Do you want to run your own business and be successful in it? Then YOU have to be enterprising.
What does it mean to be enterprising?
To be enterprising, one will need Energy, Need to Achieve Task-orientation, Empathy, Resourcefulness, Planning, Risk–taking, Innovation, Skills and Endurance. If you look carefully, you will notice that the first letters of these qualities, put together, spells ENTERPRISE.
- Energy – Working hard – and working smart – is essential in entrepreneurship. A great amount of both mental and physical energy is needed to be able to face all the challenges involved in providing solutions to issues and for the successful completion of projects. To sustain energy, entrepreneurs look for ways to stimulate the brain and the senses – sight, hearing, smell, touch, taste – so that they may be always alert in identifying what needs to be done in different situations. They also need to be healthy and fit, and this can be achieved through appropriate diet, exercise, and a healthy lifestyle.
- Need to achieve – The entrepreneur must be motivated to achieve success and accomplish all activities he wishes to engage in. His attitude and perceptiveness enable him to work towards acceptable results, whenever he sets out to do something. This approach enables him to work harder in achieving his goals.
- Task-orientation – The entrepreneur is convinced that to gain satisfying results, he must do his tasks very well and complete them on time. Efficiency, effectiveness, and time management are important aspects that enable the entrepreneur to complete requirements during the day. The entrepreneur must focus on results to be able to concentrate on whatever he sets out to do.
- Empathy – An entrepreneur must be able to put himself mentally in the position of the person or persons he wants to influence. He will want to feel what they are feeling, think what they are thinking. In the case of a business enterprise, the owner must be able to imagine how a potential customer would feel about his product or service.
- Resourcefulness – An entrepreneur must be able to provide the leadership and guidance needed to realize the enterprise. Identification, mobilization and effective utilization of the physical and non-physical resources needed in undertaking a venture are very important in setting up the business.
- Planning – To be able to see the total picture of the enterprise in terms of what needs to be done, how it will be done, who will do it and when, the entrepreneur must establish a written plan. This will help clarify the situation and permit decisions to be made as to whether to engage in activities that will result in an enterprise being set up or not. It is only careful planning that can ensure profits and prevent losses.
- Risk-taking – The decision to go ahead and start the enterprise or undertake related activities must be made by the entrepreneur. All enterprising men and women make this decision only after they have done some research, so that in the end they are actually able to achieve desired results. The entrepreneur will always have to take this first step, as it marks the difference between enterprising people and those who are not. Success begins with the decision to start moving in the right direction.
- Innovation – The entrepreneur must be able to apply new ideas that will enable him to undertake activities in new and creative ways. Through initiative, imagination, intuition and insight, an entrepreneur will be able to change things around or devise new ways of doing things for the improvement of the business. Information on different issues and topics is an important input for being innovative. Enterprising men and women therefore place great value on information; they are always alert and constantly engaging in research.
- Skills – Enterprising individuals have the ability and knowhow that enable them to undertake and complete activities. They need management, planning, networking, and communication skills, to mention a few. The entrepreneur should therefore evaluate the talents and skills that will enable him to put up and keep the enterprise going. Talents and skills have to be constantly practiced; otherwise, they can be forgotten and wasted.
- Endurance – There are many challenges to be faced when setting up and running a business. Women face specific challenges, such as gender discrimination and multiple roles as wife-mother-entrepreneur, some of which can be discouraging. To realize one’s goal to achieve desired rewards, one must be able to keep track of all transactions, despite the problems along the way. Patience, persistence, and confidence are some of the attitudes the entrepreneur will need to enable him to endure the physical and mental demands of becoming success in business.
Source: Windows to Entrepreneurship: A Teaching Guide (p. 54-55) published by the SERDEF, 2013
Photo: from University of Sheffield website