What in your opinion makes for a successful Entrepreneur?
Entrepreneurship as a fact has always been an integral part of the human society. It has become an engine of progress which led mankind from dark ages into the modern era. However, it was only first mentioned in the works of Adam Smith in the late 17th century. Moreover, the term “entrepreneurship” was largely avoided until the last 40 years (Schumpeter 2012). Nowadays, entrepreneurs have become iconic images of success, power and material stability. As a result, our society adopted this view and practically everyone tries to make their own entrepreneurial path in this world of ideas. Nonetheless, most of us encounter numerous obstacles on our paths which sometimes turn out to be complete disasters. This resulted in gradual research of various factors which help people deal with entrepreneurial issues. After intense research I have deduced four essential groups which make the most impact on the entrepreneurial personality. To my mind, these are interpersonal skills, organisation and leadership, innovation and creativity, and ability to take and deal with risk. I will support my arguments with relevant facts from peer reviewed literature and demonstrate how these skills influenced successful entrepreneurs in their own careers.
My first argument which makes for a successful entrepreneur is that it is essential to be communicable and be able to virtuously interact with other people. Social skills are import in day-to-day life, as well as in business. Being able to effectively communicate and transfer your own thoughts and opinion to others is an integral aspect of being a successful entrepreneur. It was emphasised that “setting up a business is a social process” which requires a deliberate approach (Porter 1980, cited in Dolgovaa 2012 p.9). Furthermore “social capital” provides entrepreneurs with three beneficial factors: “enhanced access to information, increased levels of trust and cooperation from others” (Porter 1980, cited in Dolgovaa 2012 p.9). Apparently, social capital falls into a category which manages all of the other resources by means of gathering information, finding customers and suppliers, establishing networking connection and other elements which are required for a consistent operation of an enterprise. However, communication does not lie in the foundation of business it is just an important mean of sustaining it. Hence, entrepreneurs should possess other knowledge which will be boosted by exceptional interpersonal skills. Aforementioned skills demonstrate their usefulness by “overcoming the liability of newness and assist with reducing overall cost, time and effort in setting-up a business” (Porter 1980, cited in Dolgovaa 2012 p.9). Nonetheless, in the 21st century there are other ways of advertising your own enterprise. Therefore, social skills are not essential in this case, but the fact that they generally reduce tangible and intangible expenditure stays proven. An exceptional example of a great entrepreneur who mastered his communication skills is Russian entrepreneur Roman Abramovich. Over the years he managed to start-up a considerable number of businesses who had their ups and downs, though eventually he found his wealth and success in his company Millhouse LLC (Liga Poleznih Ludej 2007). Evidently, entrepreneurs possess other qualities and sometimes even go beyond the borders of standardized social and legal norms to achieve a high level of prosperity. Burns (2011) alleges that one of the most essential qualities that an entrepreneur can obtain is self-confidence, because “facing uncertainty, it is essential to believe in you own judgement” (p.38). This closely deals with risk taking which I will discuss later in the essay, but it also shows that when we socialise we have to stand our grounds in order to persuade interlocutors and show them your points of view. Moreover, Burns (2011) demonstrates that being self-confident is essential while managing others as it is obligatory to “encourage them and show their own confidence” (p.433). Although, it is vital to keep in mind that “confidence can’t be overdone and turn to an exaggerated opinion” (Burns 2011 p.436). Frequently, people get too carried away on their ideas and do not see other options. I firmly believe that successful entrepreneur must find a “golden mean” and combine confidence and ability to listen to others. These key elements display that interpersonal skills have an essential role in a life of entrepreneurs’ and significantly influence their performance in business.