Being an entrepreneur isn’t for the faint of heart. While it’s true that there’s some luck involved, not only do you need a big idea, you also have to have the courage and tenacity to see it through. As a result, this means putting in long days for little to show for it.
It’s because of the entrepreneur stereotype you can assume that entrepreneurs seem to be naturally more productive. And, because of the following ten traits that they possess, that assessment seems spot on.
Running your own business drives happiness and motivation. In turn, this boosts productivity? While not exactly surprising, why is this the case?
It boils down to autonomy.
“Basically, autonomy is having a job where you at least have some control over your job,” explains Deanna Ritchie in a previous Calendar article.
“While more businesses are starting to offer this type of independence, running your own business achieves independence, adds Deanna. “You’re determining when and where you work, as well as are the final decision maker, and this helps.”
“Autonomy, however, is more than just being the head honcho,” she states. There has been evidence that independence leads to higher levels of job satisfaction and engagement.
In addition to lowering negative emotions, controlling your circumstances and your career has health benefits, such as reducing heart disease.
But don’t just take Deanna’s word on this. According to a survey from Cox Business, independence, satisfaction, and flexibility are the top reasons people want to become their own boss.
Regardless of what you call it, creativity is the key aspect of entrepreneurial success. Just ask Simon Sinek, who insists that entrepreneurs are problem solvers at heart. Or, Tina Seelig, a professor at Stanford University, promotes teaching creative problem-solving to business students.
Additionally, Entrepreneur’s Leadership Network member John Boitnott has creative thinking at the top of his list of entrepreneurial qualities. Using creativity to make valuable connections, he believes, will improve your creativity and productivity.
“Don’t get distracted. Never tell yourself that you need to be the biggest brand in the whole world. Start by working on what you need at the present moment and then what you need to do tomorrow. So, set yourself manageable targets.” — Jas Bagniewski, Co-Founder of Eve Sleep
Let’s be honest, distractions are inevitable. But, entrepreneurs have the ability not to get sidetracked by tasks that could be delegated or obsess over what can’t be controlled. Instead, possessing this superpower allows them to laser-focus on what truly matters.
“To be successful, an entrepreneur has to make difficult decisions and stand by them,” Kelsey Miller writes for Harvard Business School Online. “As a leader, they’re responsible for guiding the trajectory of their business, including every aspect from funding and strategy to resource allocation.”
“Being decisive doesn’t always mean having all the answers,” adds Miller. It takes confidence to take on challenging decisions and see them through if you want to be an entrepreneur. The decision to take corrective action is equally important if the outcome is less than favorable.
5. Harder, better, faster, stronger.
Entrepreneurs are well aware that they need to take care of themselves if they want to be their best. I mean, if you stay up all night partying and stop by McDonald’s on the way to work, how productive are you going to be? As such, successful entrepreneurs know that they need to get enough sleep, exercise, and eat a balanced diet.
They also make time to address their mental health. And, entrepreneurs also are constantly learning new skills or information to become more well-rounded.
6. Challenging the status quo.
“When an entrepreneur becomes successful, they don’t stop there,” writes Micheal Gilmore over at MoneyMiniBlog. “For them, taking the path of least minimum resistance is never the right option.”
“Entrepreneurs are progressive,” he adds. When they observe a situation, they consider how they can improve it. As a result, they constantly step outside of their comfort zone and challenge the way things have been done — which can help improve their output.
Regular meditation can help meditators stay focused and on task without getting distracted for longer periods of time. Having discovered the benefits of meditation, Vishen Lakhiani founded Mindvalley. Most days, he meditates between 10 and 30 minutes per day. Additionally, he teaches his methodology through Mindvalley’s meditation quests.
“We looked at the science of meditation, and we created six unique exercises that are stacked together that create the most transformative impact on your mind and your body and your soul in 20 to 25 minutes a day,” he says.
8. It’s not all about work.
Elon Musk once infamously said it’s impossible to achieve great things without hard work. “There are way easier places to work, but nobody ever changed the world on 40 hours a week,” he said concerning his companies Tesla and SpaceX.
Sure. Entrepreneurs are all about rolling up their sleeves and busting their tails; they also know they need time off. “The right measure is not how many hours you chip in,” entrepreneur and CEO of Fishbrain Johan Attby told Forbes. You need sleep; you need food, and you need a healthy relationship if you have a family and friends.”
Moreover, entrepreneurs have pursuits outside of their work. Whether it’s writing, martial arts, yoga, video games, or playing a musical instrument, hobbies keep entrepreneurs in peak condition.
9. Focus on strengths and supplement weaknesses.
A successful entrepreneur focuses on what they do best while outsourcing everything else. Some calculate their rate per hour so they can avoid activities below that level. By doing so, they achieve meaningful results. Moreover, they recognize that developing popular software or starting a business differs significantly from being an effective leader and will also develop those skills.
Also, they realize that they don’t need to have all the answers. So instead, entrepreneurs surround themselves with people who can supplement their weaknesses.
Passion should be the index card of every entrepreneur, as necessity is to the inventor. You cannot envision solving a problem or selling your idea to investors if you don’t believe in what you’re doing. Moreover, passion helps maintain focus and motivation — even after startup failure.
According to a psychological study of entrepreneurial behavior within organizations, passion isn’t just another personality characteristic. For those who are passionate, everything else flows. Individuals are no different. After all, creativity, tenacity, and salesmanship are all driven by passion.
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