If you want to succeed in business, you must learn to nurture an entrepreneurial spirit. Here are seven tips from famous entrepreneurs on how to do that.
In this article:
- Figure out What Entrepreneur Characteristics You Possess
- Adopt an Entrepreneurial Mindset on Risk
- Learn to Manage Your Financial Risks
- To Become a Successful Businessman, Ask for Help
- To Cultivate Your Entrepreneurial Spirit, Learn to Control Your Anger
- Cultivate Your Entrepreneur Ability Through Continuous Learning
- Learn the Art of Automation
Entrepreneurial Spirit: 7 Ways to Cultivate and Develop It
1. Figure Out What Entrepreneur Characteristics You Possess
According to entrepreneurship guru Gary Vaynerchuk, a.k.a. GaryVee., you either have the entrepreneur spirit, or you don’t. He says that entrepreneurs are born, not made.
Based on this, the first thing you’ll need to know to develop your entrepreneurial spirit if you have it. You can’t nurture something you don’t have.
According to Vaynerchuk, five important traits indicate if you have what it takes to succeed in business. These entrepreneurial spirit indicators are:
- A chip on the shoulder – a great hunger and strong belief or conviction that you have what it takes to succeed in business
- A strong sense of independence
- The ability to understand consumers’ needs and wants, as well the how to grab their attention
Don’t just rely on your self-assessment, which will most likely be biased in one way or another. Ask trusted friends and family members to help you figure out whether or not you have the entrepreneurial spirit in you.
2. Adopt an Entrepreneurial Mindset on Risk
Risk is the possibility that something you don’t want to happen will happen. When it comes to entrepreneurship, the primary risk people worry about is the risk of losing money on their investment.
Many people think that becoming an entrepreneur is risky and being an employee isn’t. Well, bestselling author and entrepreneur James Altucher begs to disagree.
First, according to Altucher, entrepreneurs don’t take on risks — they manage them.
Entrepreneurship naturally carries with it various risks. Technically, an entrepreneur has no choice but to deal with those risks.
Truth is, everything has risks, not just entrepreneurship. While you can’t eliminate them, you can manage them well.
Here are some examples:
- You face risks when crossing the street but manage it well by looking both ways before crossing. You also wait for the pedestrian sign to turn green before doing so.
- When you eat, you face the risk of food poisoning. However, you can minimize it by with proper food preparation and just buying food from trusted vendors.
- You face health risks when working with people who have the flu but can minimize getting sick through supplements and enough sleep.
You can’t eliminate risk, which means you don’t take them on just by becoming an entrepreneur. However, you can manage them well so your chances of success are maximized.
Second, Altucher says that staying an employee is a bigger risk compared to entrepreneurship.
He says that even as an employee of a company, one must behave like an employee if he or she wants to succeed. By this, he means never resting on one’s laurels and continuously looking for ways to grow and succeed in the company.
When you look at risk from a different perspective, you won’t look at them as threats to fear. Instead, you can learn to look at them as exciting opportunities to take advantage of.
3. Learn to Manage Your Financial Risks
While an entrepreneurial mindset on risks can help you overcome your fear of entrepreneurship, that’s not the end of it. You must learn to manage your financial risks, too, even while you’re not yet an entrepreneur.
How can you do this?
One way is to diversify — don’t put all your proverbial eggs in one financial basket. When it comes to shifting from being a full-time employee to a full-time entrepreneur, this means making a gradual transition.
Altucher recommends keeping one’s day job when trying out entrepreneurship, which what he did when he started his first business. He continued working as a full-time employee during the first 1 ½ years of his first business.
These were the benefits of this move for him:
- In case the business failed, he still had the financial safety net of his day job. By having a financial safety net through his day job, he didn’t make desperate business decisions out of fear.
- This also made him confident enough to take calculated risks to grow his first business.
Fortunately for him, his first business eventually started to make enough money that he was able to finally quit his day job. And thus, his life as a full-time entrepreneur began, which he continues to live to this day.
Another way to manage your financial risks and nurture an entrepreneurial spirit is saving enough money for your financial buffer. Bestselling author and renowned business and financial expert Ramit Sethi points to the volatile nature of entrepreneurial cash flows.
He points out the fact that many businesses don’t make tons of money every month. For startups, specifically, some months can be cashflow deserts.
4. To Become a Successful Businessman, Ask for Help
One of the biggest mistakes many beginner entrepreneurs make these days is to think they can go at it alone. While it’s true that the Internet has made it possible for many solopreneurs to succeed and become rich, they needed help along the way, too.
In her bestselling book The Million-Dollar One-Person Business, Elaine Pofeldt featured several successful million-dollar solopreneurs. One key factor for these entrepreneurs’ successes is delegating work to freelancers.
The term solopreneur is misleading because they don’t run the business by themselves. They simply outsource the tedious, voluminous, and low-value work to online freelancers instead of hiring full-time employees.
Going back to delegating work, both Altucher and Sethi encourage their readers to do it.
Yes, work hard on the things that’ll bring in the most benefit to the company, like marketing or promotions, but leave the low-value, voluminous work to others.
One area of business Sethi recommends delegating to somebody else is accounting. He says that investing in a capable accounting expert – and bookkeepers if your budget can afford it – is one of the best you can make to grow your business.
However, this doesn’t mean you take a completely hands-off approach to your business’ finances. Delegating, in this case, means limiting your responsibilities to supervision and getting regular updates from the accountant.
5. To Cultivate Your Entrepreneurial Spirit, Learn to Control Your Anger
Emotional decisions put you at risk of making really stupid business decisions, with one of the strongest emotions that can wreak havoc on a business being anger. This is why Altucher highly recommends never getting angry.
While that may seem too much of a stretch, the main principle he’s trying to get across is not to let anger control your business decisions.
To avoid or control anger, Altucher raises a very important point: fear is what usually triggers anger. Thus, controlling anger is about addressing the fear behind it.
Here’s an example:
- You get stressed and angry because a supplier failed to come through on a specific date. That screw-up means you’ll fail to live up to your end of the bargain with an important customer.
- That failure runs the risk of losing an important customer, which is the fear that triggered your anger.
To help you manage this fear well, implement key risk management practices. For example, diversify your clientele so you won’t be dependent on just one or two big accounts for revenues.
If a client leaves, you won’t panic because other clients can keep your business afloat. With little or no fear, you’ll be able to avoid or manage your anger better.
6. Cultivate Your Entrepreneur Ability Through Continuous Learning
Sethi says that one’s business is closely tied to their personal net worth. For this, he recommends continuously learning new ways of doing things.
Reading books is one of Sethi’s suggestions for continuous learning.
The only permanent thing in this world is change. By learning new things regularly, you can equip yourself to navigate through changes that can impact your business.
7. Learn the Art of Automation
Sethi recommends automating certain tasks, which brings several benefits:
- When you learn to automate most of your repetitive tasks, you can free up more time. You can use this time for higher-value personal and business activities that can maximize your productivity.
- You can also ensure that repetitive things get done all the time.
This is why Sethi highly recommends learning how to automate many tasks like setting aside money every month to an investment account to prepare for retirement. Once you automate your savings account, it’ll automatically transfer money to a retirement account like a 401(k) while you focus on more important things.
An entrepreneurial spirit is crucial for succeeding in business. That’s why you should consistently work at nurturing and growing it through practices like these.
Do you have other suggestions to nurture an entrepreneurial spirit? Let us know in the comments section below!
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