So, you want to develop the mindset of an entrepreneur and build a successful business? Well, you’re in the right place.
Entrepreneurs come in all shapes, sizes, and ages, and they can be from anywhere. But what makes someone an entrepreneur? The answer: their mindsets and the way they think.
You see, we go to school and our teachers taught us how to get good grades because they are preparing us for getting a good job. But, what about entrepreneurship? What if you want to start a business? What if you want to provide jobs rather than seek a job?
Entrepreneurs are people who decided to carve their own paths. They decided to start a business and employ others rather than following the path that has been laid out by others…
It is not an easy path, but that doesn’t mean it is impossible. And if you want to become a successful entrepreneur, you need to learn how to think like an entrepreneur.
Here are 10 entrepreneurial mindsets you should develop…
1. Dare to Dream Big and Bold
Here’s one of the most inspiring quotes that describe why an entrepreneur should think big and bold:
“Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people will not feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone, and as we let our light shine, we unconsciously give others permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”Marianne Williamson
We were born to play big, win big, and do big things.
If you were to ask a 5-year-old what he’s aspired to become, he will tell you he wants to become an astronaut to explore the outer space; he will tell you he wants to become a policeman and keep his neighborhood peaceful; he will tell you he wants to become a doctor and saves lives.
Whatever his dreams, he’s crystal clear about what he wanted to be, and to the 5-year-old, his goal is something big and fun to accomplish.
You have to learn from the 5-year-old. Dare to dream big and bold again.
As you go through life, you’ve been brainwashed by society and community and bought into the beliefs that there is a limit to what you can do.
You’re like an elephant being leashed by a puny chain. You have to understand that there are no limits to what you can achieve.
But first, you must dare to dream big and bold.
Take a look at SpaceX’s mission. Here’s what the founder, Elon Musk said…
“You want to wake up in the morning and think the future is going to be great – and that’s what being a spacefaring civilization is all about. It’s about believing in the future and thinking that the future will be better than the past. And I can’t think of anything more exciting than going out there and being among the stars.”
That’s right, so the first mentality you should develop as an entrepreneur is to think big and bold. Dare to dream big because your playing small doesn’t serve the world, and it doesn’t serve your life too.
2. Think Long-Term and Delay Gratification
The second mindset you want to build is the ability to think long-term. We’ve been conditioned to think short-term and to want instant gratification.
We used to wait for days to receive letters, but these days, you can send an email with a click of a button, and the next second, the email has arrived in the person’s inbox. There’s literally no waiting time.
We want things fast and if possible, we want them now. This is why instant coffee sells like hotcakes. People want instant gratification.
But wanting things fast or focusing on the short-term may not be ideal for an entrepreneur. Growing a business takes time. And most people fail to realize that they need to go through the process in order to get the results.
There are no shortcuts to becoming a successful entrepreneur. You have to go through the process.
Imagine you were given a $1,000 bonus. Are you going to spend it and buy unnecessary things? Or are you going to invest it for long-term gain?
The majority will spend the $1,000 because they cannot resist the temptation of instant gratification.
However, those who choose to think long-term and those who delay gratification will choose to invest the surplus so that they will have more in the future.
As Warren Buffett famously quoted:
“Someone is sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago.”
The success you want is created today, not 20 years from now.
Thus, think long-term. Think far into the future. And most importantly, say no to instant gratification.
- How to Think Long-Term: 7 Tips to Foster Your Long-Term Thinking
- How Delay Gratification Can Greatly Impact Your Success
- Why Delayed Gratification is Important to Your Success
3. Solve Problems and Change Lives
As an entrepreneur, your mission should be to solve problems and change lives. If you read the biographies of successful entrepreneurs, you will notice every successful business has its own unique way of solving problems and changing lives.
Google is a multi-billion-dollar business. And it wants to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.
What about Starbucks? Starbucks doesn’t just sell coffees. Starbucks wants to inspire and nurture the human spirit – one person, one cup, and one neighborhood at a time.
As you can see, every entrepreneur has his or her unique ways of solving a problem in their respective industry or touching/changing lives.
Why? Because if you start a business that is all about you, nobody will be interested in it and you will quickly lose your motivation.
To build a successful business, it should also be about others, not just you.
Imagine if Starbucks only cares about profits and making the most out of every customer. They will never bother creating a ‘second place’ between your work and home. They will never invest so much into building a store that people keep wanting to go back to.
Starbucks isn’t just about selling coffees, instead, they are creating an experience, a third place in your daily lives.
As described by this article from FastCompany.com:
“Starbucks goal is to become the Third Place in our daily lives. (i.e. Home, Work, and Starbucks) “We want to provide all the comforts of your home and office. You can sit in a nice chair, talk on your phone, look out the window, surf the web… oh, and drink coffee too,” said Kelly. (Notice she put “drink coffee” last???)”
Therefore, to think like an entrepreneur, you must focus on solving problems, creating values, and changing lives.
Building a business is not just about making an income, it is about making an impact. That’s how successful entrepreneurs did it.
4. Get Comfortable with the Uncomfortable
If you keep doing the same things, you will keep getting the same results. And that means if you want something different, you will need to do something that you have never done before.
So, the fourth entrepreneur mindset you should build is to get comfortable with the uncomfortable.
This means venturing out of your comfort zone and doing different things. Dare to try out new things.
Entrepreneurs are visionaries and explorers. They are willing to try out new things and change the status quo.
Think about Tesla. Tesla has a mission to revolutionize the entire mobile industry through the use of electric vehicles. The same goes for SpaceX. SpaceX wanted to make interstellar travel possible for the general masses.
You have to get out of your comfort zone and challenge yourself to do the impossible.
As entrepreneurs, you must adapt and change according to market demands. Take a look at Motorola. It is the company that created the mobile phone, but where is the company now?
And Nokia was once an industry leader, but today, both Nokia and Motorola have become obsolete because they were slow to change.
This is why you want to get comfortable with the uncomfortable. Constantly challenge yourself to do what most people don’t dare to do.
5. Harness the Growth and Abundance Mindset
Next, you want to harness the growth and abundance mindset. Most people focus on the problems, but if you want to become a successful entrepreneur, you should focus on the solution.
Here’s a great saying to illustrate what I mean:
“If you are not willing to learn, no one can help you. If you are determined to learn, no one can stop you.”Zig Ziglar
Opportunities are everywhere. You just need to train yourself to see them.
When Richard Branson was stranded at Puerto Rico airport because his flight was canceled, he did not look at it as a problem. Rather, he chose to see the situation as an opportunity.
Branson chartered an airplane and sold tickets to the other stranded passengers. That was how he got the idea of starting an airline.
When the scientist in 3M wanted to invent a strong adhesive, they failed. Instead of a strong adhesive, they came up with a weak and pressure-sensitive adhesive. But because they believe opportunities were everywhere, they chose to change the way how they used the adhesive.
They created the Post-It Notes, which became a billion-dollar product for 3M.
As an entrepreneur, you have to look at things from a different perspective. Instead of looking at the situation as a problem, look at it as an opportunity.
6. Build a Team
You cannot succeed as an entrepreneur all by yourself. You need help from others.
When Steve Jobs started Apple, he started with a few other friends in his parents’ garage. Do you know that Henry Ford, Thomas Edison, Harvey Firestone, and John Burroughs were good friends? They called themselves the Four Vagabonds and learned from each other.
Walt Disney did not succeed alone as well. Walt started with his brother, Roy Disney. The same with Elon Musk who started Zip2 with his brother, Kimbal Musk.
As an entrepreneur, you need to think in terms of “we” instead of “me”.
If you look at all the successful businesses out there, you will learn that all of them started with a team of people.
Therefore, assemble your team. Practice collaboration with others to go further. There is an African saying:
“If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.”
7. Understand There Will Be Problems and Obstacles
That’s right, there will always be problems and obstacles along the journey. They are inevitable.
However, do not look at problems as problems or obstacles as mere obstacles, instead, look at them as feedback that will help you grow in your journey.
There will be no success without failure. Think about it, how do people become successful? Well, they make good decisions. And how do they make good decisions? They learned through experience, right? And how do they gain experience? Through learning from failure.
So, never look at problems as problems. Treat problems as an opportunity for you to grow. The more you overcome, the more you will learn. And the more you learn, the more you can succeed.
As an entrepreneur, you will face many defeats, but that does not mean you should be defeated. As long as you don’t give up and continue to learn through the journey, you will become someone better and worthy of the success you desire.
That’s how an entrepreneur thinks.
8. Be Driven and Tenacious
There’s no way you can become an entrepreneur if you are not driven and have no tenacity to do things.
As you already know, success in the business world is not a walk in the park. And the results will not come to you overnight. You will have to endure and persist for a sustained period to produce the results you desire.
Hence, if you are not self-driven and if you are not tenacious, you will never become a successful entrepreneur.
Once, someone asked Elon Musk if he could inspire him to succeed in his business, this was what Elon said:
“If you need inspiring words, don’t do it.”
That’s right. If you need someone to motivate you only to do it, then you shouldn’t do it. A successful entrepreneur should be self-driven.
It is true that there will be times when you feel down and need encouragement, but for the most part, you should be self-driven. You need to have the inner drive that motivates you from within.
9. Be Decisive and Responsible
As an entrepreneur, you have to be decisive and take full responsibility for what you have decided.
You see, when you run a business, you must confront problems and make many decisions every day. And most of the time, you will have to make decisions without adequate information.
However, you should not be afraid of making decisions. As author Jodi Picoult once said, “You can always edit a bad page. You can’t edit a blank page.”
It is better to decide quickly and then stick to the decision you have made than to wait and make no decisions.
Some people say that successful people are quick to decide and slow to change their decisions. But unsuccessful people are slow in making a decision and quick to change what they have decided.
What about you? Are you decisive? And do you take 100% responsibility for what you have decided?
10. Adapt and Learn from Feedback
Finally, if you want to think like an entrepreneur, you must adapt and learn from feedback. There is no way you can succeed without growth and improvement. And the only way to grow and improve is through learning from feedback.
What’s the feedback? Failures. Mistakes.
AS you already know, the journey to success is full of bumps and detours. It is not a straight line. Therefore, you must be able to turn failures into feedback and/or opportunity.
Becoming a successful entrepreneur is going to be difficult, but it is not impossible either. This is why you must have the ability to adapt, learn, and improve from the mistakes and failures you have made.
Here’s the bad news – you cannot develop an entrepreneurial mindset overnight. And here’s the good news – you can start to think like an entrepreneur right now. One day or day one, you choose.
When you started to think and act like an entrepreneur, you will eventually become one.
Do you share any of these entrepreneurship mentalities? Leave your comment below and let me know.