17 Essential Traits of Successful Entrepreneurs – Part 2

In our last post, we began to review 17 Essential Traits of Successful Entrepreneurs. Here we will continue looking at additional great tips from the TAB community, on what makes a business, and an owner, thrive.

#8 Endurance in the face of adversity

Successful entrepreneurs do not give up easily. They make both calculated and reckless bets but believe their idea will endure. They bet their last cent and more on their belief. Endurance enables all of the other traits that we see emerge. As Walt Disney said, “often, the difference between success and failure is not giving up”.

PJ Timmins, Owner at TAB Ireland

#9 Flexibility

Successful entrepreneurs build a culture of listening, learning, and adapting.

They actively listen to their customers, prospects, employees, and other stakeholders, deploying strategies and processes designed for rapid learning. Business owners who succeed consistently understand that a company’s only long-term sustainable advantage is its ability to learn faster than its competition.

Many companies failed during the pandemic. However, flexible organisations learned faster, converted the learning into action, and could pivot their way into new markets, new products, new services, and record success.

Joe Zente, CEO at TAB Austin TX

#10 Neuroses

To be a highly successful entrepreneur, you have to be a bit neurotic. I find that trait to be the most interesting (almost like being schizophrenic). The exception is Howard Hughes functioning at a higher business acumen with genius, creative twist, or personality quirk.

Two of my favourite Howard Hughes quotes every successful entrepreneur should keep in mind:

“I’m not a paranoid, deranged millionaire.”

“Money can’t buy happiness.”

Kevin Hernandez, Owner at TAB Las Vegas, Henderson, Green Valley, Boulder City

#11 Self-discipline

As an entrepreneur, many things happen to you and your business that are out of your control. You can mitigate as best as you can but always be ready to deal with the unexpected. But what you can control is you and how you prepare every day. Be disciplined and consistent in:

  • Getting up and doing the work
  • Setting your daily/weekly/monthly/yearly goals
  • Creating and sticking to the plan
  • Prioritising and focusing on what’s important
  • Leading by example
  • Being productive
  • Managing your time
  • Having a good attitude
  • Staying calm in the face of diversity
  • Taking time for yourself

If you’re disciplined with this list, you’ll do a great job of managing those things in your control so you can better handle those that are not.

John Mousseau, Owner at TAB Jersey Shore North

#12 Hiring the right team

One of the many characteristics found in successful entrepreneurs is hiring the right team of talent. It would be best if you had the right team to turn your vision into a reality. Having the right talent pool onboard is as essential as having the ‘great idea.’ In fact, an entrepreneur needs both.

Steve Drury, President at TAB Focused Directions 

#13 The ability to prioritise 

Successful entrepreneurs block out time each day to think about their “big rocks” and treat this time as a sacred appointment. Mentally focusing on their priorities and thinking through their next action steps increases confidence, enables better decision making, and helps focus and align their team on the same goals.

Robert Haines, Owner at TAB Boise, Idaho 

#14 Self-confidence

An essential trait of any entrepreneur is the ability to navigate in the fog. Business owners have to make decisions every day, and many of them can be costly at the least if in error, and the worst cases fatal to the business. Nonetheless, there is seldom (if ever) complete information, clear options, or black and white factors. The entrepreneur must have confidence that they lead the company in the right direction, even when the outcome is uncertain, and others are saying he or she is wrong.

Here’s a gem from a recent session on Clubhouse with Elon Musk:

Q: “What words of encouragement would you give to an entrepreneur?”

A: “If you need words of encouragement, don’t be an entrepreneur.”

John Dini, President at MPN Incorporated 

#15 Social skills

No matter the environment, situation, or state of mind, successful entrepreneurs can make deep connections with other people within a short time. Colleagues, bankers, professionals, competitors, and strangers are made to feel comfortable, relevant, heard, and charmed when interactions occur. And the other party always remembers the exchange and how it made them feel.

 Stephen James, Owner at TAB Auckland, New Zealand

#16 Coach-ability

Successful entrepreneurs know that having a mentor or business coach can help them move faster and grow profitably. They often work with someone who has “been there and done that” to avoid the mistakes others have made. They will seek someone or a group of people they can meet with and problem-solve rather than do it alone. The world of business is too competitive to try going it alone. Your competitors have help, and you should, too, if you’re an entrepreneur.

Jim Morris, Owner at TAB Tennessee Valley Region

#17 Tenacity 

The one thing that differentiates the successful entrepreneur is tenacity. The road to success is mined with traps that can lead to failure, and inevitably you end up stepping on some of these. The successful entrepreneur recognises that this is part of the journey and has the tenacity to keep going, even when seemingly insurmountable challenges present themselves. For a successful entrepreneur, failure is never an option as they have the determination to keep going and find other roads to success.

Steve Davies, CEO at TAB Long Island