What differences do small business owners and entrepreneurs have in personality, work, thought process, and anything you feel makes them different breeds? Originally appeared on Quora: the place to gain and share knowledge, empowering people to learn from others and better understand the world.
Here is the summary from a worksheet that I give to my Start Your Own Business students to see if they are more a businessperson starting a Small Business or more an entrepreneur founding a Startup.
There is a difference between the two in terms of goals, products, and outlook.
The way my students answer each question gives them an insight into the mind of the Small Business Owner and the Entrepreneur and so helps them identify the differences in the ‘breeds’.
Describe The Current Market
- Small Business owner: There is already an existing and established market for my idea with many businesses operating successfully.
- Entrepreneur: There are no businesses that I know of currency trading in the market where I plan to establish my business.
What Is Your Plan?
- Small Business owner: My plan is to totally replicate an existing business but in a new geographic area.
- Entrepreneur: My plan is to innovate and create a completely new market for my products
What Is Your Planned Sphere of Influence?
- Small Business owner: A local suburban or geographic area.
- Entrepreneur: Hopefully, a global market.
What Is Your Funding Preference?
- Small Business owner: To use my own funds plus get loans from family or financial institutions.
- Entrepreneur: Get funds from any investor that can help make my idea a success
What Product Do You Intend to Sell?
- Small Business owner: The product I intend to sell is already sold in the market with a proven acceptance by customers.
- Entrepreneur: It’s a product that is completely new to the market.
What Is Your Goal?
- Small Business owner: My goal is to get a small sustainable share of a large market.
- Entrepreneur: My goal is to dominate a particular field or market.
What Is Your Long-Term Aim?
- Small Business owner: To build a nest egg for me or my family. Basically, to make money.
- Entrepreneur: To ‘put a dent in the universe’. To make a difference.
How Will Your Idea Make Money?
- Small Business owner: The answer to that question is already clearly understood by me and others. I have seen the examples and they are well documented.
- Entrepreneur: It has not yet been worked out by me. I’m still working on it.
What Are You Most Interested in Building?
- Small Business owner: A profitable business that is financially sustainable over the long-term.
- Entrepreneur: A business with high sales and growth potential that proves that my idea is a winner.
Are You Still Confused About Your Product, Your Customers and How You Are Going To Make Money?
- Small Business owner: No – not at all.
- Entrepreneur: Totally! I have the idea, but I still have to specifically figure out almost everything else.
What Is Your Current Position in Your Business Planning?
- Small Business owner: I know what I want to do – I just need help to execute my plans.
- Entrepreneur: I’m still searching for the winning formula that will bring success.
What Are Your Feelings About Business Growth?
- Small Business owner: I just want to establish one successful and profitable business to secure my future.
- Entrepreneur: If possible, I would love to grow my business so that it has a global reach.
What Is Your View of Your Competitive Advantage in The Market?
- Small Business owner: I am simply replicating what others have already proven in other markets. I’ll just try and execute it best in my chosen area.
- Entrepreneur: Is huge and it will set me apart from all other competitors in the market.
Few people answer these questions 100% in favor of a Small Business or an Entrepreneur, but you’re leaning one way or another, which should give you an understanding of your mindset/intentions and so hopefully you will seek out the most appropriate advice to match.