It takes a lot of self-belief and courage to blaze your own business trail. It takes considerable self confidence to start up your own business in spite of skepticism; and to convince partners, financiers and other stakeholders that you are pursuing a valuable opportunity and that you have the know how and resources to make it happen.
To then market your own products and services and to constantly talk about yourself and your business usually requires more front than a bus.
These characteristics define many startup entrepreneurs. They also define the attributes of a healthy ego if arrogance and an exaggerated sense of superiority are not present.
The shy retiring types generally don’t do as well in the start up stage unless they have a strategy to circumvent their shyness. They just don’t have the pushing power required. However, they often make good implementers, managers and technicians once the business is up and running.
One trait that defines a healthy entrepreneurial ego is attracting people smarter than themselves and people who have expertise that they don’t. The unhealthy ego either tries to go it alone or hire substandard talent who pose no threat. The problem is that substandard talent is still a significant expense but doesn’t contribute much to the bottom line.
Similarly the smart entrepreneurs know how to get the best out of other people by not feeling the need to micro-manage everything, but by making others accountable and by leveraging income and profit off their skill and hard work.
It still takes great confidence and self belief to start up your own business, take the ownership reins firmly and manage it. Managing by being the boss is always preferable to managing by consensus or by being popular. In my experience, employees still respect a clear job description, clear rules and a strong, fair, decisive leader.
Being a firm and fair leader doesn’t require arrogance or an overwhelming need to be right all the time. It means ensuring that people work to the plan and to the systems in place. Being decisive means making timely decisions; not ignoring good advice.
Starting a business and making a profit requires a healthy positive ego, not an unhealthy negative ego. After all, the successful entrepreneur must make him or herself attractive to many stakeholders before they can even get out of the blocks.
Until next time!
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