Successful entrepreneurs come in all shapes and sizes; young and old, highly educated and high school dropouts, bootstrapped and venture-funded. There’s no one size fits all combination that you could possibly use to model the “perfect entrepreneur.”
What similarities do successful entrepreneurs have in common? What factors helped determine their level of success? Through my research & analysis, my findings show that all successful entrepreneurs share a common set of core traits & attributes.
Here are 6 core attributes every successful entrepreneurs have:
Being an entrepreneur day in & day out is NOT easy. Ask any successful entrepreneur this question. They’ll likely tell you the same thing. When you look at the individuals today who are successful in their space/industry, it’s important for you to remember that not a single one of them got to their level of success overnight.
Tim Ferriss volunteered at the Silicon Valley Association for Start-up Entrepreneurs for free. This eventually led to him becoming friends with Jack Canfield (bestselling author of “Chicken Soup for the Soul) & connecting with his literary agent.
Gary Vaynerchuk produced Wine Library TV videos for 18 months straight every day before most people even knew who he was. Gary clearly understood playing the long game.
“Success is no accident. It is hard work, perseverance, learning, studying, sacrifice and most of all, love of what you are doing or learning to do.” – Pele
In the technological age that we live in, changes are occurring at an extremely rapid pace. Over the past 5-10 years, we’ve all witnessed drastic changes in the economy. Blockbuster was a billion dollar company, but failed to adapt (they lost). Netflix & Amazon Prime have taken over the market.
The same situation is occurring in the taxi industry as well. The industry as a whole has failed to adapt & is slowly fading away. Uber & Lyft are taking over market share worldwide. As Charles Darwin said, “It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent. It is the one who is most adaptable to change.”
Although Darwin only lived during the 19th Century, he still hit the hammer on the nail perfectly in regards to the importance of adapting as an entrepreneur in the current world we live in.
I am yet to meet a successful entrepreneur who didn’t bring tremendous value to their business, organization, or cause. As best selling author Michael Ellsberg states, “you are not entitled to anything in this world, until you create value for another human being.”
By offering great value through the work you do, you’ll unconsciously attract others to your business and they’ll be inclined to be apart of what you’re doing.
When you look at the list of the top companies on the Fortune 500 today, it’s incomprehensible to think that a company so large all started because of a single idea that one person or a small group of founders had.
Every great business in the world started with an idea. An idea which someone acted on to turn it into a profitable business. As you move through your journey & entrepreneurial pursuit, you are going to meet people along the way who will criticize your idea, make fun of it, & even try to put you down in your efforts.
Whatever you do, don’t let their efforts stop you from striving for your goals. Most successful companies that are around today were once thought of as crazy ideas too. Stay focused on your vision.
Gratitude is one of the most common traits I found that great entrepreneurs held. Robert Emmons is seen as the world’s leading scientific authority on gratitude.
Emmon’s breaks down gratitude into 2 main components:
First, it’s an affirmation of goodness. We affirm that there are good things in this world, gifts and benefits we’ve received. The second part, Emmon’s writes, is that we acknowledge that other people give us gifts (business, personal, etc), to help us achieve the goodness in our lives.
Make it a point to have more gratitude in business. Not only will it make you feel more fulfilled personally, but it will also help fulfill the lives of the people you surround yourself with.
We hear the word “passion” being used in business as often as a ping pong ball gets tossed around at a college frat party. With all this broad discussion on the word, why is passion truly a key attribute that all successful entrepreneurs hold?
Because when you are passionate about what it is you’re working towards, you’re willing to put in more work every day & will stay in it for the long haul. Winning as an entrepreneur is a marathon, not a sprint.
It’s a marathon race that is run uphill into a storm, has potholes on the road that you need to avoid along the way, & other competitors are trying to throw you off the course.
“There is no passion to be found playing small – in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.” – Nelson Mandela
With that being said, you’re going to need to work obsessively hard. Waking up before everyone else, staying up later, and sometimes even losing sleep. You’ll only be able to sustain this level of intensity if your business is built on the foundation of something that you are passionate about.