Common Misconceptions About Entrepreneurship… Is Entrepreneurship What You Really Think It Is?
There is always going to be a societal perception surrounding any topic because of information society has instilled in us as the “norm” and what “usually occurs”. Entrepreneurship is one of these topics. There are certain elements that coincidentally occur with most situations, but that does not limit it to every single occurrence. Individuals with no knowledge or experience with entrepreneurship may tend to perceive it in a way that is learned from pop culture, media, or experiences in their daily lives… but that isn’t all it is.
Although the majority of people may perceive entrepreneurship a certain way, these common misconceptions can be dissected and explained below:
1. Entrepreneurs are born, not made
Some people tend to believe that individuals are born as entrepreneurs, which means that they cannot be “made” or “developed”. It may seem as if individuals are born to follow a certain path because of their natural talents and abilities. However, talents and abilities can be practiced and built. It is definitely nurture rather than nature because entrepreneurs can be created, honed, and trained simply through passion and determination. If you are passionate and have a plausible idea, you can become an entrepreneur as long as you are not a quitter and are determined to see your idea through to the end.
You don’t necessarily have to be a “born leader” to be an entrepreneur or be born a genius at running a business. You can learn these skills through lessons or real-life experiences. If you are willing to learn and put in the time and effort, you can definitely succeed. Regardless of whether you are naturally born with talents, any skill needs to be consistently practiced. It’s possible to acquire skills and abilities to become a successful entrepreneur no matter if you were “born talented” or not. Anyone can become an entrepreneur – you just have to be passionate and dedicated to your idea or what you want to achieve.
2. Entrepreneurs are gamblers
Creating any business on your own is risky which is why people have a perception that entrepreneurs are “gamblers”. It is a common belief that the more you risk, the higher the return/reward you can get. However, entrepreneurs only take up risky challenges if they believe the odds are in their favour and that they have a chance to gain the reward because they tend to seek the best risk/reward action. All risks need to be carefully calculated and thought out. This is because all risks can put the business’s reputation, time and investment at stake. You do not want to take a risk purely on your belief – lots of research needs to be done beforehand. Most businesses are risky, but with thorough thinking and planning, one can take calculated risks and not lose everything, even if the business may not fully succeed.
3. Entrepreneurs just want to make a lot of money
Contrary to popular belief, money is not the only means in which success can be measured, and financial gain is not the only factor that motivates entrepreneurs. There are various factors that can motivate and inspire someone to become an entrepreneur such as chasing a dream, a desire to have a flexible schedule, being your own boss, having freedom, and making a change in the world. Money is definitely a motivator, but that doesn’t mean that it was what drove them to start the business. People usually create businesses because of their true passion for it and this is why they have the patience and effort to grow the business.
4. You have to be young to be an entrepreneur
People tend to have this idea that an individual should become an entrepreneur at x age to x age because below that bracket would be too young or above that bracket would be too old. Yet they don’t realize that age should not be a limitation for entrepreneurship; in the end it’s simply a number depicting how old you are which shouldn’t hold back what you choose to do at whatever point in your life.
As we are currently in the digital age, businesses can be easily started wherever and whenever through e-commerce. With the technological advancement today, no matter where you are and how old you are; you can start a business.
5. All entrepreneurs have a degree in business
Obtaining a degree in business may help you yield a slight advantage, but it isn’t a necessary component to become an entrepreneur. So many notable and successful entrepreneurs didn’t actually start out with a degree in business – let alone finish school for that matter. With hard work and determination, anyone can be a successful entrepreneur. You just have to WANT to learn and be willing to learn constantly – whether it’s marketing or another topic related to your business such as food.
Individuals have the ability to come up with an idea and create something regardless of the degree they have – you can even have no degree. People also learn as they go, so skills that you may not have now that you may need in the future can be learned through taking lessons, self-teaching or through real-world experiences. Entrepreneurs come from all different backgrounds; the diversity is what makes entrepreneurship so interesting because you use what you know to your advantage and constantly build your skills as you go.
There is not one true path to success with regards to entrepreneurship. You can be a college dropout and become a very successful entrepreneur. It is all about how innovative you are, how passionate you are, and how much you want to succeed.
Even in Enactus Ryerson, not all of the project managers are pursuing a degree in business – they come from all different programs across campus.
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