The word entrepreneur is so regularly used to imply a business-person. Indeed it is simply a person who turns an idea into profitable income. Being an entrepreneur requires sound thought processing; positive thinking is critical because there are so many challenges ahead of him.
He must exercise many virtues, including self confidence, focus, fearlessness, and consistency. His plans must be accompanied by a reasonable level of ambition; this is the driver and motivator of his goals.
He must want to achieve something!
Let's see some secrets of a successful entrepreneur.
Attitude. You cannot afford to engage your business with a bad attitude. You must be mannered and cultured to sustain your business, and indeed all relationships. Degrees, qualifications, or wealth cannot work for you in this instance.
Entrepreneurs must be Responsible. Learn to acknowledge when they are wrong, and make corrections without taking offense when mistakes are pointed out to them. They should be able to completely bear the consequences of their actions, without passing the buck. They should also be the first to identify and accept the company’s flaws or weaknesses, while enhancing the company’s strengths.
Take responsibility (on behalf of the actions taken by your staff or team, when necessary), and don't make excuses.
You should be Principled. A good entrepreneur should be known to have integrity. Your word is your bond, and what you say is what you mean. Do not run around compromising your position and beliefs. When you believe in something, stand firmly by it. Loyalty is a true test of how principled a man is. It only takes a short while for people that are successful through bad means, to hit the rocks, and they surely do. What you sow is absolutely what you reap.
Be Open and available to counsel and advice. You must be receptive to new ideas and others ways of doing things. You must be approachable. Sycophancy from 'loyal' staff, relatives, and friends must not be encouraged in your business; they mostly cut you off from reality.
A good entrepreneur should be in touch with the immediate environment in which he operates. He needs to meet people, get feedback from his products, and listen for new ideas.
You can't be too busy to be in touch with your customers. Be on the frontline occasionally, answer telephone enquiries, and read the mails - you will be directly in touch with the truth, and the outcome of your labor, and of course, first hand feedback. This helps you to be prepared for increased demand and to spot problems early.
The good entrepreneur should talk less and listen more. His opinion must not always top the chart; this only leads to loneliness, because people stop trying to get messages across. ‘He is Mr. Too-know’ always on top of everything; he never needs advice.
He should form associations and attend events that enable him meet and interact with other entrepreneurs and professionals. The intention here is to network, brainstorm, share experiences, and ideas.
As much as entrepreneurs should be open and receptive, they should also give; share their knowledge, experience – tutor and mentor others, especially the youth.
Knowledge and information should not be hoarded. The more knowledgeable and successful people in a country, the better for the economy.
Good entrepreneurs are also truthful about the position of their businesses, especially with their staff members. They are open about the financial strength, weaknesses, challenges, and threats. They also express to each staff, their assessment of the staff’s work in a professional manner.
Passion is the strongest driver of an entrepreneur, because it is the only factor that sustains a person through thick and thin. Your entrepreneurial passion is often adapted by your team members, which in turn assists them take the company to your dream place. It does not allow you to give up either; it fuels you to keep moving, even in the face of diverse adversity.
“You can’t be passionate without loving” – Dayo Olutayo
You must love what you do to be passionate about it. It is the intense love that brings about passion, and passion is attractive, it attracts your customers too! Passion then seeks perfection and excellence. You strive to produce and present your product in compliance with global standards. You ‘inch’ your way forward always. When your team knows how passion and excellence driven you are, they will comply. Although, most may not be able to cope with working with you, you will find people of like minds. It is common that employees especially complain about their ‘perfect’ bosses, saying things like, “nothing I do satisfies him”, but this usually applies to lazy, un-trainable people. Let them go! Everyone is not called to serve, or work with you. Let them go when they have to!
Versatility & Flexibility are important attributes of a good entrepreneur; he should be ahead of his ‘game’. There must be alternative plans all the time. There are several factors that affect the plans and programs we make, but the ability to react positively in the event of hiccups is want keeps your head above water. Believe in plan A, have confidence in it, but be prepared with a clever plan B, and C. When you practice this long enough, you will almost not panic about anything. You will so naturally carry your team to the next plan. A confident, brave, and composed leader would keep up the team spirit through challenges. Some of these challenges may be opportunities for change to a better, greater level. Embrace it!
Never give up. Resilience is important when you dwell in a region like ours; where de-motivators are a constant, and basic necessities of life are not in place. Many people give up just at the verge of breakthrough. Most businesses fail between three-four years from start date; however, businesses that have endured beyond then, usually succeed.
Ref: Entrepreneur – Steve Parks
Toyin W. Oke
Publisher, The Street Hawker
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