What Is An Entrepreneur?
To answer the question 'What is an entrepreneur?' we first must understand the definition of entrepreneur.
According to the Oxford American Dictionary.
|Definition of Entrepreneur: An entrepreneur is a person that organizes and operates a business or businesses, taking on greater than normal financial risk in order to do so.|
Did the last part of the definition scare you... The part about taking on greater than normal financial risk?
Do you want to read any further? If you answered ‘No’, I understand. I hate to tell you this; you are not ready to be an entrepreneur. The first characteristic of an entrepreneur is courage.
Courage & Perseverance
|Definition of Courage: the ability to do something that frightens one.|
Courage is what makes you capable of facing extreme danger and difficulty without retreating. It implies not only bravery and a dauntless spirit but the ability to endure in times of adversity.
It is through the first action of courage and the continuing action of perseverance that a person becomes successful.
|Definition of Perseverance: steadfastness in doing something despite difficulty or delay in achieving success.|
What makes a person have courage? Are they born with more courage than others? Do they have a smaller or larger brain? Are they stronger? None of these questions lead to the answer. The truth to courage is believing in something that is more important than what you are about to risk.
What made the soldiers of the American Civil War stand on the front lines directly in the line of fire of their enemy. It was the belief in the cause. These men were willing to fight and give their lives for what they believed was right.
The Confederacy of States (Confederates) believed a central government should not have the final decision on issues such as taxation, commerce of products, and slavery. The Confederates economy depended on the labor of slaves. Whereas the United States (Union) opposed slavery and believed a central government should make the final decision on issues of taxation and commerce of products.
Whom or what is worth risking your life?
For me it is being involved in the nurturing and education of my daughter. Being able to parent and spend a significant amount of time with her is more important than a 50 to 60 hour work week paying $79,000 a year. I want to raise her up knowing God, so when she gets older she will not depart from him (Proverbs 22:6). I am devoted to giving her the love, time, tools and skills she needs to become profitable in her adult life. Even if that means giving up my job and becoming an entrepreneur to have control of my time. It will be done.
Here is a quote from Oprah Winfrey.
|"As you become more clear about who you really are, you'll be better able to decide what is best for you - the first time around." - Oprah Winfrey|
Who are you... what do you want... how do you want to improve your community?
If you think long enough you will remember a moment of courage. A point in time when you faced your fear for a higher cause.
What is your cause for wanting to be an entrepreneur?
I will warn you. To be rich is typically not a strong enough cause. Money is the reward for great work, so in return you can help more people with your business.
If you only seek money, then you are no better than the bank robbers or the crooked executives of companies. You will end up destroying more lives than helping.
What is more important than money? Is it your time, your family, your health, or something else?
What do you care about more than yourself? What irritates you the most? What problems do you want to solve in life? What do you dream about on a regular basis? What idea excites you?
How do you want people to remember you?
If you do not know your cause I want to help you find it. In the next chapter, characteristics of an entrepreneur, I have an exercise to help find your cause.
Now lets continue to understand the definition of entrepreneur so you can become one.
|Definition of Entrepreneur: An entrepreneur is a person that organizes and operates a business or businesses, taking on greater than normal financial risk in order to do so.|
The next key word to what is an entrepreneur is organizes.
Why is organizing so important?
What does organizing mean to an entrepreneur?
Well, let’s look at the Merriam Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary definition of organize to lead us to these answers.
|Definition of Organize: to arrange people or things in relation to each other according to a particular sequence, pattern, or method.|
Hmmm... lets read that again. “to arrange people or things in relation to each other according to a particular sequence, pattern or method.”
Well if you have a great idea that you want to turn into a business, you are probably wondering how do I get started. You may think, what do I need... who do I need to talk to... how will I make the product... how will I receive payment... when will I have time to do all of the things required to turn this idea into a product?
The list of questions go on and on. When you have the answer to one question another question might pop up. So what do I need to get started... How do I organize my thoughts to make it happen?
Profitable people are great at organizing their thoughts and turning them into a value that people want.
So let’s look at the definition of an entrepreneur and re-arrange or substitute the word organizes with the definition of organize. Let’s see how it sounds.
|Definition of Entrepreneur (amplified): An entrepreneur is a person that arranges people or things in relation to each other according to a particular sequence, pattern, or method; and operates a business or businesses, taking on greater than normal financial risk in order to do so.|
So what must an entrepreneur be able to do?
The ability to develop a plan that arranges people and systems to generate your idea.
Did the light bulb come on?!
All profitable entrepreneurs have a successful plan that guides them from start to finish. It is called a business plan.
The business plan is a systematic document that explains how you will arrange people and things to generate your idea.
Oh Yea!! So where do you start? With a business plan.
So let’s simplify the definition of entrepreneur with this new found information.
|Definition of Entrepreneur (simplified): An entrepreneur is a person that plans and operates a business or businesses, taking on greater than normal financial risk in order to do so.|
Wow... that is much easier to understand. Don’t you agree?
Let’s further simplify the definition by replacing “taking on greater than normal financial risk in order to do so” with courage and perseverance.
|Definition of Entrepreneur (simplified v.2): An entrepreneur is a person that plans and operates a business or businesses, with courage and perseverance.|
Whoa... are you starting to see the answer to what is an entrepreneur?
Ok... hold on we are not done yet. We have one more key word to understand what is an entrepreneur.
What is meant by operates?
Do you know the definition of operate?
Maybe... lets make sure
|Definition of Operate: control the function of|
“Control!” Remember Janet Jackson’s number one song “Control” in 1986. If you don’t remember or haven’t heard it in a while click play below.
Read the lyrics on Lyrics Freak
Wow!! Wasn’t that powerful?!
Did you listen to the song?
Thank you Janet. I’m going to take CONTROL Of MY LIFE, MY BUSINESS, MY FINANCES, MY FAMILY!! BooYa!!
I am excited... are you?
Let’s amplify the entrepreneur definition again with what we just learned about the word operate.
|Definition of Entrepreneur (amplified v.2): An entrepreneur is a person that plans and controls the function of a business or businesses, with courage and perseverance.|
Yes, Yes, Yes... It is starting to come together. Are you starting to understand your role of an entrepreneur?
If someone asks you the question “What is an entrepreneur?”... Can you confidently answer them?
“Controls the function” is very important to grasp. You are not planning to perform the daily tasks of your business by yourself. You are planning to control the people you hire and or the organizations you contract to run these daily tasks. It is your responsibility to understand the tasks that are required by developing a detailed plan.
In other words you are taking on the financial risk so why should you work like a slave for the rest of your life. Yes, in the beginning you will be more involved in the daily tasks. But if you have a great business plan, you will enjoy the rewards of seeing your business profits grow. And so will everyone else that has helped you turn your idea into a profitable product or service.
Before you go too far in talking about profits; always remember to thank God. For God is the one that has provided you with your resources. It is a must to give a tenth of your profits to God; to show your gratitude. This amount was established by Abraham, reference Genesis 14 and Hebrews 7:1-9 of the holy bible.
Profits and Righteousness
As a coach that wants you to succeed as an entrepreneur and a member of the body of Christ, I want to warn you. Just giving a tenth of your profits because it is written is not the important part. How you give it and why - that is what God wants. Jesus, our lord and savior explains this in Matthew 23:23
and Luke 11:41-42
I’m sorry if you are thinking, "What does God have to do with what is an entrepreneur."
God has everything to do with it. As creator of heaven and earth and us, he defines everything. I truly want to see you profitable, it is my duty to tell you the truth. I will share with you books from profitable entrepreneurs and authors that mention the role of their spiritual connection with God and their wealth. But first I want to review a few more scriptures that God revealed to me during my study of wealth. What God expects from us in order to be accepted in his kingdom of heaven.
Jesus explains what it takes to please him in Matthew 25:14 - 46 and it is repeated again in Luke 19:11-27.
|Matthew 25:14-30 (New English Translation)|
|14 “For it is like a man going on a journey, who summoned his slaves and entrusted his property to them. |
15 To one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one, each according to his ability. Then he went on his journey.
16 The one who had received five talents went off right away and put his money to work and gained five more. 17 In the same way, the one who had two gained two more.
18 But the one who had received one talent went out and dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money in it.
19 After a long time, the master of those servants came and settled his accounts with them.
20 The one who had received the five talents came and brought five more, saying, ‘Sir, you entrusted me with five talents. See, I have gained five more.’ 21 His master answered, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful in a few things. I will put you in charge of many things. Enter in to the joy of your master.’
22 The one with two talents also came and said, ‘Sir, you entrusted two talents to me. See, I have gained two more.’ 23 His master answered, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things. I will put you in charge of many things. Enter into the joy of your master.’
24 Then the one who had received the one talent came and said, ‘Sir, I knew that your were a hard man, harvesting where you did not sow, and gathering where you did not scatter seed, 25 so I was afraid, and I went and hid your talent in the ground. See, you have what is yours.‘
26 But his master answered, ‘Evil and lazy servant! So you knew that I harvest where I didn’t sow and gather where I didn’t scatter? 27 Then you should have deposited my money with the bankers, and on my return I would have received my money with interest!
28 Therefore take the talent from him and give it to the one who has ten. 29 For the one who has will be given more, and he will have more than enough. But the one who does not have, even what he has will be taken from him.
30 And throw that worthless servant in the outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’”
Whoa. That is deep. Did you get that?
God expects us to be profitable with what he gives us. Jesus has left to prepare a kingdom for us and when he returns he is going to want to know what we did with the money he gave us. If we fail to increase what he has given us by being afraid or lazy, then we should not expect the good things God has in store for us. However, for those that gained more will be given more and allowed to enter into the gates of heaven.
You might be thinking what about the evil rich people that have made money by stealing, cheating, or by mistreating their employees. Well Jesus, has provided and answer to this question, in Matthew 25:31 - 46.
|Matthew 25:31-46 (New English Translation)|
|31 “When the Son of Man comes in his glory and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne. |
32 All the nations will be assembled before him, and he will separate people one form another like a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33 He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.
34 Then the king will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. 35 For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36 I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.’
37 Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or naked and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’
40 And the king will answer them, ‘I tell you the truth, just as you did it for one of the least of these brothers or sisters of mine, you did it for me.’
41 “Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you accursed, into the eternal fire that has been prepared for the devil and his angels! 42 For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave nothing to drink. 43 I was a stranger and you did not receive me as a guest, naked and you did not clothe me, sick and in prison you did not visit me.’
44 Then they too will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not give you whatever you needed?’
45 Then he will answer them, ‘I tell you the truth, just as you did no do it for one of the least of these, you did not do it for me.’
46 And these will depart into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”
Now are you seeing the importance of being profitable and living righteously?
Your after-life depends on it.
I will leave it up to you to read Luke 19:11-27, for further confirmation and to increase your spiritual knowledge of what is expected to enter the kingdom of heaven that Jesus has prepared for us.
Now back to the definition of entrepreneur. There is still something missing. Knowing what we just learned about how God expects us to be profitable and righteous; it is not stated in the definition.
Profit and righteousness should be included. Do you agree?
How should we phrase it?
|Definition of Entrepreneur (amplified v.3): An entrepreneur is a righteous person that plans and controls the function of a profitable business or businesses, with courage and perseverance.|
Wow! Now that is a definition of a true entrepreneur.
Let’s insert our key characteristic words back into the definition.
|Definition of Entrepreneur: An entrepreneur is a righteous person that organizes and operates a profitable business or businesses, with courage and perseverance.|
You now have a working definition of entrepreneur. The definition includes six key characteristics of an entrepreneur.
If someone comes to you and says “What is an entrepreneur?”
Your reply would be either, “Ahh, I don’t know. I read it somewhere.”
or you will remember and say,
|"An entrepreneur is a righteous person that organizes and operates a profitable business or businesses, with courage and perseverance."|
or you can give them the amplified version if they look puzzled;
|"An entrepreneur is a righteous person that plans and controls the function of a profitable business or businesses, with courage and perseverance."|
Now you have an actionable definition to incorporate into your life and to share with others.
You have the 6 key characteristics of an entrepreneur.
Before you move on to the entrepreneurs assessment test. Please read the 'Entrepreneurs Credo' written by Thomas Paine in 1776. It is a poetic answer to the question "What is An Entrepreneur?"
|Like an eagle, I choose to soar to the highest heights for a view unknown by the vast majority of others. |
I do not choose to be a common person. It is my right to be uncommon.
I seek opportunity, not security.
I do not wish to be a kept citizen, humbled and dulled - By having the state look after me.
I want to take the calculated risk; to dream and to build, to fall and to succeed.
I refuse to barter incentive for a dole;
I prefer the challenges of life to the guaranteed existence; the thrill of fulfillment to the stale calm of Utopia.
Does this credo ring true to you?
If not don't worry? Poetry is not for everyone.
Maybe some of these quotes from
will ring true to you.
1. Oxford American Dictionary
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