7 Characteristics of Successful Entrepreneurs

Everyone loves to pontificate about what it takes to be a successful entrepreneur, myself included. There’s no one “right” answer but rather many different traits, that when combined, result in great outcomes. Here are the seven most common characteristics I’ve observed about successful entrepreneurs:

  • Forward-looking – able to anticipate trends, opportunities, and future organizational challenges
  • Hard working – they love putting in the hours and realizing a sense of satisfaction when accomplishing goals
  • Passionate – true enthusiasm and energy around the work that they do
  • Opinionated – ready and willing to take a stand for how they believe things should be done
  • Confident – when someone looks you in the eye and tells you they can do it, even if it’s far fetched, you’re more likely to believe them
  • Resourceful – when there are so many unknowns, it takes unique talent to put everything together on the fly
  • Positive – with the roller coaster ride that is entrepreneurship, staying positive helps the team get through very low lows

Notice I didn’t say smart, high integrity, or any number of other common characteristics that might be thrown around. Those are often present but I’ve seen cases where some items were less than desired. These seven characteristics have proved to be the most common in successful entrepreneurs I know.

What else? What are your thoughts on these seven characteristics of successful entrepreneurs?

12 thoughts on “7 Characteristics of Successful Entrepreneurs

  1. I’d add Maverick (a cousin of Forward Looking, Opinionated, and Confident) to your great list.

    Most successful business owners that I know are quite comfortable questioning convention, holding unpopular (some might call them crazy) opinions, and pursuing their own path.

    They reject justifications like, “Because that’s how we’ve been doing it,” or “Most people think that….” They ask, “Why?”

  2. I’m surprised you didn’t include ‘focused’ to the list. You could be all the things above but if you’re not on a singular mission, you could easily spread your talents too thin. Agree?

  3. Everything you say is true, but in reality it is very hard to follow, when everything you do seams to always doesn’t work.But you did not talk about the traffic,haveing a list. In biz. these are the most important things to an Entepreneur.

    1. You can also add being Serious, Committed, Ambitious/Aggressive, Resilient, Focused, Ernest and Determined…

  4. Experience. Past failure is a good thing to possess. So many young people consider themselves entrepreneurs when in fact they have no idea what it takes or how to lead.

    Team Leader. You’ve got to be able to motivate and inspire your team, lead by example, rally the troops during the dips, laugh, keep morale up, deal with multiple personalities, deal with power struggles, know when to say “no”, keep the team emotionally healthy, create healthy, humble, team oriented oriented culture etc.

  5. We think there are three basic columns for the successful entrepreneur or intrapreneur:

    1. Self-responsibility sense. Whatever happens all depends on my own performance.
    2. Proactive. The entrepreneur is able to make his interests happen, always.
    3. Propositive. Even though the team has no answer there are many possible solutions to implement.

    1. I agree with you Peter.. persistence or perseverance… is key. It’s what you have when working hard but your goals aren’t visibly being achieved. That’s what keeps you going.

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