them, they own you [asset] and because you are a source through which money is extracted from them [liability], they can decide to let go of you whenever they feel they can no longer put up with your cost of maintenance – expenses!
What are you working for, a job or a business?
I can almost hear you screaming out these words right now in your thought; “but employees also make employers money [asset], in fact, without the employees, employers can’t do business.”
Very true, quite true indeed. But here’s the real truth; the estimation of the value you bring as an employee to an organization is best evaluated by the owner. And if the owner says, “Hey Tom, your services are no longer needed in this organization; therefore, you are hereby fired!”
There’s little or nothing anyone can do about that, the highest you would get is a fair compensation for the dismissal. And if the organization pays out any form of gratuity or pension, the better for you. Besides that, nothing else counts. You are fired, is you are fired. Nothing more, nothing less.
So if I were you, rather than argue about your perceived right as an asset in the eyes of an employer, I would begin to take my financial future more seriously than banking on one job which obviously will never be my own. The earlier you come to terms with this reality, the better for you and everyone you love.
The outcome of your financial future is not in the hands of your employer, neither is it in the hands of the government. Your financial future is in your hands, decide today what you want it to be. I have written this unusual article to help you confront the bitter truth of your financial future and challenge you to take up the responsibility of putting an end to financial struggle in your life.
As it is increasingly becoming obvious, most especially since after the global economic meltdown, everyone is getting to face the often avoided truth that there’s no such thing as job security. The only security is the one you build, own and control yourself – a business. Counting on a job to make you financially secure is an illusion that you need to wake up from fast!
Why it pays to work on a business rather than a job
A job is short term solution to a lifelong problem. Staking all your life on it will be a fatal mistake. The problem [financial struggle] will continually outpace the solution [paycheck] you are proffering. This is because a job was never created to solve your financial problems for life. It was designed to make you needy [dependent] for life. It was designed to pacify [make less painful] the problem of lack of money but never to nullify [abolish] it.
As long as the job remains, the trick is to make your financial problems less obvious. But once the job stops, that same old problem of lack of money which was never actually solved suddenly resurfaces again. Why? Because all a job does is to shift your focus from the problem [financial struggle] to the paycheck [temporary cure for lack of money].
For as long as the paycheck keeps coming, your problem of lack of money appears to be over.
But is it really over?
What you never stop to ask yourself is this; “who is actually making the problem of lack of money less painful, me or my boss?” If you ever come to this realization, then maybe you’ll stop feeling secure about an uncertain job. The feeling of being secure can only come from what you have a direct control over.
How can you feel secure about a job your boss directly controls? How can you feel secure when you are not in charge? How can you call a job yours when someone else designed the position you currently occupy? How can you feel secure or safe about a company you work for?
The very notion of “a job” negates the essence of security. Remember, a job is only a functional position you are being paid to occupy for a specified period of time.
It always has an expiration date. Security can only come from being in control and you can only control what you own. Unfortunately, in all my short stay on earth, I’ve never come across a job that is owned. What I’ve seen so far are job positions that were created for people to occupy.
Just because you fill the position doesn’t make you the owner and since you’re not the owner, you can be replaced. Why? Because a job you call your own is only yours to own temporarily as long as the boss says so.
Owning a Job VS owning a Business
A job was created to be “worked in” [physical engagement] and not to be “worked on” [mental engagement]. A job is like a car; you’ve got to be in it before you can drive it. Your physical engagement will always be a requirement.
There’s no other way to having a job than to “work in” one. You can never be free from what you “work in” [job], you can only be free from what you “work on” [business]. The former [job] requires all your time, while the later requires some of your time.
You do a job, but you build a business. You engage in a job, but you create a business. You are inside one doing all the work [job], but on top of the other calling all the shots [business].
A job requires your presence to make money; a business depends on asset to generate money. A job gives you money [active income]; a business makes you wealth [passive income]. The difference is TIME.
A job takes your time and gives you money, but a business frees your time and still gives you money. In a job, your time, skills, experience, knowledge, talent, ideas, and contacts is being exchanged for money; the more money you make, the less time you have. And time is an irreplaceable resource, once used it can never be replaced.
Eventually, you would run out of time because there’s a universal constraint placed on every human–AGE.
Remember the two key factors that determine the ownership of a job –availability of a position in an organization and your consistent ability to perform certain functions. Well I have got news for you; age is the barrier to them both.
The older we grow, the less we can physically do. The less we can physically do, the less functional positions we will be needed by employers to occupy.
Ultimately, as we age we lose our capacity to physically perform. Life has been designed in such a way that there’s an opposite relationship between age and our capacity to perform. As age goes up, our capacity to perform comes down.
This implies that there’s a deadline on our working years; much like an expiration date when despite our increasing needs, the ability to work would have diminished. The reality of this fact of life poses a rather disturbing question to you; “how long will your earned income serve you when your working years are over?”
I am sure you’ve never thought of asking yourself that question. Don’t wait till that time to find out, it would be too late then; now is the best time to start. START NOW!
Are you saying being an Employee is bad?
There is nothing bad with being an employee per se. At some point or the other in our adult lives we would be engaged in some form of employment or the other. But here is the truth, a job or being employed is a transition. Meaning, it’s not the end, but only a means to an end.
What is bad is holding on to employment as the solution to the long term problem of financial struggle. What is bad is thinking that a job is all you need to be financially free or secured. The inherent danger of employment is being caught in the rat race for life.
It is when you begin to view your job as the way out of your financial struggle that makes employment bad. Having a job isn’t bad, betting all your financial future on it is what is bad. Having a job isn’t bad, thinking it’s all you need to be wealthy is what is bad. Why? Because as you’ve seen so far, a job is a short term solution [paycheck] to a long term problem [financial struggle].
You cannot solve a permanent problem with a temporary solution. That you are employed in a job right now is good, forgetting to do anything on your own that will guarantee your financial future apart from your job is what is bad. As you work, always bear it in mind that a job is only temporary and therefore you must begin to plan on how to start your own business.
Never let the illusion of a paycheck distract your vision of a financially free future. You can start a part time business that will help you build assets [wealth] while you are still working for a paycheck [money].
Don’t get carried away by the temporary thrill of working for money that you forget to start building a business that will guarantee perpetual wealth. Money is too short a solution to solve a long term problem of financial struggle. Wealth and not money, is the lasting solution to financial struggle!
If you got this far, thumbs up to you!
So what do you think of my anatomy of employment? Did you find it useful, enlightening or disturbing?
To the entrepreneurs reading this, do you honestly feel becoming an entrepreneur was the best decision of your entire life? Do you have any regrets?
To you employee reading this, do you honestly feel this way about employment?
Kindly share your thoughts and comments below.
One Last Thing!
Please retweet on twitter, share and like this post on facebook, linkedin and google+. If it made a difference on you, it will on others too!
This is the second article of a new series, I have tagged it “Business Mastery Series”. Throughout this series, I will be
addressing some key issues that are pertinent to your success in business as an entrepreneur.
If you missed out on the first article, you can read it here;
Marketing is a core business function; to a large extent the success of your business is dependent on it. But from personal observations, not many entrepreneurs go about their marketing as they ought to. If at all they do, they don’t approach it holistically and so end up leaving so many stones unturned.
They tend to focus more on the selling part of marketing and overlook the other vital parts that naturally make selling unnecessary. The truth is this, if you approach marketing holistically, you will find out that you don’t need to ‘sell’; your products/services will naturally sell themselves.
There is an unusual way to marketing –the holistic way.
To attain the significant level of success you desire in your business, marketing must be seen as one whole concept involving several key activities that must be carried out by everyone in your business beginning with you the entrepreneur. In other words, when it comes to marketing, no one is to be exempted!
All entrepreneurs create businesses.
So what makes the difference?
A set of unique attributes that clearly draws the line between ordinary entrepreneurs and their extra-ordinary counterparts. Don’t be alarmed by this, in the business world, there exists two kinds of entrepreneurs; those who do business as usual and those who don’t. Obviously, they will end up creating only two kinds of businesses.
For those who do business as usual, I refer to them as average or ordinary entrepreneurs and for those who do business NOT as usual; I refer to them as unusual or extra-ordinary entrepreneurs. The average entrepreneurs don’t really deserve much explanation, their title says it all – they are just average.
Meaning, at most, they are only capable of creating “good” businesses, but rarely ever create “great” businesses like the unusual entrepreneurs do. To know the difference between a good business and a great business, download the free ebook: the entrepreneur’s journey.
An unusual breed of entrepreneurs
Ever wondered what separates great entrepreneurs from mediocre ones? Ever wondered what makes entrepreneurs like Richard Branson of Virgin, Oprah Winfrey, Jeff Bezos of Amazon, Sam Walton of Wal-Mart, Tony Tsei of Zappos and the legendary Steve Jobs of Apple extra-ordinary?
It has been my central focus for the past 6 years researching and studying the lives and businesses of these unusual kinds. It’s been my goal to uncover those set of qualities that distinguishes them amongst others.
As a matter of fact, I created this site [naijapreneur] to chronicle and share freely with the world my findings on how these seemingly ordinary men and women create and build truly extra-ordinary businesses from scratch.
In this unusual article, I want to share as always some of my most recent findings about what it takes to become an unusual entrepreneur.
The 3-way approach
The making of an unusual entrepreneur is dependent on 3 critical factors;
- Character – the will to succeed
- Competence – the will to prepare
- Results – the will to execute
An unusual entrepreneur is a person of character. An unusual entrepreneur is not your everyday individual. An unusual entrepreneur is exactly the title they bear – unusual. Perhaps one of the best descriptions ever given about an unusual entrepreneur was given by one himself, Steve Jobs;
“Here’s to the crazy one, the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round peg in the square holes …because the ones who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do!”
This is where it all begins –within. Every endeavour whether in life or in business begins first within and then without. The first order of things to be changed is you, the individual. Character is about your person; what stuff are you made up of? What do you represent? What makes you thick? What drives you? What guides you?
Character is about your will to succeed. A person can only go as far as his/her character allows. The journey within outweighs the one outside; no man can rise above the limits of his own character. In other words, your character determines your success either in life as well as in business. Who you are ultimately defines what you achieve –your success or failure. Defining character is the first step to greatness.
What is character?
Character means ‘wholeness’. It is the summation of several qualities, behaviours and thoughts that reveals the totality of a person. Character is not only a question of what a person does [action] it also includes both how you do [attitude] and why you do [thought].
Character is the whole of a person; an integration of “what you do” [actions, behaviours]; “how you do” [disposition, attitude]; and “why you do” [intention, thought]. It’s the summation of these three parts that makes up the whole of a person’s character.
How is Character formed?
Why do you think the way you do? Values. Why do you behave the way you do? Values. Values are a set of deeply held beliefs, principles, qualities, standards or virtues that inspire and guides how we do (attitude) and why we do (thoughts). Values are at the core of our attitudes, thoughts and dispositions; the combination of what we believe in and how we behave.
Habits are what you do (actions) as a result of what you believe and have accepted as true. Habits are your values in action. Your values are manifested through your habits. Your values are the source of your habits. If you have the wrong values, you will exhibit the wrong habits.
Here are some highly effective habits of unusual entrepreneurs;
Character focused on the internal requirements of an unusual entrepreneur; the personal development phase. That is, who they need to become on the inside in order to lead on the outside. Competence on the other hand, is where the unusual entrepreneur develops the basic business skills needed for exceptional performance.
Competence is the business development phase of an unusual entrepreneur. It explores the external requirements of entrepreneurship. That is, what you need to know technically in order to perform externally. If character is the personal side of business [personal development] competence is the technical side of business.
Character is how the entrepreneur develops the capacity to succeed. While competence enables the entrepreneur prepare for success by developing the required skills for succeeding in business. However important character is, without competence which is the actual knowledge and skill needed to start, run and grow a business successfully, an entrepreneur will only be a dreamer.
What is competence?
Competence is the ability and skill required to carry out a particular function, activity, task or set of duties. It refers to the willingness of the entrepreneur to prepare by gathering the skill set necessary for the unusual journey embarked on.
The competencies required by an entrepreneur to exceptionally fulfill the responsibilities of his/her position are of two categories; leadership and management. Starting a business requires entrepreneurial competence, working with people requires leadership competence and growing a business requires managerial competence. An unusual entrepreneur relies on both competencies to effectively and efficiently function in business.
Competence = leadership skills + management skills
I know you are the owner of your business no doubt, but you also need to understand this fact; building a successful business takes the collective efforts of others and not just the effort of only you the owner. It is not a one man show.
Before you chose to become a business owner, success was very much all about you and the result of your personal efforts, but now that you’re building your own business; success is all about others and the result of their collective efforts.
The success or failure of an organization depends largely on how well the entrepreneur performs as a leader. As an unusual entrepreneur, your role as a leader demands that you shift your focus from yourself and begin to focus more on others and what you can collectively achieve as a team.
The focus and function of the unusual entrepreneur’s role as a leader stems from his character as an individual. Without sound character the entrepreneur cannot function exceptionally as a leader. Leadership is about inspiring and motivating people towards the fulfillment of a predetermined goal, aim or objective; this is often referred to as VISION.
The combination of character mixed with vision is what makes an ordinary person become an extra-ordinary leader. You cannot be in front if you don’t have a firm idea of where you’re going [vision] and you cannot inspire others to follow if you haven’t first led yourself [character].
Character makes you a leader, but you need vision to lead others. Inspiring them to fulfill that vision is the job of a leader and the essence of leadership.
Every business has a way of operating that makes it completely different from any other business in the world. Ever wondered how some companies keep attracting and retaining high performing workers while others struggle to keep just a handful?
Have you ever walked into some business premises and without being told, you could feel a sense of intense energy in the air? How come some workers find fulfillment at their place of work and others don’t? How is it that some businesses in the same industries do better than others?
The answer to all these and so many more is management. As individuals are unique such that there are never any two people one hundred percent alike, the same is true of businesses regardless of whether they produce similar products or serve similar markets.
What makes the difference? Management.
After all is said and done, the day-to-day activities of a business purely rest on the competence of management. It’s possible for a business to have a great leader and a great product, but without great management practices in place, the business cannot exist for long.
Business is like a puzzle, the entrepreneur paints the whole picture but management is the one who begins to arrange them one after the other, putting each piece in its rightful place. Management puts the whole pieces together and brings everything into proper perspective by creating an organization.
Management takes everything the business is about and weaves it into one big and integrated whole known as organization. The creation of an organization is management’s core task. The fact that people congregate everyday to work in a particular business doesn’t necessarily make it an organization.
Management through the creation of an organization is the binding force that unites all the resources of a business; human, financial, material etc. together towards the achievement of a corporate end. To make a business into an organization is what management stands for. This is the essence of the unusual entrepreneur’s competence as a manager.
Result is the unusual entrepreneur’s ability to stimulate progress in the organization by creating an environment where change can thrive. He/she must inspire the whole organization to keep asking and answering this critical question; “what is our business and how well are we doing?”
Asking this question draws the entire organization back to the fundamental purpose of a business enterprise; to create customers by offering innovative products/services that meets their needs and solves their problems better. Making the organization capable of creating consistent change through innovation is the result the unusual entrepreneur must pursue. How is he/she able to achieve this? What are the tools for creating change?
Creation is the essence of entrepreneurship. The unusual entrepreneur is nothing without creation. He/she must be involved in a never ending process of creation by forming a creative habit. It is only through the habit of creating that the entrepreneur masters the art of creation.
I wouldn’t dwell much on this because there’s an unusual article that covers this subject of creativity, you can read it here –harnessing creativity for business success.
Creativity is about the unusual entrepreneur’s ability to see opportunities and generate ideas; risk is about the willingness to explore and exploit them. It’s one thing to be able to imagine innovation; it’s another thing to actually deliver it. The difference is risk.
Risk is the entrepreneur’s willingness to consistently invest time, effort and resources in the pursuit of change [ideas and opportunities]. Besides seeing opportunities, the entrepreneur must be willing to accept a high level of personal, professional or financial risk to pursue them.
Risk is the sacrifice the entrepreneur is prepared to pay in order to create change. The entrepreneur must never be afraid of sacrificing immediate gains for the pursuit of better ways of doing things and satisfying the customer.
Risk is the entrepreneur’s willingness to step out of his/her comfort zone in pursuit of change even though the outcome is not certain and unknown. It refers to the willingness of the entrepreneur to experiment with the idea generated and opportunity discovered. The entrepreneur must be willing to confront every uncertainty, fear and doubt and commit all that he/she is and has in pursuit of ideas and opportunities.
Over to you
Which of these qualities do you currently posses and which are you working on presently?
How have any of these qualities helped your entrepreneurial development?
What other defining qualities do unusual entrepreneurs possess besides those mentioned in the article?