Two Most Common Entrepreneurial Attributes – Not What You Think!

Marissa Levin
Marissa Levin
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So I was on the phone with a close friend today who is another woman business owner. We discovered that we have a common connection. Here is how the conversation went:

Me: “I can’t believe we both know him! I think he’s amazing. Don’t you? So kind! And incredibly successful.”

Friend: “True…he is very kind and successful.  But Marissa, you do know he is full of S!%#T right??”

Me: “Oh yes definitely! But that’s only because he’s a great entrepreneur!”

That conversation, and a previous conversation with another business owner, led me to write this column.

Entrepreneurs know that they require tremendous resilience and energy to recover from setbacks, move through challenges, and inspire others when situations are difficult. I’m often asked how I do have so much energy – especially since I live a caffeine-free/sugar-free life (no coffee, soda – or even chocolate as of October 1st).

I never have an answer because I don’t really understand what people are talking about. I only operate at this energy level. Anything else seems to be in slow motion.

Most entrepreneurs have two common attributes:

  • A high BS level (always well-intentioned of course.) This could also be known as eternal optimism or eternal positivity

Attribute #1: Overwhelming Evidence of Entrepreneurial ADD/ADHD

The topic of entrepreneurs and ADD/ADHD is not new. Virtually every business magazine and psychology trade publication has explored this topic.  The characteristics of adult ADD/ADHD include:

  • Great energy
  • Creator of unique ideas
  • Seeing situations a bit differently than others
  • Great visionary but terrible implementer
  • Not good with details
  • Often misrepresents or underestimates problems or time required to implement an idea
  • Has great excitement for “idea-of-the-day” and loses focus for previous ideas

I can neither confirm nor deny that all of these attributes apply to me. However, I am the first to admit I am a great visionary but need a strong team behind me to implement, I have a high amount of energy, and sometimes I do underestimate the energy and time required to turn an idea into action.

I’ve included some links to supporting articles. (If you click on them, try to stay on-task…. ignore the links on their pages, and come back to this article!!)

Attribute #2: A High BS Level (Also known as Eternal Optimism)

Is this your typical conversation with an entrepreneur?

You: “Hey it’s so great to see you! How are things going with your business?”

Optimistic Entrepreneur: “Things are GREAT!! We are ROCKING!  Business is great, my employees are great, it’s all good!!”

Then you walk away, convinced you are the only business owner who still doesn’t have the whole business ownership thing figured out.

When this happens, remind yourself that you are talking to an entrepreneur. Entrepreneurs must have resilience and optimism to push through challenges. They have the weight of the world on their shoulders. They have customers, employees, partners, shareholders, banks, families of employees, and their own families depending on them for support.

If entrepreneurs don’t believe that things are great, that’s a problem. They need to believe in themselves and their vision to bring about a positive outcome.

We are what we believe. We manifest what we think. As Napoleon Hill says, “Conceive. Believe, Achieve.

Here are some articles that validate this perspective:

These two attributes are GOOD for those that believe they can make an impact in our communities and in our world.

Celebrate the wonderful world of entrepreneurship, and the essential traits that may make others a bit frustrated but make us successful.

Still with me?? Look!! A Bird!!


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