Monday, May 18, 2015

Do You Have the Entrepreneurial Spirit? Three Simple Questions to Help You Decide.

While this is not intended to be an all inclusive list, your answers to the following three questions could help you determine whether or not you have what it takes to venture out into the world on your own as a entrepreneur.

1. What do I do better than anyone I know does?

The answer to this question should come almost immediately to mind. The key, however, is to be honest with yourself. Do not answer the question with what you aspire to do better or plan someday to do better than others. What is it that right now, at whatever stage of life you are in, sets you apart from your peers?

Some would argue that the first question you should ask is “what do I do that I love?” but there are many things a person might love to do that they are not necessarily good at and that no amount of training will remedy. (The opposite is also true: you can successfully train yourself to do something you hate, but that is an even more fatal career decision).

If you do something better than anyone you know, chances are you love to do it.  If you do not do anything better than the average Joe, you might want to consider another career path, like accounting.

2. Can I positively contribute to society by doing it?

The answer to this interrogatory will depend on your political bend, and since this is not a political blog, the answer is not addressed here.

What is important, however, is that each entrepreneur’s career path decision lies within his or her personal standards of morality. Temporary success can be achieved either way, but misalignment of career choice and moral standards will lead to intellectual conflicts and eventual failure.

Kathryn Hedges, starving artist / entrepreneur, does a good job of addressing the question of societal contribution from both ends of the political spectrum here.

3. What am I trying to prove?

Why is this question important? Only entrepreneurs and politicians know the answer.

There are many paths leading to entrepreneurialism, but whether you chose it or it chose you, there is a burning desire to prove something to someone, even if it is yourself. What evidence is there to support this notion?

Consider these two real-life examples:

Jason was born into money. He could have done anything in the world he wanted. He could have spent his entire life inventing, creating, or philanthrophising without fear of failure. Instead, he was content traveling the world in self-indulgent behavior without contributing anything to society except what he considered his irresistible smile. He felt no need to prove anything to anyone, including himself.

John was born into middle class. He worked his way through college and achieved middle-class status for himself and his family.  In order to maintain that lifestyle, however, he had to spend every day trading hours for dollars, meeting ever-increasing sales quotas, and living under constant stress.

One day, after paying a repairman a ridiculous sum of his hard-earned money to fix a pipe leak on his property, he had an epiphany, and he set out to prove to himself and his family that he could provide the same standard of living while working for himself. John has been a successful independent General Contractor for the past fifteen years.

If you had nothing to prove, you might not have the desire, determination, and willingness needed to see through on your idea during the tough times, and for most of us out here in EntrepreneurialLand, there have been plenty of tough times.

No comments:

Post a Comment