Leveraging Your Entrepreneurial Strengths
NOTE: This is the first in a series of 10 posts on the subject of coaching entrepreneurs. If you want to be sure not to miss these, you can subscribe to my list so they appear in your inbox.
Do you have what it takes to be a successful entrepreneur? What exactly does it take to be a successful entrepreneur? According to Jim Clifton, Chairman of Gallop and author of a new Entrepreneurial Assessment called EP10, there are 10 specific entrepreneurial strengths which drive the world’s most successful entrepreneurs. The EP10 measures the intensity of these traits, giving you access to knowledge and self awareness that serves you in building and growing your business.
The author specifies that this assessment is not a definitive source for determining whether you should or should not become an entrepreneur. It does provide awareness around your natural aptitude which helps you determine how and if you could either outsource or create more focus around certain areas.
When coaching entrepreneurs, I always start by using this assessment. It gives me valuable insight into how best to support them, and is an incredible tool for the entrepreneur to begin to understand their own natural talents. It tends to explain a lot!
You may be wondering what the 10 traits are? Of course we all want to “measure up” when it comes to talent, and the danger of this assessment is that once the results are reviewed, it can bring up some feelings of inadequacy. You know exactly what I mean, don’t you? We tend to focus on what we don’t have more than what we have.
If viewed with the proper perspective, it serves as an amazing tool for leveraging your natural strengths and accommodating those gaps in your skillset. If your mission is to succeed, and you’re willing to take an honest look at your available resources, it’s an amazing resource.
Here are the 10 talents:
Knowledge Seeker Creative Thinker Business Focus Risk-Taker Determination Relationship-Builder Delegator Independent Confidence Promoter
When I first looked at this list of strengths, I formed an idea, based on the one or two word description, of which talents I possess. Turns out there were a few surprises for me, once I actually took the assessment! When I read the detailed description of where my natural talent lined up in each area, it made perfect sense. I was personally well served by knowing where my talent gaps were, and where my genius lives.
My practice has always been to focus on strengths; leveraging that, rather than spending energy attempting to improve weaknesses. This is especially helpful when you are an entrepreneur, and you are potentially doing everything in your business. You may be really great at selling your product, and not so great at organizing receipts. Yet each function is important to the success of your business.
The key is to see this, and to be willing to consider the value of outsourcing those tasks or responsibilities rather than doing them poorly. What is the impact of having unorganized or inadequate financial records to the overall profitability and measurement of your business? You, as the entrepreneur, get to decide this.
As a business coach to entrepreneurs, our first work together is focused on creating extreme clarity about the use of one’s time. Time, it seems, is our most valuable commodity. Many of us actually enter business ownership for the time freedom we imagine it will bring to us. No more boss looking over our shoulder telling us what to do and when to do it.
We want the kind of freedom we imagined we’d have if we’re calling the shots, and yet by not being organized and intentional, we run the risk of having even less time freedom. Entrepreneurs never punch out. We don’t generally get time away where we are not somehow thinking about our business. It’s a blessing and a curse.
Things work best when we don’t trade one brand of prison for another. It’s essential to surround yourself with various skillsets, whether you beg, borrow, or trade, or buy the right to use those talents. Doing things you’re not good at will not only put your business success at risk, it will also suck the life out of you, task by task.
Business is fun. Being an entrepreneur is equally challenging and rewarding. It’s not for people who live in excuse-land. It’s only for those that are brave enough to take an honest look at themselves, and to be willing to grow and change and ask for help. It’s an adventure like no other, and like any adventure, it’s great to have the right resources in your suitcase.
Using the EP-10 is wise, as is hiring a business coach. Surrounding yourself with talented people who offer different perspectives is useful too. Leveraging your natural born talent is just one component for creating a phenomenally successful business
P.S. If you'd like to join a diverse community of entrepreneurs, consider attending The Entrepreneur Cafe Series, each 3rd Saturday in Studio C.
*This article was originally written for Small Biz Forward .
Contact Coach Charrise by calling 574.971.5234, emailing [email protected], or completing the form below:
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