This morning, I received an email and was asked to try a test to see whether I’ve what it takes to be an entrepreneur? My score is 25 out of 32 and the result suggested “Start drafting a business proposal now”. Interesting! You can check out the entrepreneurial test here if you are interested.
While the test might not be comprehensive, it does tell us the basic criteria and characteristics required to be an entrepreneur. For examples patience, commitment, accountability, perseverance and risk-taking but to become a successful entrepreneur, it definitely requires more than that, such the following:
- An ability to construct a vision and sell it to many others
- A strong belief in one’s self
- A desire to accept risk and ambiguity, and the ability to live with them
- An ability to identify new opportunity even in unfavorable situation
- Like to try new things or do old things differently.
- Motivated by achievement rather than power and money.
The list could be longer as it also depends on the environment, education and culture that the entrepreneur is in. I couldn’t help but wonder how about home entrepreneur? Can anyone be a home entrepreneur and a successful one?
Can Anyone be a Successful Home Entrepreneur?
If you are wondering what’s the difference between the 2 terms – “entrepreneur” and “home entrepreneur”, the former run his or her business in proper office setting while the latter do it at home. It is easy for anyone to start a home business right now due to technological advancement but to become a Successful Home Entrepreneur; it is definitely NOT for anyone. Why? The reason is simple, home entrepreneur needs different skills set and characteristics to thrive in running a home business than a normal entrepreneur. And because of the nature of environment and business operation, some characteristics may become more important than the rest. Some of them are the following.
Since home entrepreneurs need to engage in all the business activities, they need to be highly independent and learn to be jack of all trades. In short, they need to know a little of everything of the business and learn to troubleshoot themselves when problems crop up. Over reliant on any third party vendors might jeopardize your business as not all vendors are co-operative and responsive at all times. Having a general knowledge of everything will put you at a better control of your business.
Hence, if you are a person who rely everything on other people to solve the problems for you, you may lack the independency to run a home business. You may find employing people to help you in running the business is a better option than running a solo home business.
The world renowned scientist – Thomas Huxley ever said, “Do what you should do, when you should do it, whether you feel like it or not.” We called this “self discipline“ and it controls your behavior, thoughts and help you to achieve your goals consistently. It is tempting for home entrepreneur to become slack occasionally as they are their own boss and work in their comfort zone. But slacking cause delay and delay cause failure. Self discipline is one important criterion for home business success but yet not an easy skill to master. Many people find that if they don’t rule their minds well, their minds will rule them.
Having positive mindset helps to overcomes big and small obstacles and it is especially crucial for home entrepreneurs as they are generally working solo. There is no one to advise or call for support, not even mentors or friends as they will not fully understand all the problems so it is easy to meet with setbacks and rejections everyday. In addition, when face with less-than-stellar business results; it would be tempting to become negative. If you often find yourself having negative self-talk and doubt, learn to guard your thoughts well otherwise once you let these negativity sabotage you, your business will be destroyed as well.
Home entrepreneur is neither for the faint of heart nor the less than positive mindset.
Some said that entrepreneur is like tennis player, it is a lonely journey. During the match the tennis player can neither talk to the coach nor the opponent as he/she is 70 feet away from the other side of the court. Likewise, home entrepreneur will even be loner as they are working all alone. Nobody will want to share your vision or passion, let alone anybody will want to hear your grievances. There will be no meeting, discussion, reporting or presentation to go to. If you are fortunate, you may occasionally have chance to talk to your customers or vendors but there are some businesses like writing, painting or affiliate marketing seldom need to talk to any customer all the times.
You may have friends but provided they are business owners like you otherwise they may not have the same level of interest as you. To make new friends, you have to invest considerable time but unfortunately time is considered a luxury to many home entrepreneurs. At the end of the day, you may find lesser friends to talk to so if you are a person who can’t live without a crowd, becoming home entrepreneur may not be a good option to you.
Long Working Hours
Contrary to everybody’s belief, working on your own is not as carefree as you think. Many people thought that by working at home, you can achieve total freedom and flexibility but the reality is that you will need to work longer and harder during the startup phase. And most likely, you could end up 24×7, 365 days with no leave or holidays. However, once your business is on track, it may not be so as you can outsource some of mundane tasks to others.
So if you are not mentally prepared to work long and hard for the first few years, abandon the idea to become a home entrepreneur. You will feel psychologically unbalance as you will need to sacrifice a lot for your home business.
In summary, not anyone can be home entrepreneurs as some of them may lack the skill sets, characteristics or even determination to run a home business successfully despite some studies shown that some of the skill sets and characteristics can be learned and practiced with deliberated and consistent efforts.
Do you think anyone can be a home entrepreneur? I would like to hear your comments and thoughts on this.