María Alcaraz

What does it take to be an entrepreneur?


Starting your own business is no easy task. If it were, everybody could be successful with their own startup. The thing is that there are a bunch of people who are capable of getting hold of their courage, jump head-first into it and look at failure right in the eye to say their idea will stand still.

Based on plenty of studies done on entrepreneurship in Spain, the rate at which the number of entrepreneurs grows is four times smaller than the rate at which this type of professional has been leaving the market since the crisis started back in 2008.

For this reason, it almost takes a hero to stand up, say you are a entrepreneur and try to foster your ideas.

What is it that makes entrepreneurs so special? What makes those that become successful different? Ironically, answers to these questions are tightly related to failure. Entrepreneurs stand out because of several features that help them avoid the rough patches in economy and become freelance professionals:

A visionary, forward-looking approach

The words entrepreneur and visionary usually go hand in hand, and this is not by chance. The smartest entrepreneurs are capable of finding holes in the market that may create a need in customers, and later on innovate and manage to provide a solution to that need, that is offered as a product or service. They are able to see beyond their immediate circumstances and make the most of what lies hidden just around the corner.

Passion for their product

The best entrepreneurs don’t wake up one morning and decide they’re going to get rich; they don’t work on an idea to reach this goal. The best, most famous entrepreneurs are those that are driven by passion, whose way towards success is paved by the love they feel towards their idea and their project. They are driven by the fact that someday they will be able to share everything they have on their minds with other people.

These are the passion and the drive that keep entrepreneurs afloat in the rough patches where no resources or money are available. When many people throw in the towel because of losses or negative results, they keep believing, they have confidence and expect to be able to turn such negative experiences into lessons for the future.

Persistence

They are aware of the fact that failure is something out there, and they will fight with all their might to avoid it. Persistence, determination, resolve... We may call it many names, but this is the pillar that keeps the best entrepreneurs strong in the worst moments.

Steve Jobs created his revolutionary idea out of the blue: something that we take for granted was simply unthinkable before him. Jobs had his future vision and was driven by his passions, and this is why he was successful. This is why those who had been in the sector for years before him ended up copying his ideas, following the trail of Apple and Next.

Tolerance and control

Not all entrepreneurs are immune to risk, but they have a better capacity to handle it. Why?

Because they are tolerant, to some extent, to the uncertain; fear of the unknown is something natural, but they don’t let this shadow prevent them from following their path. This tolerance for risk and chaos, along with a good capacity to control fear, enables the best founders to keep moving ahead and be decisive in their project’s way to success.

Trusting oneself

Trusting oneself means having confidence in your own vision. When an entrepreneur has confidence in his/her abilities and potential, the dream comes true once funds are available.

There will always be people who tell you your ideas are not worth it; there will be obstacles to be overcome and pessimism around your vision of the project. Being successful as an entrepreneur doesn’t involve being rich, having contacts or being a genious: confidence in oneself and persistence are the road travelled by all those who have confidence in their own ideas.

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