Are you good enough to be an entrepreneur ?

Topic started by S. Subramanian (@ on Tue Feb 26 07:36:51 .
All times in EST +10:30 for IST.


These 8 letters mean quite differently to different people. The perceptions are far too many to provide an exhaustive listing.

To some it means a great sense of insecurity, while to others it means embracing stress and partnering with tensions. While the preacher of contentment ridicules this mad pursuit, the epitome of ambition ridicules his sense of no purpose. To some, it is an answer to their desperation, to some it is a continuation of tradition. To the dreamer it is his short cut to success, riches and fame, while to the other it is all for name. To most, it means money, and for quite a few it is to promote as many. The opportunist waits for his time, the adventurist says ‘anytime’. The wise men say ‘Beware’, the youthful enthusiasm retorts – ‘I should be there’. To the unsure ones, it is pretty dangerous, to the proclaimer of talent, it is but obvious.

In-exhaustive that it may seem though, it is still easy to classify the different people there are. One - people who take the plunge and Two - people who never will’.

To understand why people would want to fit into any of these categories, would mean understanding their psychology - their social, economic and environmental influences, which would be the delight of a sociologist or an anthropologist than that of an entrepreneur. It would however be significant to look into another classification of those who take the plunge: the successful entrepreneur, the hoping-to-be-successful entrepreneur, the entrepreneur at cross roads, and the unsuccessful entrepreneur.

To understand what it takes to be successful here, it is first important to understand what BUSINESS means to different people. These different perspectives tell us, what it meant to the unsuccessful entrepreneur and what it means to the successful one. With all these different perspectives in place, the new kid on the block should understand what it should mean to him/her, in his/her effort to be successful. While the term SUCCESS is very much relative the objectives of all entrepreneurs is quite absolute. It is to have an absolute piece of the relative cake.

For a thorough inspection into what it takes to be successful here, it is prudent to see why people fail. To base plans on ideas, to implement ideas with hope, and to then convert these hopes into reality, is what a great majority of the business community pursues. Ironical it may seem though that success is tried to attain with such means that defy any kind of logic. The average businessman claims that he will still be there, and talks with aggression that his instincts and gut feeling, his self-proclaimed ability to outwit and outthink others, the glib talker that he is, would certainly take him there. But at the same time, the feeble voice within says – ‘will I be there?’

Yes. He sure does say. It’s only a matter of time. Yes, it is indeed, ‘it is only a matter of time’, for companies to take the plunge to never be on track again. This growing malady, is the bane of the business community, with so many in the race, and hope as their only solace.

Little do people realize that their pursuit of business is more based on attitude and not on aptitude. The simple truth is – ‘there is a big psychological factor that guides a successful business man’.

Let us understand what is meant by ‘aptitude for business’. In simplest terms, it means the immediate ‘yes’ of the most successful entrepreneurs to the question – ‘do you have it in you?’ There are no two ways of measuring this aptitude. This inherent talent is the catalyst that drives an entrepreneur to reach his goal of success. This inherent talent is the same although, it is exhibited in different forms by different people. It is what makes an artist an artist, an orator an orator, a designer a designer, a programmer a programmer, a teacher a teacher, and an entrepreneur an entrepreneur. While the purist would agree with the argument of aptitude being inherent, the disbeliever would claim that, talent can be acquired with experience, but with the right attitude. However, all would agree that this is the most compelling trait of any successful personality. While it is true that a genius has a greater probability of success, it is also true that one is not born everyday. Neither do all geniuses go up the ladder. Nor are all the successful entrepreneurs, geniuses. Critical that we were of attitude when we started the discussion, it is vital to realize is importance. We talk here of not just raw attitude, but about an attitude that is supportive of aptitude – both inherent and acquired. A right blend of these, was what gave the world an Einstein, an Edison, a Newton, a Bill Gates, a Gandhi, a Da Vinci, a Beethoven, a Jordan, or the Don Bradman.

So what does it take to be successful here?

The first and foremost thing of course would be the reason behind taking the plunge - the right decision. It is ideal to view the reason and the resulting action from the perspective of the ‘right decision’, as the action alone would make no sense without the actual reason. The influencing factors greatly define the vision of the entrepreneur and his sense of foresight. The feasibility of the action would of course not be analyzed from the so-called entrepreneurial gut-feeling, but from the thoughtfulness of entrepreneur due to thorough introspection. The best way to start something would be to start it best.

While there are two schools of thought about the taking the plunge – ‘opportunities make a man’ or ‘man makes his opportunities’ - regardless, the question to be asked is ‘am I ready as yet?’ The perils of taking the plunge, are but obvious, and does not need a genius to understand them. The answer to these could be - ‘there is no sense of insecurity in me’, ‘I love taking the stress’, ’I have a great sense of purpose and am ambitious’, ‘I believe that I make the riches and fame this way’, ‘I have nothing else to do’, ‘I have tried everything else, but they failed’, ‘I have the money’, ‘I know the people and my contacts will pay’, ‘I want the name’, ‘I will make good money’, ‘I like diversifying’, ‘I love doing a lot of things and that’s me’, ‘Everybody else is into this, I will not be left out’, ‘I got the talent in abundance’, ‘this way I can help many’, ‘this is the in thing’, ‘I am following the tradition’, ‘I believe I will excel in anything’, ‘I am technically good, so logically, I should succeed’, ‘I work very hard’, ‘I really don’t know’, ‘I am always lucky’, ‘I believe in God’ – and the list goes on.

Do these reasons seem familiar? They may to lot of the new entrepreneurs. But what needs to be the actual reason behind the ‘right decision’ could be quite different. It is very much easy to go by the successful entrepreneurs as examples and hope that we would be the next shining one. It is easier still to discard the unsuccessful entrepreneur, as ‘he was simply not up to the mark’, or even worse, ‘I am far better than him’. Treat him as an exception.

The staggering truth is that these examples are the exceptions and these so-called exceptions are the typical examples we need to look at.

So just in case you plan to get into having a business of your own...


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