Not everyone is cut out for entrepreneurship. You can be really great at what you do, and not be a good business person at all.
An example of this is a doctor who takes excellent care of their patients and has a thriving practice but ends up having their lights turned off because they forget to pay the bill–or worse, because they don’t bill their patients properly.
I have identified this list of the top personality traits that good entrepreneurs display. Chances are if you are reading this list, you have many of these traits! You likely won’t possess all of these and that’s perfectly okay. Here they are:
- Good morals. This has to be the most important one, right? If you don’t have good morals and operate with the highest integrity, then you won’t be in business long especially in this information age where it is far too easy for your customer to tell others that you messed up.
- Good work ethic. I never really knew what hard work was until I worked for myself. Gone are the 40 hour work weeks and the days when you kick back in your desk chair and surf Facebook because the boss was on vacation…oh you never did that? Me neither! When everything is on your shoulders you have to dig in and get to work every single day, especially if you have employees that you feel responsible for. But, hopefully, if you’re like me, you love every single minute of it! People ask me all the time why I want to work so hard. My response, “oh no, this is what I do for fun!”
- Loves to create. I freaking love coming up with new ideas and watching them turn into something real all because I did something. Because I made it happen. And this doesn’t just apply to the makers, service providers create things like digital products and packages.
- Loves to learn and is a skilled problem solver. I have been a small business mentor now for over 3 years. I have owned my own businesses and have studied business for almost thirty years. I know a lot of things, but when I come up against a problem that I can’t solve for myself I have two choices. Hire someone or learn how to do it myself. I love learning new ways of doing things from social media marketing to creating my own websites to learning about sales funnels. It is all fun to me. If you don’t like to learn, you might not want to be an entrepreneur, or be sure to start adding team members as soon as possible that have the skills you lack.
- Visionary. A good entrepreneur can see the vision for the future that they are creating. They can not only see it, but they can smell it and taste it too! You know what it is that you want to build and you know the WHY behind the reasons you are creating it. If you aren’t sure about your WHY, we should definitely talk!
- Good communicator. You don’t have to be a great public speaker to be a good entrepreneur (you should be willing to practice and hone those skills) but you do need to be articulate, a good listener, and a decent writer (again you can get help with this and refine your existing skills). Depending on the kind of business you pursue, this could be more or less important to you, but it is important nonetheless.
- Passionate. Does the thing that you are creating, building, and nurturing light up your soul? Good! If it doesn’t, you need to ask yourself why you are doing it? This thing, this business, will be the thing you spend more time doing than anything else in your life. You will spend more time with it than you spend with your husband, your children possibly, and all of your best friends combined. You need to love it or at the very least you need to love the purpose behind it. I volunteer at the food pantry. I don’t love packing canned goods and bags of dried peas into paper bags but I sure love the grateful smiles on the faces of the recipients of those bags! Good entrepreneurs are in love with what they are creating.
- Good with money. This one should probably be closer to the top but I put it at the bottom because it makes me uncomfortable. I haven’t always been great with money. It was something I had to learn, and frankly, an accountant will be the first thing that I hire out when I start building my team. If you can’t manage your household budget, what makes you think you can manage your business budget?
- Caring. If you don’t like people you are probably not going to be a great entrepreneur. Yes, there are certainly ways that you can build a business all by your lonesome with minimum interaction with others and if I am honest, that is one of the things, as an introvert, that I love about entrepreneurship is that I get to decide when I interact with humans and when I just stick with the dogs in my office. The point is that if you don’t care about people and care about what you create for them and care if you make them happy, then you might be in the wrong business here.
- Patient. Last, but certainly not least, and again one of those traits that are not high on the list for me personally, you MUST be patient. Success in your business will not happen overnight. All of the people you see online who are killing it in their businesses and having 5 figure months have been at it for a while, have paid their dues, and have been…wait for it…patient. In very rare cases you might find someone who just had an idea that took off and makes them a fortune overnight. This isn’t the reality for most of us. We create products, we market them, and we create good content, and we put it out, and we nurture relationships and network our behinds off, and then slowly but surely the clients start to trickle our way, or one sale leads to another to another but you need to be patient.
How many personality traits on the list can you attribute to yourself? Are there some that you don’t currently possess but that you feel are key to your success as an entrepreneur? Think about how you can work on those skills to make them a consistent part of your repertoire. If you need some help with this, pop into the FB group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/1863407670359828/ and let’s start a conversation about it. Please don’t feel like you need to have all ten of these traits in order to get started. You certainly do not and one of the great things about entrepreneurship is the way that it teaches us so many things. I am excited to be with you on that journey!