Characteristics of Entrepreneurship - Business Online

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Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Characteristics of Entrepreneurship

Characteristics of Entrepreneurship
Characteristics of Entrepreneurship

Understanding the Fundamentals of Entrepreneurship
Starting your own business can be an exciting and rewarding experience. It offers numerous advantages like being your own boss, setting your own schedule, and making a
living doing something you enjoy.

Characteristics of Entrepreneurship
But entrepreneurship also brings with it a variety of challenges. In this first objective, we
will discuss:

• The characteristics of an entrepreneur,
• Coming up with a business idea, and
• Assessing the market opportunity 

Becoming a successful entrepreneur requires sound planning, creativity, and hard work, and it also involves taking risks, because all businesses require some form of investmentusually time or money.

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To begin evaluating whether launching your own business is right for you, consider some of the following common characteristics that are typical of successful small business owners:

Innovation and Creativity: The first step to starting a business is to come up with an idea or concept. It takes innovation to develop a product or service that brings value to customers that they can’t get elsewhere. Additionally, entrepreneurs often have to find creative ways to tackle everyday business problems like suppliers shipping inventory late and ineffective marketing plans.

Persistence and Resiliency: Businesses, like all things, take time to grow. Very few people will produce mass amounts of profit within just weeks or even months of being in business. There will be things that you fail at, even if your business is successful. Inevitably, some projects fail for a variety of reasons--poor planningcompetitors offering better options, market timing or other factors. To be a successful entrepreneur you need to learn and grow from your mistakes to move forward. You must be able to live with uncertainty and overcome obstacles that you didn’t anticipate.

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Flexibility: Even the best thought out business plans will change along the way. Changes in the market, technology, and customer tastes are going to happen and they’re out of your control. Your ability to be flexible and respond to these changes will be the key to your business’s survival.
Passion: As you’ve probably realized, entrepreneurship is not easy. If you are not passionate about what you’re doing, it will be much harder to persist through all of the challenges that come your way. Your customers will also notice, it’s harder to sell something you’re not passionate about yourself. Mollie BreaultBinaghi, who was named Vermont’s Young Entrepreneur of the Year in 2011 by the SBA, said it best: “You have to be passionate about it. Otherwise, it’s not worth doing. Owning your own business is not easy and it’s not going to make you rich quick. You’re going to be in it for the long haul so it’s got to be something you love.”

Other characteristics that are helpful to an entrepreneur are persuasiveness, self-confidence, and being visionary. While it’s not essential you have all of these qualities,
it’s a good idea to think about them and determine if entrepreneurship is really right for you.

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Coming up with a Business Idea
Do you already have a business idea? Coming up with your idea is the first step to entrepreneurship. Consider these questions:
What are you interested in?
Often times, the best ideas come from doing what you enjoy most - which is why personal passions or hobbies often lead to rewarding businesses. Do you have a special talent or skill that could be an idea generator? Even minor interests can
lead to innovation.

What do you have to offer? 
In addition to doing what you enjoy, ask yourself what aspects of your work do you do well and what you don't do so well. Knowing what you can offer and in which areas you excel are essential to building a business.

What do you want?
One of the most important considerations when planning a business is pinpointing what you want to get out of it. Whether it's making money, working with and creating something you’re passionate about, or just being your own boss - it’s important to know whether your business idea will give you the life you want.

What are the current market and consumer trends?
Successful entrepreneurs are always on the lookout for new opportunities in the market. While these ideas don't always have to stem from what you already do, it certainly helps if you can combine what's hot with your existing know-how,
expertise, or passion in life.

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Assessing the Market Opportunity
If you’ve determined what your idea will be and you’d like to move forward with the entrepreneurial process, you’ll need to do some preliminary market research to assess the viability of your idea. To run a successful business, you need to do some market research to learn about your customers, your competitors, and your industry. Market research is the process of analyzing data to help you understand which products and services are in demand, and how to be competitive.

Some tips to get you started on assessing your competition and your market:

Determine your Target Market and understand your Customer

A common mistake with new business owners is assuming that if the business owner would buy the product, everyone else will as well. You need to know what potential customers want, what price they are willing to pay, how they decide what to buy, and where they buy it. Think seriously about who your potential customers are and start defining their demographics, including age, education level, geographic location, and income level.

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Use customer reviews on sites such as Yelp,, and to take a look at the customer reviews posted about businesses or products similar to your
idea. This information can provide valuable insight into why a customer chooses one business or product over another. Don’t forget to research complementary and substitute products. These are products that are normally sold with (complementary) or instead of (substitute) your product.

As you develop your business idea, don’t forget to talk directly to potential customers; these can be family, friends, and complete strangers. See how they react to your idea.
Would they buy your product? Ask them what elements are important to them, whether it’s the price, quality, reputation in the industry, or something else.

Get to Know Your Competition
It's very rare that any two businesses are exactly the same, which makes it a good idea to get to know, and even network with, your competition in person. The rewards can include
referrals (if you offer something that they do not) or if they are unable to take on additional customers, or even a joint venture.

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Use the web to conduct a search on popular business listings in your market. Assess how your offerings compare to your competitors. What do you offer that is unique? How can
you work that into your marketing plan to set you apart from the competition? Is your competition only local (for example, with an auto repair shop) or is it global (any products that can be shipped or services that can be done remotely can get to your customers from anywhere in the world)? Use SBA’s Size Up Tool to initiate your search for local competitors.

Understand your industry
You will need to know what others in your industry are doing, even if they are not your direct competitors. Trade Associations, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission
filings, and your local Chamber of Commerce are good places to start. Look up the North American Industry Classification System code for your industry and use that to
focus your search. Use the internet to find reports and analysis of your industry. This will help you see if experts are predicting a downward or upward trend, any new laws, and regulations that you have to conform to and ascertain the general feelings toward your industry.

There are several free government resources that can help you conduct marketing research. The US Census Bureau,, and the Bureau of Labor Statistics are good places to get started. Remember, there is no one market research source that will answer all of your questions, so you’ll need to get information from multiple sources.

Additionally, market research is essential to the ongoing success of your business even after you start. You should never stop learning about your customers, competition, or
industry; they are constantly changing.

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Which of the following are essential to Assessing Your Market?
    a) Knowing what potential customers want
    b) Investigating your competition
    c) Understanding industry trends
    d) All of the above

The correct answer is All of the above:

You will need to know your potential customers’ wants, investigate and evaluate your competition, and understand industry trends before you decide if your business idea is

That was a lot of information. Becoming a young entrepreneur can seem daunting, but the information presented in this course should help you succeed.

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In this course, we:
    • Described the fundamentals of entrepreneurship,  including the characteristics that are typical of successful small business owners, how to come up with your business idea, and how to assess the market for your idea.
    • We also identified different options for doing business that is ideal for young entrepreneurs, such as online businesses, working from home, freelancing, and franchising.
    • We provided the first steps to starting your business by stressing the importance of defining success and creating meaningful steps in your business plan. We provided ideas about how to finance your venture, including possible financing options depending on your situation. We defined the three common small business structures your business may fit under. We finished up by giving you the four-steps required to register your business.
    • Finally, we provided information about accessing entrepreneurial support resources such as finding and working with a mentor; or accessing free online training and information. We also described various in-person resources available from the Small Business Administration and its resource partners all over the United States and its territories. 

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