Ten traits of an entrepreneur

Starting a business – and succeeding with that business – is hard work.  Very, very hard work coupled with sacrifices and long, long hours but there’s something else that sets the highly successful apart, not just from the failures but also from the okay and the relatively successful, and that’s an entrepreneurial spark.  There’s no blueprint for entrepreneurs, no hard-and-fast rules but there are ten traits which all entrepreneurs share:

A never-say-die attitude

An absolute refusal to just give up, and total determination to succeed.  There will be times when success seems impossible but the entrepreneur will keep the goal in sight and keep going with drive and tenacity.

Ambition and passion

Ambition takes a dream or an idea and with the above-mentioned tenacity and determination plus a complete belief in what you’re doing, turns it into a business.  Coupled with passion for your concept, many of the other traits will follow naturally.  There’s no point putting everything into something that you just don’t care about that much, is there?

Willingness to take risks

Not just financial risks, although that’s a big part obviously, but risking friendships, a safe job, marital harmony… and to continue to do so from start-up onwards in order to grow and evolve.

Deals with failure

Not just dealing with failure but learning from it, as the old adage goes, ‘if at first you don’t succeed, try, try and try again’ and that still holds true.  Each failure – and there will invariably be many – leads toward success.


Both self-confidence – never arrogance – and confidence in your product.

Readiness to get your hands dirty.

Certainly in the early days, get down and get on with it, put yourself heart-and-soul into it and as the business grows continue to do so – your staff will respect you for it.

Flair for sales and networking

Without sales, there’s no success so sales ability is crucial and spreads into PR, marketing, recruitment, staff motivation – all areas of business.  Networking is a similar concept – basically selling yourself.

Financial know-how

Your plan has to be financially viable or else it’s just a pipe dream and it’s the same for growth and development.


When everything is going wrong but you’re rightfully determined not to give up, change – be flexible.

Hunger for learning

Never, ever stop learning.  Read, study, listen to others and be curious.