Friday, February 22, 2013

What are the characteristics of an entrepreneur?

Here is an interesting question about the characteristics of an entrepreneur, the answers are from well know and successful entrepreneur. This is "informal talk".

Entrepreneurship, Characteristics that are essential to the character of an entrepreneur, Characteristics of an entrepreneur.

Characteristics that are essential to the character of an entrepreneur

The first answers is from Matt Cohler

I think the details are actually a very little bit by market; but to abstract out from that to what some of we all have been talking about; I think that the most important thing is that it's something that comes from passion, for whatever it is that you are doing, whatever it is you are building, whatever it is you are making, whatever problem it is you are solving, whatever new thing it is you are bringing into the world.

There are a few people out there for whom that passion is actually the act of entrepreneurship, and those are people who I think generally are called serial entrepreneurs. For those people it really is like entrepreneurship itself, is the thing that they are passionate about. On the other hand, a lot of people who are great entrepreneurs and don't even necessarily sort of self-identify as entrepreneurs, they just self-identify as: "Yeah I am doing this thing, - I don't even want to do this, - This is just what I do or I have to do this".

So I do think the details are very little bit by market, the best abstraction or the best example template that I can think of is Martin Luther. That's the sort of template that I always hold off for somebody who is a great entrepreneur.

The reason that I say Martin Luther in particular is, you need to sort of be just a little bit crazy, have conviction that your idea and your way is the way the world needs to go; but not to the point of irrationality and self-destruction.

Next answers is from Gurbaksh Chahal

I think one characteristic you got to swallow really-really hard is, you got to embrace rejection, and sometimes it is the hardest thing to do as a human being. But if you can swallow it, understand and deal with it, you are going to probably solve 80% of your problems.

If you just look at my career path, nobody wanted to fund me. I was doing millions of dollars of revenue and millions of dollars of profit but nobody wanted to fund me because I wasn't part of the dotcom Euphoria in the way things looked at least back in the heyday.

Then with BlueLithium I had three different venture capitalists that pool away from doing a deal with me at the last minute. So imagine celebrating with your employees and realizing oh we are going to get millions of dollars in for the company and then getting it pulled. I even had one very famous venture firm in the valley told me that I was going to miserably fail at BlueLithium and that I should listen to them and you know divert my attention to something that's actually going to work.

But you know if you look at that, and then just kind of look at even other industries you will find founders of companies that have tried over 50 times before and investor said yes.

For example if you look at J K Rowling - now a well-respected author and billionaire, she got rejected seven times from her first book. So all that comes down to the human nature of realizing what your pain tolerance is for embracing rejection and so long as you can grow a fixed skin, and focus on that objective, you will prevail.

There is more to mention, make sure to come back soon for more characteristics of an entrepreneur.