Do you desire to become a successful entrepreneur? Then, let these principles of entrepreneurship guide you in actualizing your goals.
It’s one thing to be a business owner.
Also, it’s a different thing to be a successful business owner.
Then, it’s a whole different ball game to be a successful entrepreneur.
Do you often wonder how the likes of Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos, Oprah Winfrey, Sheryl Sandberg, Sara Blakely, Mark Zuckerberg, Larry Paige, Jack Ma, Robert Kiyosaki, and others did differently?
Has any of these names inspired your entrepreneurship journey?
These are certainly excellent entrepreneurs who have left their names on the sands of time.
However, they didn’t achieve success by simply wishing for it; they worked hard to achieve their goals.
While there may be no clear-cut formula for entrepreneurial success, there are certain principles for success that can guide you and make sure you’re on the right path.
We’ll reveal these principles shortly.
But first, you need to understand what entrepreneurship truly means.
What It Means To Be An Entrepreneur
An entrepreneur organizes, manages, and bears the risks of a business or enterprise as defined by Meriam Webster.
However, an entrepreneur is much more than that.
An entrepreneur is someone who;
- Identifies a business opportunity and sets it up.
- Creates a business goal, identifies the right resources to achieve that goal and pulls in the effort to actualize his/her goals.
- Is passionate about solving problems.
- Creates new paths and sets the pace for others to follow.
More importantly, an entrepreneur is not a business owner.
Often people perceive the two terms to mean the same thing or synonyms.
A business owner is someone who sets up a business entity to offer products/services to a defined market and make a profit.
On the other hand, an entrepreneur is someone who starts, organizes, and manages a business entity to offer solutions and make a profit.
The key difference between these two is that an entrepreneur births his/her idea.
In contrast, a business owner could just pick up any random profitable idea and set up a business.
Furthermore, entrepreneurship is the act of taking a financial risk to set up, organize, and manage a business to make a profit.
Overall, if you want to be an entrepreneur, you need to be great at brainstorming and coming up with unique ideas.
Speaking of being an entrepreneur, there are also different types of entrepreneurs based on their skills/interests and personalities.
Types Of Entrepreneurs; Principles Of Entrepreneurship
The different types include;
The Builder Entrepreneur
Ever heard the term serial entrepreneurs?
They belong to this category of entrepreneurs.
Entrepreneurs in this category are focused on building a business, scaling it, and moving on to the next big idea.
They’re known for establishing several businesses.
Precisely, they’re constantly breaking into diverse industries and exploring the business potential there.
A builder entrepreneur focuses on building a business, nurturing it, scaling it, and selling it off to interested buyers.
Overall, there are concerned with the fast growth of the business.
Hence they seek out the best team and investors that can help them achieve their goals.
These types of entrepreneurs are what you’ll call the scientists of the business world.
Their passion drives them to provide new solutions to problems and make an impact, not necessarily making profits.
In a nutshell, they aim to do things nobody else has done, even if their idea doesn’t sound logical at first.
Overall, they may not be the best at managing a business.
Nonetheless, they’re great at coming up with life-changing ideas and solutions to problems.
These are skilled professionals, e.g., doctors, lawyers, accountants, engineers, programmers, etc.
These types of entrepreneurs focus on providing solutions to problems with their skills.
More so, success for them is based on how they’re able to scale their personal income from their skills.
Overall, these are professionals, or service-providers turned entrepreneurs.
They dislike being constrained by how much income they can make from their skills.
Hence, they break out and turn their skills into a business to increase their income potential.
This is another type of entrepreneur we’ll consider in our discussion of the vital principles of entrepreneurship.
As the name implies, these types of entrepreneurs are good at spotting business opportunities in diverse situations and jumping in on them before anyone else.
They’re always seeking the next money-making opportunity and diversifying their business efforts to tap into those opportunities.
A perfect example of this type of entrepreneur is Jeff Bezos, who took advantage of the internet to build one of the largest online stores globally.
He’s also diversified what started as an online book store into a mega online store catering to several needs of his customers, such as tech gadgets, electronics, entertainment, fitness, etc.
In a nutshell, opportunist entrepreneurs have a unique ability to spot potentially profitable opportunities early on and make the most out of them.
Those are the four main types of entrepreneurs.
What type of entrepreneur are you or would you like to be?
It’s best to be clear on this before venturing into entrepreneurship.
Just as there are different types of entrepreneurs, they’re also different types of entrepreneurship.
Types Of Entrepreneurship
Small Business Entrepreneurship
This is the most common form of entrepreneurship.
It’s also one of the easiest to start and manage.
This type of entrepreneurship involves setting up a small business such as a cafe, restaurant, retail store, liquor store, bakery, etc., without the future prospect of expanding into a global franchise.
Small business entrepreneurs can easily set up their business out of their personal finances and may take a loan if the business requires it.
However, they do not collaborate with investors to set up their business.
Overall, they individually set up their business with their personal finances and live off the profits of the business.
This type of entrepreneurship involves starting with a simple, unique idea and scaling it up into something mega and renowned brand.
Many tech companies begin this way.
An individual or a group of individuals with a unique idea that solves a global problem would set up the business on a small scale and expand the business within a few years.
Furthermore, most start-up companies begin operations remotely from home or a small rented space.
Above all, it relies heavily on social media promotions to gain awareness/break into the market and get investors to finance the idea.
This type of entrepreneurship involves setting up foundations or enterprises that solve community-based problems.
Entrepreneurs practicing this type of entrepreneurship may not necessarily be driven by profits.
Rather than that, their major goal is to create products and/or offer services that solve a pressing community problem and cause a positive change.
Examples of this type of entrepreneurship include; Human rights foundations, Women empowerment foundations, etc.
Entrepreneurs who practice this type of entrepreneurship have the option to focus on;
- Community Needs; creating job opportunities in the society, offering financial solutions/loans for a marginalized group, etc.
- Humanitarian Activities; Here, entrepreneurs do not necessarily seek profit.
Instead, they focus solely on meeting societal needs.
They’re able to keep the organization running from personal fundings and contributors/sponsors.
- Transforming the society by meeting societal needs that the government and other existing businesses have neglected.
- Meeting a social need on a global level.
This type of entrepreneurship involves starting with a big company and evolving into a large company with several branches or franchises.
Expanding the company may result from the CEO/Team member identifying an untapped market or the need to get involved in new trending technology.
Now, you’re well aware of what entrepreneurship entails and the different types.
So, you should be clear on what type of entrepreneur you want to be and the type of entrepreneurship you want to practice.
Let’s consider the key principles of entrepreneurship.
Principles Of Entrepreneurship; How To Become An Entrepreneur
These are the principles to live by to become a successful entrepreneur.
1. Be Solutions-Oriented
While several people see the problems in most situations, entrepreneurs focus on solutions.
This mindset sets them apart from regular business owners.
Not only are they solution-oriented, but they’re also passionate about it.
This passion is what drives them to seek solutions to societal/global problems regardless of how challenging they may be or the hurdles they encounter along the way.
You can become more solutions-oriented by;
- Ask leading questions that can push you to seek out answers
- Be willing to collaborate and find solutions to problems
2. Be Visionary; Principles Of Entrepreneurship
Entrepreneurs start a business with a big picture in mind.
Sometimes, it isn’t just about the monetary gains but a much higher purpose of making an impact, building generational wealth, or solving a global problem.
As such they start their business with high hopes and a clear sense of the future they’re trying to achieve.
This helps them persevere through tough times and stay focused until they achieve their goals.
So, it’s not enough to say you want to start a business and become an entrepreneur just because you want to make money.
You need to have a bigger picture of the future to focus on.
To become a visionary, you need to;
- Have big and bold dreams
- Aspire for greatness
3. Be Willing To Take Carefully Calculated Risks
If you’re looking to avoid taking risks, then you may want to consider your desire to become an entrepreneur.
This is because entrepreneurship involves several risks.
Investing money in a viable business idea that may not profit as much as projected or at all is a huge financial risk.
However, entrepreneurs don’t take risks blindly.
Instead, they take risks after thorough evaluation and planning as well as preparation for the worst-case scenarios.
This way, they can maximize opportunities and make profits in their business.
You can learn to take more calculated risks by;
- First, reframe your mindset about failure; see it as a learning process
- Thoroughly assess the situation and weigh the risks involved
- Have a clear picture of the potential outcome of the risks involved and have a contingency plan for the worst-case scenario.
- Think of how you’ll feel should you miss out on the opportunity.
4. Learn To Prioritize And Focus On Priorities
Successful entrepreneurs also understand the importance of prioritizing.
Hence, they endeavor to set their priorities straight and focus more on activities that will have the most impact on their business goals.
More so, they allow the market trends and opportunities to shape their priorities in business while staying true to their overall business goals.
This way, they can maximize their efforts and reach major milestones in business.
You can learn to prioritize better by;
- focusing on the most important stuff
- minimizing distraction
- Taking tasks one at a time
5. Practice Accountability
As we established earlier, entrepreneurs create, organize, and manage a business.
This means that even if they’ve delegated responsibilities to their employees, they’re indirectly responsible for the entire business.
Successful entrepreneurs understand this.
This is why they keep up and are privy to the information of everything that goes on in their company.
Also, no major or minor decision is executed without their consent.
This way, they can effectively manage their business and have enough information to make smart decisions for the business.
To become more accountable as a leader;
- First, you’ll need to become more organized, serious-minded, and committed
- Also, you’ll need to have a clear understanding of your responsibility as a leader
- Understand everyone’s role
- Practice effective communication
- Ask questions
6. Focus On Adding Value
Most thriving entrepreneurs have proven to be people who genuinely care about offering products/services that meet their target market needs.
Although, they’re in business to make money.
However, value comes first before the money.
This way, they’re able to meet their target audience’s specific needs, stand apart from the competition, and eventually make more money in business.
To become such an entrepreneur, you need to;
- Be genuinely concerned about your target market pain points
- Think from a customer perspective
- Offer high-quality and unique product/services
- Value customer feedback
7. Have A Growth Mindset
This is another key principle for successful entrepreneurship.
Most successful entrepreneurs are not individuals with a fixed mindset.
Instead, they believe that their skills/talents and others around them can be improved through constant learning and practice.
Hence, they’re not limited by their inabilities or failures.
Instead, they’re willing to push themselves beyond their normal abilities and face challenges.
This sets them apart from normal achievers.
So, you need to keep an open mind to develop a growth mindset and be willing to step out of your comfort zone.
8. Practice Confidence & Self-Belief
Successful entrepreneurs also have healthy confidence and belief in themselves.
Most of them believed in themselves when no one else would.
In entrepreneurship, not everyone will believe in your ideas or your ability to see them through.
However, you need to recognize your abilities and belief in them to help you get started on your journey.
Your abilities may not be enough to get you to your desired destination.
However, you can always get started and improve yourself as you go instead of allowing self-limiting beliefs to deprive you of your chance at success.
To improve your self-confidence;
- Practice self-kindness
- Increase self-awareness (knowledge of your skills and abilities)
- Be assertive
- Surround yourself with positive people.
9. Always Maximize Your Strengths; Principles Of Entrepreneurship
No individual is equally good at everything.
We all have our strengths and weakness.
However, successful entrepreneurs are smart enough to maximize their strengths and delegate to other people to make up for their weak spots.
With the combined strength of everyone on the team, they can actualize their goals faster and efficiently.
So, this is something you must learn to do as an entrepreneur.
- Identify and maximize your strengths.
- Be willing to collaborate with others whose strengths are your weakness.
- Be willing to delegate responsibilities.
10. Build Resilience
This is a non-negotiable factor in successful entrepreneurship.
Most successful entrepreneurs didn’t have it in the beginning.
Instead, their passion for success and grit kept them going.
So, in your journey to entrepreneurship, you’ll need resilience.
Resilience is the ability to bounce back from failure without loss of momentum.
It’s being able to rise from the hurt of failure and achieve your goals regardless of how many times you fail at it.
To become more resilient;
- Maintain a positive outlook on failure and adversity
- Learn from your mistakes
- Be kind to yourself
- Be hopeful
11. Study Your Customers; Principles Of Entrepreneurship
What’s a business without its customers.
The more customers patronize your business, the more profits you’ll make
This is why this is also an important principle in entrepreneurship.
Most successful businesses have a deep understanding of their customer base, needs and how best to meet those needs.
There’s a lot your customers can teach you about your business.
So, you should look to them for more insight by;
- Researching your market
- Watch out for keywords/terms your customers use to describe your products and services.
- Gather feedback by sending out surveys
- Look into online forums and social media platforms that your target audience visits.
12. Build A Great Team
Behind every successful business is a team of motivated, committed, and efficient individuals working hard to achieve the business goals.
So, as you begin your entrepreneurship journey, you’ll want to make sure you bring the right team on board.
Specifically, you’ll want to build a team of individuals;
- Whose goals align with your business goals.
- Also, who have the valuable skills you need in your business.
- Who are self-motivated and efficient.
13. Be Respectful
Finally, another key principle for successful entrepreneurship is to be respectful.
This means having self-respect and respecting your customers, employees, and business partners.
Respect is a crucial factor in building business relationships.
Firstly, self-respect will help you build a positive self-image.
Likewise, respect for your customers will help you treat your customers right, which will increase customer loyalty.
Respect for your employees will improve employee satisfaction and productivity.
More importantly, respect for partners/investors will preserve the business relationship.
You can become more respectful by;
- Practicing kindness.
- Treating others as you’ll want to be treated.
- Controlling your emotions.
- Behaving appropriately.
Final Thoughts On The Principles Of Entrepreneurship
To conclude, entrepreneurship offers serval benefits such as; a flexible/independent lifestyle, the opportunity to improve your skills, financial independence, better work-life balance, and more.
It also has its challenges, such as; financial risks, difficulty finding the right team, lack of capital, sales/marketing, and many more.
Nonetheless, overcoming the challenges and achieving success make entrepreneurship more rewarding.
Since you’ve decided to tread down this path, use these simple yet essential principles to make your entrepreneurship journey successful.
All the Best!