You have an idea, you can make it viable and get validation financially and line up customers. Congratulations, you could become an entrepreneur! You could even become one if you are in college if your idea checks the desired list. Or can you?
Watch as Anil Chhikara, an Entrepreneur at Heart and the Judge of India’s first startup reality TV show answers the questions in our third video of the six Part Video Series that focusses on examining whether your personality ticks off the five traits of an entrepreneur.
There can be no good results without passion. It goes without saying the first required trait in a list of five top ones would be this. Without passion and desire to succeed and achieve something, we can be as good or bad as anyone else and there remains little point to the entire effort. But hold on, it’s not as simple as being passionate about setting up a startup. You must be passionate about a problem or requirement your idea seeks to fix or fulfill the world. You see a void out there in the world and when you passionately seek to fulfill it that becomes the seed to your idea for the startup.
Passion alone is of no use unless you have the required skill set to support your enthusiasm. Blood, sweat, toil needs to be complemented by a sure skill set, the examination of which again needs to be tailored to your startup idea. For instance, if you have an idea which deals with artificial intelligence but you yourself have little or no knowledge about the field then you would be setting yourself up for failure. Depending on the startup idea, your own skill set plus the skills of those you hire to be part of your core team must include knowledge and strengths that could complement the idea.
So, if your idea involves selling something to hospitals, you would need a person whose sales game is on point. If your idea involves food, the knowledge of ingredients, where to procure them at the best prices, knowledge of vendors and markets, and the basic skill of food preparation must be in place, in addition to others. Hence, your skill set needs to be prepared to best enhance your startup idea, and remember, some of the required skills could also be outsourced.
Patience and perseverance are two major keys in the world of entrepreneurship. The ability of not giving up will take you extra miles down the road to success. A significant thing to remember is the world will be at your back trying to tell you “This can’t be done”, “This is impossible”. But remember, they are saying that, since it hasn’t been done yet and that is why with your unique idea, a solution and the essential skill set, you as an entrepreneur can make it possible and ensure it’s done. This is where perseverance will play a vital role in the face of negativity and dissuasion by all. Travel that extra mile when everyone else has given up. It’s not clichéd but the truth to say – When the going gets tough, the tough must really get going.
Another important thing is to sell yourself well along with honing your people skills. The very essence of a startup lies in convincing a whole lot of people that your dream must become a necessary reality. It could start with something as simple as getting a co-founder on board and that is what will first put your selling skills and your people skills to the test. When you wish to hire employees, but need to convince them to come in at a lower pay scale than the industry standards, or to an environment which may be less equipped than anything more established out there you again need to employ your people skills to sell your dream, the vision and the faith in it to them.
The last but most essential to the entire process would be your risk-taking ability. Imagine a scenario where you go for an extensive study and research into the market to figure a need for your idea and more often than not, due to a lot of variables involved, you could either get an entirely different result from what you expected or could get a mixed response that muddles you up. In that moment, consider the pros, and cons and go with your gut. While planning and groundwork are essential it must not become the be all and end all of your processes and this is where the risk-taking ability kicks in. You need to take that leap of faith, take the plunge and take that risk.
So to sum up, essentially the five traits of an entrepreneur include being passionate about the problem you are attempting to solve, you must have the skills required to solve that problem and take it to the right audience, you must persevere till you achieve the required result, you must learn to sell your solution and the fact that there is a problem in the first place to the right set of personnel, and you must be ready to trust your gut and to take risks while doing all this. The world is your oyster and you can be its gleaming entrepreneur.