No 1. Trait – a bias towards action.
There is a lot of truth to the above comment made by ‘Simon’ on one of my previous posts.
If entrepreneurship is all about action then being entrepreneurial is all about the quantity and quality of the action taken. Yes, it’s important to do. And it’s important to do well.
What do I mean by well? How we are/what we’re being affects the outcome of our actions.
My colleague, the amazing Anne Moellering (20 year SV start up marketing veteran, Stanford MBA), and I ran our first Stoke Factory workshop on Friday. Stoke Factory is all about fanning the flames of entrepreneurial endeavor.
It’s important to us to connect the being of entrepreneurship with the doing. We hold that how we show up as entrepreneurs is essential to the success of our actions.
A simple example of this is recruiting a great team – a critical component of a successful start up. Try doing that without ‘being passionate’ about your vision. It will be a slog. And that’s the point. What you’re being affects how easy it is to succeed in what you are doing.
So, with that in mind, Anne and I developed 8 ‘being’ and 8 ‘doing’ metrics for entrepreneurs. It was an extremely tough exercise….
Here are our final 8 ‘being’ metrics:
Other candidates that nearly made the final 8:
- willing to fail, resilient, flexible, open-minded
(represented by ‘courageous’, ‘agile’ and ‘tenacious’)
- curious, inquisitive (very hard to leave out – somewhat represented by ‘knowledgeable’)
- decisive, autonomous (on our doing wheel as ‘decide’)
- creative (doing)
- honest (related to ‘authentic’)
- persuasive, visionary, a leader (a combination of most of the above traits)
- motivated (motivation is the result of passion/purpose, autonomy, mastery and relatedness)
- focused (there’s a lot of evidence to support this and a lot of contradictory evidence)
We left the following traits commonly associated with entrepreneurship out because we believe they’re unhelpful:
- risk-taking (gambling)
- fearless (courage is feeling fear and doing it anyway – having no fears means you’re a robot or insane)
- unemotional (see above)
- aggressive (maybe helpful in the corporate world but so much of entrepreneurship is building relationships)
What do you think? What is it most important to be in order to succeed as an entrepreneur?