While the definition of entrepreneurship has stayed constant for decades, the possibilities for wannabe entrepreneurs have evolved. Think about it: 100 years ago, what options did an entrepreneur have? If you didn’t have the skill to make something, and didn’t have the capital to buy something, you were out of luck. Fast forward to today, and there are 582 million entrepreneurs in the world.
The options available to entrepreneurs today have exploded. Thanks to technology like Shopify and, yes, Oberlo, the barriers to enter entrepreneurship have been removed. That’s a big reason why, according to Google, usage of the term looks like this:
This post takes a closer look at what it means to be an entrepreneur. You’ll also hear from some modern-day entrepreneurs who explain how they took the leap, and how you can too.
- What is Entrepreneurship?
- What is an Entrepreneur? Entrepreneur Definition
- What Is the Meaning of Entrepreneurship?
- Entrepreneur Meaning from Real Entrepreneurs
- Importance of Entrepreneurship
- Why Do People Become Entrepreneurs
- Examples of Entrepreneurs
- Startup Entrepreneurs Share Entrepreneurship Tips
- Entrepreneur Quotes
- Entrepreneur Ideas
- What Are Entrepreneur Skills?
- Want to Learn More?
What is Entrepreneurship?
Entrepreneurship is the act of creating a business or businesses while building and scaling it to generate a profit.
However, as a basic entrepreneurship definition, it’s a bit limiting. The more modern entrepreneurship definition is also about transforming the world by solving big problems. Like initiating social change, creating an innovative product or presenting a new life-changing solution.
What the entrepreneurship definition doesn’t tell you is that entrepreneurship is what people do to take their career and dreams into their hands and lead it in the direction of their own choice. It’s about building a life on your own terms. No bosses. No restricting schedules. And no one holding you back. Entrepreneurs are able to take the first step into making the world a better place, for everyone in it.
What is an Entrepreneur? Entrepreneur Definition
An entrepreneur is a person who sets up a business with the aim to make a profit.
This entrepreneur definition can be a bit vague but for good reason. An entrepreneur can be a person who sets up their first online store on the side or a freelancer just starting out.
The reason why they’re considered entrepreneurs, though some disagree, is because where you start out isn’t where you’ll end up. An entrepreneur is someone who starts a side hustle that can eventually create a full-time, sustainable business with employees. Same with the freelancer. If your entrepreneurial mindset is focused on creating a profitable business, you fit the entrepreneur definition.
However, the entrepreneur meaning involves much more than being a business or job creator. Entrepreneurs are some of the world’s most powerful transformers. From Elon Musk sending people to Mars to Bill Gates and Steve Jobs making computers part of every household, entrepreneurs imagine the world differently.
And the entrepreneur definition rarely ever talks about the enormous impact entrepreneurs have on the world.
Entrepreneurs see possibilities and solutions where the average person only sees annoyances and problems.
Understanding what is an entrepreneur can help more people recognize the value they contribute to the world.
What Is the Meaning of Entrepreneurship?
The meaning of entrepreneurship involves an entrepreneur who takes action to make a change in the world. Whether startup entrepreneurs solve a problem that many struggle with each day, bring people together in a way no one has before, or build something revolutionary that advances society, they all have one thing in common: action.
It’s not some idea that’s stuck in your head. Entrepreneurs take the idea and execute it. Entrepreneurship is about execution of ideas.
Entrepreneur Meaning from Real Entrepreneurs
Let’s take a look at what real entrepreneurs have to say about the meaning of entrepreneurship, and how they would define it.
What’s the entrepreneur meaning? Altimese Nichole, Founder of NicholeNicole shares, “Many are excited to become an entrepreneur but get discouraged when reality hits. Entrepreneurship means staying committed to your goals beyond your feelings of excitement. Stay the course and keep your “why” in mind.”
What’s the meaning of entrepreneurship? Founder and CEO of NeuroFlow shares “Entrepreneurship means being the one that is willing to take a leap, work hard enough to sacrifice everything else around you, all in the name of solving problems because no one else is capable or possesses the desire.”
The entrepreneur meaning is a bit different for Jolijt Tamanaha, Director of Marketing and Finance of Fresh Prints, who shares “Entrepreneurs make their way down a never-ending list of problems with grit, passion, and energy. While intense, being an entrepreneur means you get to live life learning an incredible amount and maximize your impact on the world because you have to tackle the hardest problems.”
What’s the entrepreneur meaning for Nicole Faith, Founder of 10 Carat Creations? Here’s how she breaks it down, “Being an entrepreneur means having a plan and vision but still succeeding or trying to succeed when the plan falls apart and you’re left with only your vision. It also means knowing when to give up, especially if your idea isn’t working due to forces outside of yourself.”
What’s the entrepreneur meaning? According to James Sandoval, Founder and CEO of Measure Match, says, “Being an entrepreneur means diving headlong into a [likely very risky] venture of your own making, working hard, long hours, often alone, to carve out a path to success and never, ever giving up.”
Mike Kim, co-founder and COO of KPOP Foods, shares what the entrepreneur meaning is really all about. He shares, “Entrepreneurship is not for the faint hearted. I am a US Army veteran. I have been in combat and I have endured many difficult situations. However, I can honestly say starting a company has been just as challenging, albeit in different ways. While no one’s life may be in imminent danger, the battles you face on your entrepreneurial journey can last years with no repose. Creating a successful business requires massive amounts of action, perseverance, and conviction. If you understand this and choose to proceed, you’ll find the experience rich in rewards. ”
Importance of Entrepreneurship
What is entrepreneurship really about? And why’s it so important? An entrepreneur is the person who sees a problem in the world and immediately focuses on creating the solution. They’re the leaders that strike out on their own to improve society. Whether they’re creating jobs or a new product, they constantly take action to ensure world progress. In the process of understanding what is entrepreneurship, let’s look at why entrepreneurs are important in society.
- Entrepreneurs create jobs: Without entrepreneurs, jobs wouldn’t exist. Entrepreneurs take on the risk to employ themselves. Their ambition to continue their business’ growth eventually leads to the creation of new jobs. As their business continues to grow, even more jobs are created. Thus, lowering unemployment rates while helping people feed their families.
- Entrepreneurs innovate: Some of the greatest technologies in today’s society have come from businesses. The technological advances come out of a need to solve a problem, create efficiencies, or improve the world. Thus, in periods where there’s more advancement in technology, it’s usually due to the work of an entrepreneur.
- Entrepreneurs create change: Entrepreneurs dream big so naturally some of their ideas will make worldwide change. They might create a new product that solves a burning problem or take on the challenge to explore something never explored before. Many believe in improving the world with their products, ideas or businesses.
- Entrepreneurs give to society: While some have this notion of the rich being evil and greedy, they often do more for the greater good than the average person. They make more money and thus pay more in taxes which helps fund social services. Entrepreneurs are some of the biggest donors to charities and nonprofits for various causes. Some seek to invest their money in creating solutions to help poorer communities have access to things we take for granted like clean drinking water and good health care.
- Entrepreneurs add to national income: Entrepreneurship generates new wealth in an economy. New ideas and improved products or services from entrepreneurs allow for the growth of new markets and new wealth to be created in an economy. Adding to that, increased level of employment and earnings add to the national income.
- Entrepreneurship decreases poverty: In the spirit of sharing good news, more people are being pulled out of poverty today than ever before. This is likely due to globalization. Being able to connect to millions and billions of people on the internet allows new entrepreneurs to find customers around the world. So, those who want to make money online are able to do so to get out of poverty.
Why Do People Become Entrepreneurs
What is entrepreneurship’s appeal? With over 400 million entrepreneurs, entrepreneurship has an international appeal. Every entrepreneur has their own ‘why’ that drove them to dive into being their own boss. Whether entrepreneurs need more freedom or to make the world a better place, they all take control of their life by living life on their own terms. Here are a few of the reasons why people become entrepreneurs:
- To change the world: Many entrepreneurs strive to make the world better. Whether entrepreneurs believe in space exploration, eliminating poverty or creating a practical but game-changing product, they ultimately build a brand in service of others. Some entrepreneurs use their business as a way to raise capital quickly to funnel into their noble causes. To social entrepreneurs, building an empire is about creating a better world for everyone.
- They don’t want a boss: Entrepreneurs often struggle with having a boss. They often feel suffocated, restricted and held back. Some entrepreneurs may feel that they have a more effective way of doing things. Others may dislike the lack of creative freedom. Ultimately, they become attracted to entrepreneurship to succeed on their own terms. Being the boss can be more fulfilling than having one. Check out 10 Obvious Signs You Should Be Working for Yourself.
- They want flexible hours: Entrepreneurship is often popular around those who need flexible hours. Many people with disabilities often enjoy entrepreneurship as it allows them to work when they’re able to. Parents with young children might also prefer entrepreneurship as it allows them to raise young children at home or pick them up from school without having to feel guilty about it. Students may also like the flexibility of entrepreneurship as their course workload might not allow them to work standard office hours.
- They want to work from anywhere: Along with flexibility in working hours, entrepreneurship is popular among those who don’t want to be tied down to a specific location. Entrepreneurs might not want to work from the same place every single day, as it might get boring for them. So, if you’re looking for the freedom to work from anywhere in the world, maybe the entrepreneur lifestyle is the right one for you.
- They can’t get a job: Many stumble into entrepreneurship when they can’t get a job. Getting fired, a lack of experience or a criminal record can prevent the average person from getting a job when they’re desperate. Instead of being defeated by their situation, they create new opportunities for themselves. A new graduate might start an online store the summer after graduation to build up their resume. A parent who is seasonally laid off each winter might start a business to ensure they can continue feeding their family while keeping a roof over their heads.
- They don’t fit into the corporate environment: Entrepreneurs don’t often thrive in corporate environments. It’s often very restricting for their growth. They may dislike the lack of control they have in their role or the office politics. In general, you can spot an entrepreneur in a corporate environment as they’re usually trying to gain more control in their role and learning their coworkers responsibilities to better understand how everything fits together.
- They’re curious: Entrepreneurs love finding out the answer to the question, ‘what will happen if…’ They’re experimental. Entrepreneurs love learning. They regularly read business books to advance their knowledge. So naturally, entrepreneurship appeals to them because doing allows them to learn the most in the shortest amount of time. Their curiosity allows their continued growth.
- They’re ambitious: Those who love reaching difficult goals and milestones are made to be entrepreneurs. There’s no limit to how much an entrepreneur can make and so they can always work to achieve higher levels of greatness. Since there’s no limit to what they can achieve, entrepreneurs constantly find themselves growing and achieving more than they ever imagined. When obstacles get presented in front of them, they find the workaround to their goal. Entrepreneurs are unstoppable.
Examples of Entrepreneurs
What is entrepreneurship about? Let’s take a look at some examples of entrepreneurs to find out:
Walt Disney co-founded the Walt Disney Company, one of the leading motion picture studios. He was also the visionary of theme parks like Disneyland and Walt Disney World. His brand started with the creation of the Mickey Mouse character and eventually expanded to include characters like Snow White, Cinderella and more. As an entrepreneur, he had to overcome adversity with challenges such as people stealing his work, commercial failures and more. However, he kept pushing through staying committed to his vision.
Mark Zuckerberg created several products before building Facebook. He created an instant messaging tool that his father used in his dentistry practice to communicate with his receptionist. Zuckerberg also created music software that Microsoft and AOL were interested in buying even though he was only a teenager. Within the year he first founded Facebook, he had already had 1 million users. Today, Mark Zuckerberg has a networth of $68.3 billion.
Sara Blakely first started her Spanx brand in 1998. She was one of the first creators of women’s leggings. Her brand specializes in shapewear and also includes bras, panties, hosiery and more. She’s also the inventor of arm tights which allows women to wear their summer clothing year round. At one point, Blakely was the youngest self made female billionaire.
Let’s take a look at the top entrepreneurship tips shared by startup entrepreneurs, and how you can overcome the challenges that may come your way.
Startup entrepreneur Dez Stephens of Radiant Health Institute shares, “The ONE piece of advice I’d give someone who wants to be an entrepreneur is to start your business with no debt and no overhead. That’s how I started my company six years ago and it greatly increased my inevitable success.”
One of the best entrepreneur quotes comes from serial entrepreneur Swati Davidson who shares, “Trust your intuition. The reason is simple: In order to beat your competitors and grow rapidly, you’ve got to be able to spot those key opportunities and then take action, even when risky. This requires “instinct” and the confidence to act up on it. Some call it luck, but it’s not. It’s having the courage to trust your gut.”
Startup entrepreneur Keval Baxi of Codal Inc. shares “One piece of advice that I’d give to someone who wants to be an entrepreneur is to be reliable. If you say you’re going to do something, do it. Leaders and managers that don’t follow through fail to gain the respect of their team, and don’t encourage accountability. Make sure that your team knows that you’ll be there when you’re needed.”
Startup entrepreneur Chrys Tan of Chrys Media says, “The one piece of advice that I would give to an entrepreneur would be to embrace failure. Failure is guaranteed when you are an entrepreneur, whether it is the failure of meeting a number of targeted sales or even the failure of a business. But if you know that experiencing failure is guaranteed when running a business, you wouldn’t fear failure but embrace failure instead. When you embrace failure, you take on more risks and you move past failures faster as well.”
Let’s take a look at some of the popular entrepreneur quotes to inspire you.
“The entrepreneur always searches for change, responds to it, and exploits it as an opportunity.” – Peter Drucker, entrepreneur quotes
“Entrepreneurs are simply those who understand that there is little difference between obstacle and opportunity and are able to turn both to their advantage.” – Niccolo Machiavelli, entrepreneur quotes
“From my very first day as an entrepreneur, I’ve felt the only mission worth pursuing in business is to make people’s lives better.” – Richard Branson entrepreneur quotes
“A person who sees a problem is a human being; a person who finds a solution is visionary; and the person who goes out and does something about it is an entrepreneur.” – Naveen Jain entrepreneur quotes
“An entrepreneur is someone who jumps off a cliff and builds a plane on the way down.” — Entrepreneur quotes from Reid Hoffman
“The number one reason why people fail in life is because they listen to their friends, family and neighbors.” – Napoleon Hill entrepreneur quotes
“It’s not about ideas. It’s about making ideas happen.” – Scott Belsky entrepreneur quotes
“There’s lots of bad reasons to start a company. But there’s only one good, legitimate reason, and I think you know what it is: it’s to change the world.” – Phil Libin entrepreneur quotes
“Being an entrepreneur is a mindset. You have to see things as opportunities all the time. I like to do interviews. I like to push people on certain topics. I like to dig into the stories where there’s not necessarily a right or wrong answer.” – Soledad O’Brien entrepreneur quotes
For more quotes about entrepreneurship that will motivate you, check out our post for best inspirational business quotes for entrepreneurs.
A startup entrepreneur can build almost any type of business. Here are a few business ideas to get you started:
- Ecommerce store owner
- Freelancer (write a blog, accountant, designer)
- Teaching (online courses, author)
- App creator (chatbots, social media apps)
- Service based business (food delivery, cleaning, dog walking)
- Consultant based business (wedding planner, life coach)
- Apartment rentals (Airbnb)
- Marketing businesses (PR firms, influencers, SEO brands)
- Affiliate marketing (Amazon, Clickbank, etc)
- Blogger (Product reviews, niche blog, magazine)
- Vlogger (Start a YouTube channel, Twitch)
- Flipper (domain name, website, house)
- Gig Economy (driver, Fiverr)
- Real estate agent (condos, houses, commercial)
- Photographer (product photography, sell photos)
- Stock Broker (buying and selling stocks)
- Reseller business
What Are Entrepreneur Skills?
There are many skills required to start a business. The most popular entrepreneur skills are marketing, business development, customer service, leadership, execution, resilience, focus, determination, talent acquisition, continuous learner. Want to find more popular entrepreneur skills? Check out these business skills.
In this article, you learned what is entrepreneurship, what is an entrepreneur, discovered the entrepreneur definition from first-hand accounts from popular startup entrepreneurs. We hope that you’ve learned what the meaning of entrepreneurship is for some of the entrepreneurs out there. If this article will show you anything, let it show you that many entrepreneurs care about a cause so intensely that they build an empire to solve some of the toughest problems. If you’re looking to make your mark on the world, solve a big problem or advance society, consider entrepreneurship. You could just be the person to change the world. All it takes is taking your best entrepreneur ideas and acting on them.
What is the meaning of entrepreneurship to you? Comment on why you became an entrepreneur below.