Riverside CA News

Marketing Consultant /Franchise Owner of Sylvan Learning Center of Murrieta, CA.

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Ever meet someone so successful in their field of business that it seems like they were born to do it? Some individuals make the entrepreneur life look so effortless that you start to wonder if it's in their DNA. For years, the question of whether successful entrepreneurs carry something special in their genes that gives them the edge over other people has been on the minds of thought leaders, scholars and industry authorities. While many believe that Elon Musk, for instance, had a soft landing upon entering the business scene, others argue that genes have nothing to do with it. I believe the simple answer to the age-old question is that entrepreneurs are made, not born. Here's why.

Unlike other fields like sports that require an inborn physical talent and endurance, entrepreneurship is just a series of good decisions backed by hard work. To become successful, entrepreneurs need education (not necessarily formal) and experience. Those things are not qualities people are born with. We've all heard stories of how a big company was run into the ground by the children of the original owners. Others didn’t inherit a business and weren't born into wealth, but started from scratch and figured out how to build a successful business. This raises the question: If entrepreneurs are not born with the innate ability to run and sustain a business, how do some do it so effortlessly while others struggle?

Innovation

The simple answer is that good entrepreneurs are innovative. To be a successful entrepreneur, an individual must be able to locate a problem and offer innovative solutions to that problem. Problem solving is a skill that everyone is born with; entrepreneurs have just learned how to leverage the opportunities that arise as a result of those problems. Innovation, however, is not something a person is born with; rather, it is a quality nurtured through leveraging opportunities. Because successful entrepreneurs develop the ability to maximize their potential, they tend to end up with the best-case scenario most of the time. What keeps most entrepreneurs in business is the ability to keep developing new strategies. Without innovation, an entrepreneur will lose their touch, and that's it for the business. Each year, for instance, Apple Inc. releases a new model of iPhone, iPad or Mac. This means that the company has researchers working round the clock to be able to meet consumer expectations. If the company ever decided to make cuts to its RD department, new models would stop being produced at the same pace or with the same amount of attention, which would lead to consumers losing interest in the new products and eventually, the old products dying a natural death. This is how many companies fail and why innovation is key to entrepreneurship. 

Experience

Another quality that separates successful entrepreneurs from others is experience. Humans learn from past experiences, making them better able to control the outcome when they experience situations a second time. Almost all great things were born out of trial and error; we wouldn't even have many of the medicines we use today if scientists hadn't tried and failed multiple times. The axiom "Experience is the best teacher" is very accurate when you talk about entrepreneurship. Many entrepreneurs transition from employees and the experience they bring with them gives them an edge in the business world. Other entrepreneurs who didn't gain experience by working as an employee had to learn through other forms of mentorship. Of course, whether you have previous experience or not, mistakes will be made. What separates successful entrepreneurs is their ability to turn mistakes into teachable moments and not make the same mistake again — and that's what I mean by experience.

Knowledge

A third quality that reinforces the idea that entrepreneurs are made, not born is knowledge. Knowledge is not an innate ability; it is acquired from education. As mentioned earlier, "education" does not necessarily mean formal as there are people who have become successful in business without a formal education. When you meet and chat with a successful entrepreneur, you quickly find out that they have an in-depth knowledge of how their business works, trends in their sector, competitors and other related topics. Apart from the day-to-day running of their business, entrepreneurs are also sometimes called upon to talk on podcasts, talk shows, retreats and other forums. People seek them out because of the knowledge they possess about their business. So even though some of these entrepreneurs lack degrees from Ivy League schools, they have developed in-depth knowledge through self-guided education. This knowledge helps them make better decisions for their business and leads to them being sources of information for others.

In conclusion, success in any field of life is not due to inborn traits. Rather it is achieved through experiences, knowledge and passion. The same goes for business. Entrepreneurs are not marked from birth; they are people who made a series of good decisions in their businesses and lives. Therefore, entrepreneurs are not born; they are made.

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