The 5 Levels Of Entrepreneurial Mindsets
Posted on August 25, 2013 01:00 pm under Entrepreneurs, Management
An entrepreneur is a businessperson who not only conceives and organizes ventures but also frequently takes risks in doing so. Not all independent business people are true entrepreneurs, and not all entrepreneurs are created equal. – ActionCOACH
VENTURES AFRICA – Today’s post is a
little academic as it is a result of a few of my entrepreneurial based
research reading embarked upon in the last couple of weeks. Among my
study materials, I found thoughts shared on the above by ActionCOACH (the world’s number 1 business coaching franchise) very profound. Stay with me to learn from this post.
As a form of introduction, an
entrepreneur is a businessperson who not only conceives and organizes
ventures but also frequently takes risks in doing so. Not all
independent business people are true entrepreneurs, and not all
entrepreneurs are created equal.
Different degrees or levels of
entrepreneurial intensity and drive depend upon how much independence
one exhibits, the level of leadership and innovation they demonstrate,
how much responsibility they shoulder, and how creative they become in
envisioning and executing their business plans.
Brad Sugars of ActionCOACH, identifies the following five different types or levels of entrepreneurial mindsets, patterns of thinking, and belief systems.
They begin with the basic level of the
employee – and an understanding that good employees often evolve into
great entrepreneurs but that to become an entrepreneur one has to first
adopt a perspective and seek out a role above and beyond that of an
The employee sets goals mainly to
impress others. Because of self-imposed limitations, employees prefer to
follow someone else’s game plan, and they lack the desire to become a
self-motivated and self-reliant entrepreneur. They focus primarily on
personal security and their emotional motivation derives from a fear of
insecurity and a desire to be within the comfort zone of a secure
Those who want a greater sense of
responsibility and control over their lives and have the confidence to
experiment with that possibility often rise up from the ground level of
employee status to the first level of entrepreneurship. They do this by
Level One: The Self-Employed Mindset
The emotional driving force behind the
self-employed person is not security but a desire for greater control
over his or her life, career, and destiny. Relinquishing that control to
a boss every day from nine to five is not their idea of happiness, and
they believe that they could do their job just as well without an
employer – and perhaps without the need for other employees. They want
more autonomy. They want to do things their own way. And they usually
begin by creating a situation where they do the same type of work they
did while an employee, but they figure out how to do it by themselves
and for themselves.
Level Two: The Managerial Perspective
Those with a managerial outlook are
often in a great position to succeed as entrepreneurs, managers who
become leaders succeed because they accept the challenge and
responsibility of ensuring that others under their wings also succeed
By getting the most out of employees,
managers themselves are able to delegate aspects of their business to
others and set higher goals. Those who say they can’t find good
employees usually mean they lack what it takes to attract or create good
employees – and as a consequence they also lack what it takes to
succeed as an entrepreneur. But those who not only manage but also lead
can rise to the next level and become owner/leaders – one step closer to
the real definition of an entrepreneur.
Level Three: The Attitude of Owner/Leader
The entrepreneur who attains the level
of an owner/leader enjoys remarkable benefits by knowing how to step
aside and let the business – and those employees working in it – operate
as a profit center not reliant upon the owner’s constant hands-on
participation. This kind of entrepreneur has created an organization
that is more self-sufficient and self-sustaining, and by doing so has
created more wealth, personal freedom, and free time.
Rather than being the only person who
could get the job done the best, this leader has passed that torch of
responsibility and expertise along to others who now enjoy for
themselves a greater level of career achievement. The owner/leader can
therefore focus not so much on sales and revenues, but on net profits.
While the business continues to run smoothly – and generate more
transactions – the owner/leader concentrates on fine tuning it for
increased profitability while letting others handle the day-to-day
Level Four: The Entrepreneurial Investor
With a business that generates profits,
the entrepreneur who has succeeded this far can begin to accept another
exciting challenge, that of managing money so that it works to produce
more money. Investing for maximum returns involves smart leverage of
assets, and the entrepreneurial investor will often leverage the success
of the first business to create a second or third company based on the
same model or system.
By franchising the original venture or
buying other healthy businesses, the investor can get into the career of
not just selling basic products and services, but of selling entire
businesses. The goal, of course, is still to turn a profit. So rather
than remaining at the helm of these companies the investor will buy
them, ensure that they have valuable equity or attractive allure and
potential, and then sell them to other entrepreneurs or would-be
entrepreneurs. The focus becomes finding, buying (and perhaps
refurbishing) businesses, in the same way that a real estate investor
locates homes, rehabs them, and then flips them for a profit.
This all becomes possible because the
entrepreneur has not just created a business but has also designed
excellent systems for keeping it going. Rather than dealing on the level
of isolated actions and reactionary tactics, in other words, the
entrepreneurial investor has risen to the level of broad and
comprehensive strategies that work across all sorts of products,
services, and economic cycles. Working smart replaces working hard, and
the rewards – both financial and personal – are abundant.
Level Five: The True Entrepreneur
Having learned new things every step of
the way and evolved through various stages of entrepreneurial
accomplishment and insight, it is possible to reach the ultimate goal
and realize one’s dreams in a really life-changing way. The true
entrepreneur experiences a paradigm shift that involves a four-step
process of changed thinking:
#1: Idealization – Imagine gigantic, all-encompassing dreams for creating the ideal world.
#2: Visualization – Picture the ideal world as a reality and begin to clarify this vision on a daily basis, filling in more details each day.
#3: Verbalization – Begin to put
words to the dream and talk of it as if it was already happening. Talk
about it to others as if it were real and continue to have a personal
dialog with the ideal to make it come true.
#4: Materialization – Because the
effort and intention of designing and believing in the ideal and the
dream, things begin to fall into place and happen in a natural and
automatic way. The idea becomes a real and tangible fact that
materializes in the world and influences others while opening new doors
to fresh opportunities and the birth of more dreams.
The true entrepreneur is a dreamer whose dreams come true, and an income earner whose income is passive.
I want to believe this has been an
insightful piece for you as it was for me when I read through them. Feel
free to share your thoughts in the comment section below.
Till next time, we are all work in progress…
Edited by tatee - Sep 17 2013 at 6:55am