Being an Entrepreneur: Skillful, Creative, Committed


A small business owner is expected to be creative and inventive, if s/he is expected to succeed in the operation of his/her enterprise. While small business owners are not expected to be geniuses, most of them are entrepreneurs, and therefore must possess the skill, creativity and commitment to their craft in order to be successful. If you have a sneaky feeling that creativity is not one of your strong points, you may then ask, what can I do to stimulate my brain and get it kicked-started?

Here are a few ideas you might take a look at to help you reach your creative objectives:

Be Unlimited

Too many people are ‘limited thinkers’. They have their world placed squarely in a box and nothing can exist outside of that. If the newspaper reports something then it must be right. If Joe next door says that something is impossible then he must be right. As a small business owner, you cannot afford to be a ‘limited thinker’.

You have to be an ‘unlimited thinker’ in order to be a successful entrepreneur or enterpriser. Get into the habit of seeing no boundaries; decide that there are no taboos. Be imaginative, originative, even fanciful. Have the belief that with a bit of focus you can find a creative solution to all of your problems. This is the foundation for a creative thought process.

Be Future-Focused

Creative ideas invariably come when you ‘look’ into the future. The feeling of propelling yourself forward and seeing the problem solved is a great motivator. Do you think you could achieve the same result if you were backward focused? I don’t think so! Train yourself to be future-focused, always looking ahead, not a traditional thinker who tries to find answers in today’s world.

Be a Writer

Once you open your mind to the joys of creativity the ideas will quickly start flowing, as if someone has opened the flood gates! Just like flood water, unless you catch it the ideas are lost for ever. Capture all your ideas by carrying a small pocket notebook with you. As soon as an idea pops into your mind, write it down. It doesn’t matter how outlandish it is, you can look at it in the cold light of day later on.

The fact you are responding to the ideas by noting them will further encourage you to be even more creative – good deeds encourage more good deeds! And the same can be said of “good habits”. If you get into a good habit routine, you will be pleasantly surprised at how your actions will automatically adjust to the good habit routine with little effort on your part.

Be Clutter-Free

If you are naturally an untidy person, then get out of the habit! A cluttered office will lead to a cluttered mind. You cannot expect your brain to work efficiently when all it’s doing is constantly reminding you how untidy your office is. To be creative remove all the clutter from your life and free your mind.

Be Action-Oriented

All of these points are great, but if you don’t take any action with your ideas, then you may as well not have bothered. An idea is nothing but a thought unless you take a specific action to help bring it to life. Periodically review your notebook and see if there are any hidden gems, or ideas which can be quickly actioned.

A lot of your ideas may not suit at all but in there somewhere is probably an idea, which if acted upon, could change you or your business. Commit fully to move forward on as many of your ideas as you can. Don’t be afraid to break down the boundary walls. As John Stuart Mill said, “That which seems the height of absurdity in one generation often becomes the height of wisdom in the next.”


And Yes…Be A Dreamer!

There’s a great line in Alice in Wonderland when the Queen says, “Sometimes I think of 6 impossible things before breakfast.” I think you’ll agree that this has to be creativity at its best! As a small business owner this is an ideal you really need to strive for … but how on earth can you open up your mind to get to the point where ideas just spill out?

I’ll leave you with this thought to ponder: If you can be creative enough to be dismissed as a dreamer, you may just be on the fast track to success as an entrepreneur. If not, you need a little practice, and NOW may be as good a time to get started as any.

How Is Entrepreneurship Defined?


In discussing entrepreneurship and writing articles on the subject, it seems logical to me – or sensible anyway – to begin the discussion by agreeing on exactly what the word or term means to us as participants in the discussion.

Entrepreneurship is the process of creating or seizing an opportunity, and pursuing it regardless of the resources currently in one’s control. According to Wikipedia entrepreneurship is defined as “the act of being an entrepreneur, which can be defined as ‘one who undertakes innovations, finance and business acumen in an effort to transform innovations into economic goods’. This may result in new organizations or may be part of revitalizing mature organizations in response to a perceived opportunity”.
Dictionary.com defines entrepreneur as “a person who organizes and manages any enterprise, especially a business, usually with considerable initiative and risk”.

These are rather abstract concepts for a person just beginning to consider whether s/he ought to start a business rather than take a job, or leave a secure job for a chance at greater self-fulfillment. Let us try to refine our understanding of entrepreneurship by asking some more specific questions.

Is everyone who runs a business an entrepreneur? Many would not consider the newspaper carrier, shoeshine person, and grass cutter entrepreneurs, though these are often the youthful pursuits of those with an entrepreneurial characteristics, if not aspirations. In fact, lawn manicurists today are managers of well-managed businesses.

Does it matter whether the endeavor is merely part-time? Whereas some part-time activities are basically hobbies, or undertaken to supplement income – similar to certain jobs and types of employment – some entrepreneurial ventures can be tested in the marketplace on a part-time basis.

The path to an entrepreneurial venture might begin by earning a salary in the business you expect to enter, while learning more about it, and waiting for the opportune time to go out on your own. This time can be used to develop a support network – professional and personal – and generate ideas to “bounce off” people whose opinions you respect.

At what scope does self-employment become a venture? The primary objective of many self-employed people is merely to employ themselves (and others if necessary) at a moderate to good rate of pay (or salary); some are even willing to eke out a living to do what they enjoy. This approach is often referred to as a “lifestyle” business, and is generally accompanied by little, if any, plan for growth.

These questions are intended, not to develop a precise definition of entrepreneurship, but to develop a better understanding of our attitude toward its many forms of expression. We may each answer these questions differently, yet we all answer them appropriately within our own frames of reference.

Entrepreneurship is more an attitude than a skill or a profession. Some of us may prefer employment in a corporate or public service field, but many would choose an entrepreneurial opportunity that “feels right.”

Would you consider a person who inherits a business an entrepreneur? From the point of inheritance on, it is their own money and financial security at risk. They could possibly sell the business, invest the proceeds in blue-chip stocks, and live off dividends. Some might consider managing a personal stock portfolio for a living as an entrepreneurial venture.

Would a person who inherited a small or marginal business, then took it to new dimensions be considered an entrepreneur? The inheritor could have tried merely to keep it going, or even to pace the business’ decline to just carry them to retirement. In a family-held business, long-term success is often a central goal.

Are franchise owners entrepreneurs? Many feel that, for those who have access to the large up-front investment, franchises are sure things. For many, operating a franchise is similar to investing in “blue chips,” a relatively sure thing with generally unexciting returns.

So whether you’re inclined to work in an atmosphere where you call your own shots, take your own risks and take your destiny into your own hands; Or you prefer the guaranteed salary, set hours and safe (free of risks) circumstances offered by a job, it is good to have a clear understanding of both kinds of work before pursuing either. And since most people have a relatively good understanding of a salaried job (or position as the case may be), I hope we’ve defined entrepreneurship in a way that is easy to understand.