It seems like some people are just born with the ability to lead. At the same time, many of those people are the first ones to tell you their success stories, detailing their times of trouble when it seemed like they couldn’t do anything right.
So, is it the chicken or the egg? Are people born with the characteristics of an entrepreneur or are they developed? We’ll explore that idea in this article, hopefully coming to a better understanding of how entrepreneurial ability is attained and what you can do to improve your own qualities.
Entrepreneurial Ability: Is It Nature or Nurture?
We view entrepreneurs as those who are innovators. They don’t take things as they are, but create environments for themselves to flourish.
In the business world, this is typically someone who starts their own business. Starting a successful business is a difficult thing to do, and it seems out of the question for those who don’t believe themselves to have the skills needed to succeed.
But what are those skills, and are we limiting ourselves by thinking that we can’t ever have them? Resiliency, creativity, leadership, and networking seem to be the common denominators among entrepreneurs.
Those are skills that are learned. There may be a person or two out there who are born with exceptional talents in those areas, but no person is born knowing how to start and operate a successful business.
Traditional college paths and special instructions from places like the Center for Executive Coaching are avenues you can take to facilitate specific talents in the business world. Let’s look at each skill individually, though, and discuss ways that you might be limiting yourself.
Resiliency: What Does it Take?
Resiliency is the quality that allows you to keep getting back on your feet. When you consistently fail, you must have the resiliency to brush yourself off, learn from your mistakes, and give it another try.
Failing is hard, and when your work is intimately tied to the failure, it can feel like you are a failure yourself. That is a key problem.
It’s important to remember that you will fail to some degree. You would be hard-pressed to find a successful person who has never failed. And if they have yet to fail, they will likely fail in the near future.
Getting hit in the face by life is a good thing, to a degree. You’re stronger after you fail because you know what you’ve done wrong and, if you’re determined enough, you will come back stronger the next time. Think of the way a muscle fiber tears, only to regroup stronger and more powerful than before.
In order to get through the toughest of times, though, you need to have an open mind. You must see the silver lining in times of trouble, and you have to learn from your mistakes. You also have to separate yourself from your shortcomings and look at the situation objectively.
Creativity in Entrepreneurship
Creativity is a skill that people are quick to either claim or deny when it comes to themselves. Many people are told from a very young age that they are either very creative or not creative at all.
If you’re in the latter category, you’ve been lied to. We are all creative to one degree or another, and creativity requires effort to manifest. No master painter or musician was born with their talents– they had to work hard and ride their passion to develop the skills to create beautiful works of art.
Sometimes, that process is boring. You need to break down your art (business, practice, skill, etc.) and understand each piece before you’re able to flourish.
If you’re applying creativity to entrepreneurial ability, that might mean buying or renting a number of books and studying them like crazy. Only when you understand an industry can you pinpoint ways to change it or start a business that would succeed in it.
This is another area of life that people are told to fit into. Most people aren’t raised with the idea that they would be a good leader.
A “good” leader, however, doesn’t look like any one person. People of all kinds are good leaders, and it’s often the overlooked skills of shy individuals that are most needed in leadership positions.
If you’re starting a business, you will inevitably need to lead. This doesn’t have to look exactly like it’s portrayed in the movies, with one person barking at their workers to stay in line.
More and more we’re finding that different tactics work in leading people. The most important thing you can do is understand your business model, care about your employees, and take steps to make life easy for them. When employees are cared for, they care about the work they do.
Networking and Social Skills
Communicating with people in different industries is a huge aid to success. When people know you and like you, they will help you.
This has been a common trait among successful people throughout the millennia. Networking is also an area of business and politics that is often abused and turned to nepotism. In other words, people get jobs when they don’t deserve them because they know the right people.
It’s important that you spread the word about your business, commune with different people in your community, and do your best to help them out. Working with powerful individuals can be mutually beneficial, as well as being individual for your employees and community.
Being on good terms with individuals of all stations is beneficial for your personal life as well as your business efforts. Who knows, down the line, you might need to do some business with the waiter at your business meeting.
Trying to Move Up in the World?
Entrepreneurial ability comes in many forms. One thing is certain, though, and it’s that anyone can hone the skills needed to succeed in this life.
Sometimes all that’s needed is a little advice, encouragement, and support. Check out this page for more ideas on expanding your business and finding success.