What are the most important skills an entrepreneur needs in order to succeed in their ventures? This is a great question to ask yourself, especially if you plan on being a successful entrepreneur yourself.
Let say you’ve got a great business idea and you find yourself facing a great opportunity that you want to take advantage of. It may not be difficult to build a foundation for your business and enjoy short-term success, but succeeding in the long-term means having to develop entrepreneurial skills that will allow you to take your business forward. In this article, let’s talk about the skills you need to take your business to new heights, with these 7 core skills you’ll need to become a successful entrepreneur:
First off, a bourgeoning entrepreneur must have entrepreneurial ambitions. Being ambitious is not just a characteristic, it is an ability to look into the future with the drive to be bigger and more successful than ever.
Those who are ambitious and want to succeed are willing to work for their success every step of the way. That means not wanting to back out when the going gets a little tough because ambitious entrepreneurs have a visualized goal in their minds, and every challenged overcome is a milestone along the way to success.
When you start a business or find yourself in the midst of running one, it’s important not to lose sight of your goals and the ambition that drove you in the first place.
2. Persistence and Perseverance
If you think of the most famous entrepreneurs and businesses men and women of the present day, one thing that the majority of them will have in common is that they have suffered failures, losses, and defeats in their businesses. Think of Bill Gates and Paul Allen who founded and developed Traf-O-Data—which was a business that failed. Gates and Allen used what they learned from this blunder to build Micro-Soft in 1975.
Paul Allen went on to say that Traf-O-Data was his favorite business mistake, because according to him, every failure contains the seed of our next success.
The lesson here is that as entrepreneurs, we should not take blunders and failures as killing blows to our business ambitions. Rather, we should see mistakes as the learning opportunities that they are and that we should see mistakes as opportunities to improve our operation, and persevere. Failure is when you cease to persist and persevere.
Curiosity and the willingness to constantly learn are all tied up together. If you are not keeping an eye out, doing research, and learning, then it will be difficult to succeed as an entrepreneur. Curiosity will be one of your biggest assets as an entrepreneur because it is what will lead you to new discoveries and answers that may bring you to new, and maybe even revolutionary ideas.
Just take note of this quote from someone who is historically a very successful entrepreneur, Walt Disney: “We keep moving forward, opening new doors, and doing new things because we're curious and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths”.
Being curious brings you to asking yourself some powerful questions over the course of your business. It expands your way of thinking, leading you to new perspectives that may refresh your sense of creativity, and bringing new innovations to your business.
4. Emotional Intelligence
You don’t have to have genius levels of IQ to have success in business, but if you have enough emotional intelligence to understand the inner workings of yourself and of your target customers, then emotional intelligence will serve you very well indeed as an entrepreneur.
For starters, emotional intelligence helps you tune in to yourself, helping you regulate your own emotions, preventing them from running wild, helping you make better decisions.
Emotional intelligence also helps you communicate and connect with others more effectively, whether you are trying to connect with your team or with your valued customers.
Having a higher sense of emotional intelligence will also allow you to identify your customers’ needs and what strokes their desires as consumers, allowing you to market and cater to your target audience more effectively—something that will help you in your route to building a successful and profitable business.
5. Problem Solving
As entrepreneurs, we offer products and services that solve problems and or bring ease to our customers’ lives, making problem solving an essential skill for the best of entrepreneurs. Problem solving involves critical thinking and evaluation. We evaluate situations, think of actions and their possible results, looking for the best solutions and positive outcomes for the future of your business.
Having problem solving skills is vital because it is tied together with critical thinking, taking initiative, adaptability, and perseverance. You have to have determination to overcome the problems or hurdles that will arrive over the course of your business and to see challenges as what they are—an opportunity to improve yourself and your business.
6. Courage to Take Risk
Being an entrepreneur and taking risks are inexorably linked. When you have a new business idea that you want to take out into the world, you risk failure but with the great hope of success. Almost every business decision has elements of risk embedded, but risks are what take people and businesses forward. Innovation cannot take place without a few risks here and there.
What’s important is that you differentiate risk and gamble. Risks you take in business should be calculated, meaning that you shouldn’t go into something blindly, hoping for the best results. Calculated risks on the other hand need a lot of critical thinking and an awareness of the potential results of your chosen action.
7. Stress Management
Being your own boss is the dream of many, but what some don’t understand is that working for yourself doesn’t mean you’ll get to slack off more. Those who are truly passionate at building something from the ground up have to make more sacrifices, work long hours, and become more financially and emotionally invested, leading to stress.
But stress management is absolutely essential and vital to having a long and successful stretch as an entrepreneur. You don’t want to start cracking under the pressure of running your own business, because you’ll make bad decisions based on frustrations and negative emotions that may ruin any business you’ve got going.
As entrepreneurs, it’s important to recognize the value of taking breaks, having a hobby that you enjoy like reading, exercising, or even videogames, incorporating a healthy lifestyle, and even delegating tasks to your team as your business grows.
Back to You
There you have it, we’ve given you seven essential traits hat will help you grow and become better as an entrepreneur, traits that you can nurture in order to cultivate your own business in turn. There is no cookie cutter answer to what makes a great and successful entrepreneur, but traits like ambition, perseverance, curiosity, emotional intelligence, problem solving, risk taking, and stress management are universally required by all those who endeavor to owning a business that has the ability to keep on moving forward.
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