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10 Characteristics of an Entrepreneur

Updated on June 19, 2013

An entrepreneur is a person who uses their creativeness and innovation to organize ideas before effectively managing the start of a business and eventually running the business in order to monetize their ideas.

So that's the definition of an entrepreneur, what makes up the characteristics of an entrepreneur?

What is it about these people who come up with all these ideas and make you look bad by eventually making more money then you ever will at your regular job? (No offense!)

In the case of Bill Gates (Microsoft), Steve Jobs (Apple), Mark Zuckerburg (Facebook), Evan Williams and Biz Stone (Twitter), they were all college dropouts! So a high quality education isn't absolutely necessary to be a successful entrepreneur - so what is it about these people that made them them think that there are bigger and better things out there than the almighty diplomas and benefits of a job?

Here are the 10 characteristics of most entrepreneurs:

  1. You are driven by motivation and ambition
  2. Highly disciplined
  3. Leadership, planning, and management skills
  4. You are proactive and take initiative
  5. Learn from your mistakes and the mistakes of others
  6. Realize that success is the only option
  7. Willing to exploit new opportunities
  8. Knowledgeable of the subject matter and willing to learn more
  9. You prefer the excitement of risk
  10. You are committed no matter the obstacles

I believe we can all be creative and innovative - the default characteristics of an entrepreneur I believe we all share. We are all different whether it be in our knowledge, intellect, situation, or skill level, but those differences are where we derive our creative and innovative ideas from. If we are not all different, we would all have the same ideas and be doing the same thing.

We all have the ability to learn. If you lack some of the characteristics of an entrepreneur, or anything in general for that matter, there are always ways to acquire them. For example, if you do not have management skills you can always take a management class or ask for more managerial duties at your regular job. Or, if you generally don't like taking risks, learn about what makes it risky and find more information on it. The more you know, the more you can manage the risk. It's all about your determination and how much effort you put in.

Eventually, an entrepreneur must also start up the business and run it. They will have a lot of work and responsibility and bumps along the way, but the sweet taste of success is much stronger than any potential roadblocks. You need to have an entrepreneurial spirit that burns with passion for success from the start of an idea to the establishment of the business.

Entrepreneurs also share an emotional trait - optimism. Being negative and pessimistic about things just does not get you anywhere.

So "keep looking up, cuz that's where it all is!"

If you think you have the characteristics of an entrepreneur and have doubts about starting your own business, check out this article on Six Reasons to Start your own Business.


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    • ChrisCampbell05 profile image

      Chris 2 years ago from Tampa, FL

      we are frequently approached by entrepreneurs and the ones that we see make it are the ones who are not afraid to fail.

    • profile image

      kituye 4 years ago

      am proud to be an entrepreneur

    • profile image

      John Cameron 4 years ago

      Entrepreneurs bring business ideas to life and that's challenging. Like the article says then the entrepreneur has to run the business. Which means they have to design, build and manage the company as well as the development of the business idea.

      Fortunately the challenges faced during the process of building a company are relatively consistent across all types of enterprises.

      From the book ROCK SOLID - How to Strengthen Your Company

      John Cameron

    • profile image

      2qrw 5 years ago


    • Knowing Truth profile image

      Knowing Truth 6 years ago from Malaysia

      another important characterisitc of an entrepreneur is upholding good ethics in all his/ger business and personal dealings.

    • nathanross profile image

      nathanross 7 years ago

      I believe the reason why there are many people who do not succeed or struggle when they start a business is because lets face it, not everyone is cut out to own their own business or not to mention start one up. Just like not everyone is cut out to play football or basketball or even cooking. On the other hand,in order for someone to be successful if they choose to follow through with owning a business, they must take all the necessary steps in order for them to succeed. It will be a tough one, but anyone who works hard at it will eventually get to where they need to be.

    • Entrenpaneur profile image

      Entrenpaneur 7 years ago from South London

      only 1% of all entrepreneurs are wealthy, 20% are doing ok and onlh 10% make a decent living. The rest just struggle...never believe everyone makes money when they start up a business, if that were the case, everyone would be doing it! Love the blog