The word “Entrepreneur” comes to me as quite a cool and chic word. Especially when people ask, “What do you do?“, you answer, “I’m an Entrepreneur!“. Hey, it’s cool, isn’t it!
And when we thought of someone as an entrepreneur, we often thought of a person setting up a business, a physical shop or a virtual one, a person who own franchises all over the island, or someone who always board meetings with his/her shareholders.
Anyway, that’s what I always thought of, and it seems true to a certain from a third person point of view. However, my definition of an entrepreneur has somehow changed over the years.
An entrepreneur doesn’t really mean he/she own a business. In fact, you can become an entrepreneur in your job, in your daily life, in whatever you do!
Hence, other than defining entrepreneurs as people who own businesses, we should definite people with the ‘entrepreneurial mind’ as entrepreneurs!
So what’s an entrepreneurial mind like?
When people see problems, you see opportunities.
Problem: The food here sucks. I’m not eating here again.
Opportunity: What can I do to get better food for the people here?
You can think logically when others are emotional.
If you’re in stock market, when the market crash and people throwing stocks, you will want to check back on your own portfolio and do the necessary research, before following what others do and say.
You take the first step.
This is not really about becoming the first person to do something for fame or glory. But instead, you take the first initiative, while others wait for something to happen. If you see that your office air-conditioner is dripping with water, others will continue to use it until the whole air-conditioner break down. You saw it and get it fixed asap.
This is sometimes what people says about “creating something out of nothing”. In fact, all of us human beings have the instinct of ‘resourcefulness’. Don’t believe? Throw yourself in a jungle for a month, and you’ll go around finding food everyday. This is our survival instinct. However, as we live in the world where almost everything is being provided for, we somehow forget how to utilize our resourcefulness to the maximum potential .
When an entrepreneur sees that his business needs more cash-flow, he will think of lots of ways to get funds for his business. Likewise, we see lots of resourceful people around us everyday…
When you’re holding a party, and you ran out of food and drinks for your guests. The minimum time to get food is 1 hour. So what can you do to keep your guests occupied?
You’re painting your house, and you realized that you ran out of paint (+ no more paint left in the world), and you have 3 more walls left. What will you do?
You’re running an online TV channel, and you upload most of your videos online. But all video hosts like YouTube, Vimeo, Dailymotion, Viddler…etc is going to close down your channel. What will you do?
(look at your own answers. You’re resourceful!!)
I believe you get the idea of what I mean of having an entrepreneurial mind. And you do see that it doesn’t mean only you have to own a business, then you can have an entrepreneurial mind. We develop an entrepreneurial mind based on how we see and do things in life everyday.
And this does means that you could also be an entrepreneur in your job too! I don’t mean you buy over your company and be the boss, but simply by doing your job, as if you are running the whole company.
While I was doing my internship with EconomyWatch.com, although it’s just like an internship to me, I try to do it like I’m owning the gigantic website. My role there was to add content on economics and politics, to promote the site via social media channels and SEO (my favorite!) , and to make it the best economics/finance/politics website online.
So while i can simply write whatever I want, and post whatever stuffs I can on the EconomyWatch.com website, I make sure that it is something I want to see, just like I’m the boss of the website. Hence, this also means that whatever content I put up, it got to be fresh, original, interesting and relevant content. And I can bring up any new ideas too! Though an intern, my boss (the real owner) do welcome all ideas and feedbacks from everybody.
By the way, here’s the two featured articles during my time with EconomyWatch.
You too can put your entrepreneurial mind to work in your workplace too! But I do have to say that your boss or work environment do affects on how you use your entrepreneurial mind. If you boss is like my boss, who encourages feedback and ideas from the ground, go ahead and activate your entrepreneurial mind. If not, you will see that your mind will be ‘deactivated’, as your surroundings are flooded with words like “just do your job, don’t be act clever” , ” just follow, don’t ask so much”…
But hey, who says you have to just listen to all these ‘noises’? If you have a strong entrepreneurial mind, I can guarantee you wouldn’t want to stay in that environment for long. You’d either find a new environment, or start something yourself.
And that’s my simple definition of an entrepreneur.