Own it, make it, change it — you have the skills to be an entrepreneur
Silicon Valley isn’t the only place where ‘entrepeneur’ is a buzzword. According to a recent study using data from the popular career-building site Monster.com, 32 percent of generation Y participants consider themselves entrepreneurs, versus 41 percent of generation X-ers and 45 percent of baby boomers. According to a recent study by the Kauffman Foundation, 54 percent of millenials either want to start a business or have already started one, making them the “entrepreneurship generation.”
Regardless of age, anyone can be an entrepreneur and should have an entrepreneurial mindset towards their careers. You need to be accountable for yourself and make things happen instead of relying on others. Here are some tips to wake your entrepreneurial spirit:
1. Be an ‘intra’-preneur first
An intrapreneur is a person who acts like an entrepreneur within a company, taking advantage of projects and opportunities that go beyond the tasks in their job description. As an intrapreneur, you can stand out very easily because you take on projects that no one has thought of before. If the project fails, you still took a risk, met new people and hopefully learned from your mistakes, which can all be leveraged into your next venture.
2. Build a strong team
You can’t do it alone, so don’t even try. Recognize what your strengths and weaknesses are and recruit people who can help balance you. By collaborating and brainstorming with a team, you’re better able to solve problems and make things happen faster.
3. Learn how to sell
All successful entrepreneurs have sales skills. You need to be able to sell your ideas, your brand and your products. If you can’t influence other people to make buying or investing decisions, then you can’t have a business.
4. Have a plan but be open to change
If you don’t have a plan, and goals, then it’s very hard to not only measure success but head in the right direction. You also have to be able to adapt to change and be open to changing your business model because you might not know who your customers are and what exact product they want from you.
Dan Schawbel is the author of the upcoming book, Promote Yourself: The New Rules For Career Success (St. Martin’s Press, Sept 3rd). Listen to his Promote Yourself Podcast on iTunes for more career advice.