Most people seem to have a love/hate relationship with entrepreneurs. We all love the benefits of innovation and job creation. At the same time, we can’t help but feel a tinge of envy when we see a successful business man or woman fly around in a private jet, sipping their favourite “poison.”
Every week I speak with business owners from all around the world. They all tend to have a common thread – they feel misunderstood. Nobody really listens to them or tries to walk a mile in their shoes.
Being an entrepreneur myself, I feel media hardly shows appreciation for “our kind”. The public has a very skewed view of what it takes to succeed. This attitude shows in the way people treat entrepreneurs around them.
For this reason, I’ve decided to share 7 things you should know about the entrepreneurs you come across in your life. Enjoy!
#7 – He is lonelier than you think
Have you ever felt like you know a lot of people but have nobody to really talk to? This is very common amongst entrepreneurs.
Perhaps, that’s because entrepreneurship requires doing things that don’t appeal to “common sense “. Think back to Mercedes’ suggestion to build a horseless carriage, for instance.
The hardest part is that NOBODY sees your vision until it’s done – this applies even to those entrepreneurs who have supportive teams behind them.
Having a vision requires taking a stand for what you believe in. By default, it means that an entrepreneur will alienate people who believe the opposite, or simply do not share their passion.
In some cases, he is the only one who actually believes in the dream. Others either think he’s crazy or lazy ( in some ways both are actually true. )
Steve Jobs is a great example – people often found him frustrating and overly controlling. Heck, at one point he was fired from his own company. Well, if they could see what he did they’d probably just focus on getting the job done.
#6 – His struggle doesn’t make him unhappy
Let’s face it – most people will NEVER achieve any of their dreams and goals. Regardless of the reasons or excuses they give the fact remains – the vast majority ends up not doing whatever it takes to get what they want.
However, they think they know about success because they’ve seen “The Pursuit of Happiness”, watched some motivational videos on YouTube, and read self-help books. But they’ve never pulled the trigger and fought for their passion.
I remember a bank manager telling me “I feels sorry for business owners and entrepreneurs. They have so many challenges they have to face.” What he doesn’t understand is that the challenge is what makes if fun!
The number of uphill battles an entrepreneur has to fight doesn’t daunt him at all. He’s fully aware that the narrow path tends to lead to the treasure. Those battles are just part and parcel of being successful.
What’s really hard is dealing with all the people who come at you with “wisdom” and “common sense”.
So please, don’t think you need to feel bad for the entrepreneurs you know. Don’t say stuff like “If this was possible someone else would have done it.” Or “You’ve tried for so long, don’t you think you should give up?”
Here is the worst one of all -“Why don’t you just get a real job” (urgggggggghhhhhhhhhh!)
Speaking of which…
#5 – “I don’t want a ‘real f**king job!!!’”
If you want to annoy me, tell me to get a real job. It’s hard enough explaining exactly what you do ( “If you develop software why do you have to do marketing?”). It’s tough trying to build your dream in a world that only rewards you AFTER you succeed.
First of all, if I get a “real job”, people on my team will lose their “real jobs”. Secondly, the job you work at was created by someone just like me – another entrepreneur.
(SIDE NOTE: Occasionally ( very rarely ) and entrepreneur may take on a temporary job to raise capital or to get through bad times. But those are the only exceptions. )
Thirdly, I DON’T WANT a F**KING JOB! If that’s what I wanted, that’s what I’d do!
#4 – It’s hard for him to watch you fail.
Entrepreneurs tend to take self-development very seriously. In effect, they come across many useful techniques/strategies that could make your life way easier.
As soon as there is any sign of trouble the entrepreneur’s mind goes into problem-solving mode . So if you come to him with something that bothers you, his instant reaction is to think of possibilities that could turn the situation around.
So when your entrepreneur friend tries to give you advice, he’s not trying to be a smart ass – he’s trying to be helpful. Yes, it can be annoying, to be fair. But his intentions are good.
And the advice might actually work.
#3 – It’s not just about the money
Most people start a business because they got fired, tired ( of their boss/job) or because of a burning passion. Yes, a business has to make money. No, that’s not the main/only reason why entrepreneurs do what they do.
First of all, most business owners are chronically unemployable. They can’t stand taking B.S. from a frustrated moron just because he’s a manager.
Many of them (us?) choose to make less money for a loooong time rather than get a higher paying job.
They don’t just want to make money – they want to build something of value to the world. But of course, entrepreneurs don’t complain when they get rich in the process…
#2 – He’s human – just like you
I’m not sure how to explain this one.
You may think that entrepreneurs are some kind of magical creatures who know how to make money appear. Well, besides that special ability, every business owner is simply human. ( just like you, assuming you’re not some sort of alien.)
They listen to music, eat good food, fall in love, enjoy good sex, watch movies, and play with their kids. Some are good people, some are not.
The point is, every successful person I know wishes for someone who understands and just wants to connect. Business owners are not walking wallets or deities that do not defecate.
#1 – He IS going to make it…
…sooner or later. Perseverance, is possibly the most important entrepreneurial character trait. Those who keep on going, get to their destinations.
If anybody knows how to persevere it’s entrepreneurs.
And he needs you to know that. Because, if you’re not there during the hard times, don’t expect to be there during the good times. It’s really interesting to watch old “friends” come out of the woodwork when the smell a bit of success.
It’s even more fun telling them to f**k off.
So if you want to enjoy the fruits of the entrepreneurial labour, trials, and tribulations either become one, or give as much support as you can to the entrepreneur you know.
Otherwise, you’ll forever be hunted be life-draining regret that makes you cry:”If only I tried…”
Here is your assignment: go hug an entrepreneur. If you are one yourself, go to the mirror and give yourself a big kiss.
Hopefully, the world will share this article ( you should share it now!) and start giving some love to those great minds who move our society forward.