If you feel you have what it takes to be a successful entrepreneur, just know that there are areas that will test your faith, strength, and will-power.
Being an entrepreneur means having the courage to risk it all for a chance to achieve your dreams. But while dreams are free, it costs effort to make them real. That is where the real work comes in.
What does it really take to be an entrepreneur?
What you think could very well lead you down the wrong path.
Here are 6 beliefs that are dead wrong, according to serial entrepreneur Bill Aulet, a lecturer at the MIT Sloan School of Management who has raised more than $100 million in funding for his companies.
Myth 1: Entrepreneurs are born that way.
Though some may believe it, we are not born with an entrepreneurship gene. Now, we may beg to differ since the media’s images and messages have been spoon-feeding that idea to us for ages. However, there are certain things that can tip the odds of being successful in our favor.
"There are concrete skills that increase the odds of entrepreneurial success, such as management, sales, and product conception. These skills can be taught and learned," Aulet says. "So don't let yourself be dazzled by the so-called entrepreneurship gene. This gene has not been and will not be found."
Myth 2: Individuals start companies.
Thinking that they can go at it alone, many entrepreneurs jump in feet first and figure it out along the way. It may very well start out that way, but most successful business have the backing of a great, diversified team.
"Teams start companies," Aulet says. "And a bigger team can often increase the odds of success."
By putting together a “dream team” that combines talents, skills, and know-how will increase a new company's chances to grow and thrive.
Myth 3: Entrepreneurs are super-smart.
Most likely, one will not find an entrepreneur who was head of his or her class. However, what you will find within a successful entrepreneur’s persona is “focus and dedication.”
‘They tend to focus on something that deeply fascinates them and then go into hyperfocus mode,” Aulet mentions.
Myth 4: Entrepreneurs need charisma to succeed.
Sure it helps to have charisma, a nice personality, and a genuine love for people, but it takes more than a smile to make it as an entrepreneur.
"More than charisma, successful entrepreneurs exhibit vision, systematic thinking, strong analytic skills, and a blend of humility and ambition," Aulet says. “Charisma by itself,'' he adds, “is no recipe for success”.
Myth 5: Entrepreneurs are undisciplined.
Like some, entrepreneurs love to have a great time, but that doesn’t mean that they don’t know when, where, and how to buckle down.
"Successful entrepreneurs must have extreme self-discipline because they have few resources, no reputation, and a very finite amount of time in which to succeed," Aulet says. "Entrepreneurs are the attackers against the 'defenders'--established companies. They have to have the spirit of a pirate with the execution skills of a Navy SEAL."
Myth 6: Entrepreneurs are in love with risk.
Being willing to gamble and take risks that others may be more hesitant to pursue, entrepreneurs are often known for taking a walk on the wild side. They don’t take just any type of risk though -- entrepreneurs are calculated movers.
"Great entrepreneurs prefer intelligent risk-taking," Aulet says. "They maneuver to remove as much risk as possible and only take calculated risks where they feel they have an advantage and can influence the outcome."