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Are You An Entrepreneur?

Updated Friday, 10th June 2005
We examine the characteristics of successful entrepreneurs.

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Has he got what it takes? Fast Show character Swiss Toni

Have you got what it takes to be an entrepreneur? Entrepreneurs are known for their self-confidence, energy, flexibility and opportunism. They are accustomed to getting involved and expect positive results from their involvement. In other words, they are prepared to use energy and mental effort because they expect, and often receive, appropriate rewards.

The following 14 characteristics are often found amongst people who have successfully started a new venture:

  • drive and energy
  • self-confidence
  • high initiative and personal responsibility
  • internal locus of control (that is, you believe your own behaviour determines what happens to you, more so than external influences)
  • tolerance of ambiguity
  • low fear of failure
  • moderate risk-taking
  • prepared for long-term involvement
  • seeing money as a measure of success; not merely an end in itself
  • effective use of feedback
  • continuous pragmatic problem solving
  • effective use of resources
  • self-imposed standards
  • clear goal-setting

Successful entrepreneurs have high internal locus of control. They believe that, to a large extent, what they do determines what happens to them – more so than chance or the actions of others. This is linked to the need for autonomy and personal independence expressed by many entrepreneurs as their prime motivation for setting up their own firms. You can find out more about the locus of control - and take a simple test to discover your own here on OpenLearn.

If you want to boost your feeling of internal locus of control, try setting yourself attainable objectives and pushing yourself to achieve them.


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