What is an Entrepreneur?
” a person who sets up a business or businesses, taking on financial risks in the hope of a profit”
Suggested synonyms, among others, are ‘business man’ or business woman'”
New to working online?
Suddenly – you will find that you are surrounded by a disproportionate number of people who call themselves entrepreneurs. It is a label that is commonly used in our industry and you will be assured that this is now your new title, job description, career, calling – whatever you like.
As a newcomer to working online, possibly you have never considered the label ‘entrepreneur’ as being applicable to you. Under normal circumstances, outside of business, we keep that title for the Richard Bransons and the Bill Gates of this world. It implies high flyers, and Dragons’ Dens, certainly not a title merited by someone who is just starting out.
Consider too that previous generations, in certain areas, often used the label ‘entrepreneur’ in a derogatory way, describing anyone considered less than up-standing in business and without a solid work ethic.
‘He fancies himself as a bit of an entrepreneur. Flits about from job to job – never seems to get anywhere’.
I always think of enterprising gentlemen from centuries past who were hell-bent on building rail-roads in the vast jungles of South America. They invariably came to a sticky end – at least in legend. Indeed, when my Grandfather died, we found a bundle of stock certificates for one of those entrepreneurial ventures. Needless to say…
Maybe this is why the ‘job description’ was often prefaced with the word ‘successful’. ‘Oh – he’s a successful Entrepreneur’, as though it is necessary to make the point that he is quite stable really. He is even possibly clever, (if ever-so-slightly shady) and does know what he is doing.
How times have changed!
Since the eighties, use of the word ‘Entrepreneur’ to describe a certain type of business man or woman, has increased dramatically. The work of entrepreneurs and the methods they use are considered vital to the development and expansion of the global economy.Writers use the term in business publications, in newspapers, and on social media platforms, both on and off-line. They are describing a certain type of individual – one that has a distinct kind of personality combined with specific character traits and work habits.
Take a look at this alternate definition of an Entrepreneur from Dan Martin, the former editor of BusinessZone.co.uk
“An entrepreneur sees an opportunity which others do not fully recognize, to meet an unsatisfied demand or to radically improve the performance of an existing business.
They have unquenchable self-belief that this opportunity can be made real through hard work, commitment and the adaptability to learn the lessons of the market along the way.
“They are not diverted or discouraged by scepticism from ‘experts’ or from those from whom they seek backing and support, but willing to weigh all advice and select that which will be helpful.
They are prepared not just to work seriously hard but to back their judgment with personal investment at a level which will cause problems if they are wrong about the opportunity.
They understand that achievements are the result of team work and know how to choose the necessary blend of talents and inspire them with their vision.”
MassChallenge Blog has this to say:
Entrepreneurs have the potential to create an inspired and creative society, where everyone recognizes that they can define their future, and is empowered to maximize impact. We seek to catalyze a startup renaissance to power a society driven by entrepreneurial activities. We believe strongly in the entrepreneur and are dedicated to helping them win!
That’s a bit more exciting and challenging than the Google Version, don’t you think?
This is more than just a J.O.B.. This is a way of life – a mission, a vocation, almost. Or is that too strong a word? What do you think?
Whether or not you recognize the concept of entrepreneurship, do you feel that applying it to yourself feels a bit fake? Perhaps – an exercise in self-aggrandisement?
Maybe it’s a generational thing, too. If you are a bit older, you may feel a little more reticent about the whole thing. Especially if you are still getting off the ground. It’s all a bit embarrassing for some of us to be told that this is our new job description when actually we know diddly-squat about it. I mean – are you a cardiologist your first week in med school?
It is easier, when you are new and someone asks, ’What you do?’ to avoid saying airily, ‘Oh – I’m an Entrepreneur’. Instead you mumble something about ‘working online’, ‘having a small business’, ‘playing around on the internet – it’s just a hobby, really’.
You see – I firmly believe that to use the term ‘entrepreneur’ to describe yourself on your first day, means this. Prepare to extend yourself beyond anything you have ever done before.
You need to understand that your level of commitment has to be greater than you have ever experienced. Realise that your dedication to your work must be complete.
Above all, you must nurture a strong belief that you will succeed. You must have faith in yourself. In a nut-shell – must have the correct MIND-SET.
You must learn to say THE word with conviction and belief. This is what you want to be. This is what you ARE.
I AM AN ENTREPRENEUR.
If you find it tricky at first as many do, you could always use the term Apprentice!
Yes! You are an Apprentice Entrepreneur – and good luck with that!