Management & Leadership

6 habits of highly successful entrepreneurs

Mar 28, 2019

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Many of the strategies employed by successful entrepreneurs can be adopted by anyone, and are likely to result in improved effectiveness. Here are six examples.

When you imagine the epitome of entrepreneurial success, you probably think of seemingly untouchable figures like Elon Musk and Steve Jobs. Such individuals appear to operate on a different spectrum from the rest of humanity, and many aspiring entrepreneurs wonder if it’s even possible to learn anything from them. Were they simply born with inherent qualities that cannot be emulated?

But if you investigate their methods, you’ll find that successful entrepreneurs have certain things in common. There are similarities in the way they think, and the way they approach challenges.

6 habits of successful entrepreneurs

Many of the strategies employed by successful entrepreneurs can be adopted by anyone, and are likely to result in improved effectiveness. Here are six examples:

Have a vision

Many of the world’s most successful entrepreneurs have known failure in their time. Elon Musk and Steve Jobs certainly had their fair share of potentially career-ending moments. So what kept them going?

Having a vision you believe in makes it possible to weather any storm. It can take years, even decades of hard work, but so long as you know what you’re working toward, getting there is just a detail.

Entrepreneurs dare to dream of things that mere mortals would not have thought possible. According to Sherrie Campbell, psychologist and author of Success Equations: A Path to Living an Emotionally Wealthy Life, entrepreneurs “…are naturally innovative and crave being in the constant process of discovery. They credit their imagination as their most powerful asset.”

Have a routine

When there’s so much to get done, a daily routine helps manage the stress that comes with being an entrepreneur. Sherrie Campbell writes that entrepreneurs are “known to create and live nearly obsessively by simple yet practical routines”.

You can come up with creative ways of structuring your routine. Jack Dorsey, the co-founder of Twitter, assigns each day of the week to a specific area of the company. For example, Wednesdays are for marketing and communications, Thursdays for developers and partnerships, and Fridays for company culture and recruiting.

Incorporating exercise and healthy eating into the routine is common practice among entrepreneurs. They need to stay healthy, manage stress, and avoid burning themselves out.

Be flexible

While a routine helps, entrepreneurs also need to be able to adapt to changes in their environment. After all, the life of an entrepreneur is a constant learning experience. If you wanted to focus on one thing your whole life, you wouldn’t be an entrepreneur. A common saying for entrepreneurs is “be stubborn in your goals, but flexible in your methods”.

Cover for your limitations

Every Steve Jobs needs a Steve Wozniac, and every Steve Wozniac needs a Steve Jobs. Whether you see yourself as the frontman or the engineer, the point is that an entrepreneur needs a partner who complements them.

A key to Apple’s success was that the co-founders each understood their role. Steve Wozniac could easily have given into ego and sought the spotlight, but he was fine with leaving the marketing side of things to Steve Jobs, who clearly had a better understanding of it. As Deep Patel, author of A Paperboy’s Fable: The 11 Principles of Success, writes: “If both Apple co-founders had striven for the fame Jobs attained, neither would have gotten it. In fact, it was their differing skill sets that allowed the entire vision to unfold.”

Create value

Most successful entrepreneurs set out to create something they feel would genuinely improve the world in some way. The money they make as a result is a by-product, rather than the goal itself. Steve Wozniac held this up as one of the core ideals, when he said that an entrepreneur should “create solutions to your own problems’.’

If you create something you truly believe in, then convincing the customers of its value becomes a lot easier. Don’t rely on market trends and advertising data to tell you what customers want; make something you want, and the rest follows. A true visionary creates something the customers need before they even know they need it.

Keeping a journal

According to Sherrie Campbell: “Writing has proven to have numerous benefits. It requires engagement from both sides of the brain, making the brainstorming or problem-solving process more complete and innovative.” For an entrepreneur; keeping a record of your goals, methods and frustrations can be helpful; especially considering how many thoughts and ideas may pop into your head in a single day.

Can aspiring entrepreneurs benefit from professional coaching?

The ability to set goals, motivate yourself and manage others are all key qualities of a successful entrepreneur. They are also important areas of focus in professional coaching, a career that continues to gain popularity.

Professional coaches can work in a wide range of contexts, including entrepreneurial start-ups, educational institutions and private practice; and their skills are highly sought after by companies looking to improve worker efficiency. For more information on the coaching courses available at SACAP, enquire now.

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