EntrepreneurshipMarch 8, 2018

The entrepreneurial mindset

Any successful business starts with the right mindset. For this is what lays the groundwork for the gorgeous castle every entrepreneur builds throughout his life. The stronger the groundwork, the higher the chances are for it to prosper and stand against raging storms of the modern economy for years to come.
Vladimir Kudinov
Co-Founder @Foculty

The entrepreneurial mindset is a flaming core burning inside a person, which wakes them up every morning and sends them to change other people’s lives.

There is a common misconception that such a way of thinking is impossible to develop. People used to believe it could only appear as an inborn talent or that it was a kind of secret knowledge given selectively by entrepreneur parents to their children.

The truth is, anyone can build this mindset step by step. You just need to follow the simple rules I’m giving below.

Love your failures

Make your mistakes, value them, get them analyzed, and then improve yourself.

An entrepreneurial mindset means you love your mistakes. You know that every new misadventure is a new experience. An entrepreneur doesn’t take failure as failure, but as a result, and any result brings some kind of new knowledge. Once you realize this, you won’t be afraid of mistakes anymore.

Look at toddlers learning to eat with a spoon. With great difficulty they grab it, trying to aim at their mouth, only to hit their mother’s ear or drop it on the floor. Gradually, by studying through their faults, they master the necessary skills. However, later on, society and parents instill in them the belief that all mistakes are bad. Errors bring low grades at school and blame at home. All that results in a deeply rooted fear of mistakes.

We are frightened of asking questions simply because we are afraid to look stupid. We are scared of making the first step because it may lead to a failure. We can go around in circles for years willing to start our first business, but too anxious of playing it wrong to actually follow through. The number of businesses that were never started or were cancelled at an early stage due to that fear makes the whole thing look rather like a great business massacre.

Free yourself of that fear. Make your mistakes, value them, get them analyzed, and then improve yourself.

Know your goals

A lack of goals makes us feeble. Consider shooting a bow without any particular target. How could you decide whether you hit or missed? But when the goal is set clearly, our mind helps us find the shortest way to reach it.

It’s well-known that blindfolded people, as well as people who are lost in terrain devoid of any visual reference, tend to walk in circles. That’s a perfect analogy for why proper goal setting is so important to the entrepreneurial mindset.

Be responsible for what you do

Every day we meet people who try to pass the buck whenever they can. Either they are late for work or fail to deliver on their promises; there is always something or someone else to blame. Things seem to happen to them that are just beyond their control, so they constantly play the victim.

Developing an entrepreneurial mindset means you take full responsibility for your actions. Every time you fail, you analyze the situation and its causes, making sure that next time it won’t occur again. What should I do to meet the deadline with this article? How should I keep in mind sending out this press-release at the next project launch?

An entrepreneur is building his castle to be resolute and precise, so there should be no place for panic in the walls.

An entrepreneur is the alpha male of his pack, and it’s he who is responsible for everything that occurs in his company. Grasping that fact enables him to improve himself as well as his employees in the best sort of way. Don’t take this understanding for granted, it must be nurtured day by day.

Control your emotions

How we perceive the situation depends on how we look at it. An issue becomes a problem only when we call it so. With an entrepreneurial mind you impassively consider any case, however severe it may seem, as an opportunity to improve something. You accept what has happened, perform necessary corrective actions, and arrange the procedure that will help to avoid this issue in future.

An entrepreneur is building his castle to be resolute and precise, so there should be no place for panic in the walls.

Ask questions

Over the course of time, some of us just forget how to ask questions. However, one question to the right person is sometimes able to save us months of searching for a proper solution on our own. We may be too selfish to ask, afraid our skills might be questioned or we might look stupid.

A person with an entrepreneurial mindset uses questions as the most convenient way to gain necessary information. We ask our employees, inquire our mentors and friends, and interview strangers. Every answer opens a hidden possibility for us to grow.

Surround yourself with people who will hold you to a higher standard

We are greatly influenced by the people who surround us, and often we tend to accompany ourselves with those who just make us look better, smarter, and more talented. It’s a losing game, indeed. You can only move forward when your team is as equally strong as you, or even stronger.

Connect with people who have already reached the level you are aiming at. Feeling dumb among them means you made the right choice. A person who is more developed than you in your circle is a sign showing you the way up.

Enroll only those people who can teach you something. Having such a valuable resource aboard will bring you much higher than you could expect.

Continuous learning

Most of his life an entrepreneur spends educating himself. There is no action without knowledge—blindfolded and ignorant, we may stumble around for years without any direction.

Our will to study every day, take lessons from our failures, read books, and watch educational videos gets us closer to our goals. We are eager to learn from other people’s experiences in hopes of becoming better, wiser, and more efficient.

Done is better than perfect

You would be better off accomplishing your task with 3 out of 5 core objectives met, and then improving it gradually, than never having it finished. Perfectionism is the worst enemy of progressing.

In Lateral Thinking: Creativity Step by Step, Edward de Bono mentions the “excellent but not enough” state. Imagine we’ve made something great with all our might and main, and got a result that perfectly matches our expectations. However, the very next day the world changes, so does the environment, and our result fails to be excellent anymore.

You would do better to attain your goal with small steps rather than trying to cover the whole distance in one mighty leap. It’s a compound effect in action.

Beautiful mind

Try to dig into every single case of talented persons, soon you’d find out that it actually takes constant practice, fighting through tons of mistakes, and endless self-improvement.

These principles are never easy to get. In my case, the trigger moment was when I suddenly recognized I had no money to pay my rent. I should have changed my mindset first, to start building my future brick by brick after that.

These are the principles that make all the difference between an entrepreneur and employee. Our mindset impacts everything around us: where we work, whose company we prefer, what clothes we wear, which targets we aim for.

Your belief in someone’s overwhelming talent has a sedative effect. A world where only those who can be successful are those who are naturally gifted is demotivating! Look at how rich he is—it’s because he’s got talent. And this actress performs so well just because she was born this way. Such nonsense!

Try to dig into every single case of talented persons, soon you’d find out that it actually takes constant practice, fighting through tons of mistakes, and endless self-improvement. We are able to change ourselves, and having mastered this once, we’re able to pass this ability to others.

In our Foculty blog we often discuss the factors and ideas that are apt to turn any person into an entrepreneur. Explaining business techniques in plain language, we shatter the myths about natural-born entrepreneurs. Giving simple, step-by-step instructions, we tell you how to improve your life, set your goals, and achieve them.

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