Entrepreneurship is referred to as a process of visualizing, designing, gathering resources, launching the idea and running new business (Drucker, 2014). This process usually starts with a small business enterprise which is then expanded and developed into a successful company or organisation with the help of right skills and traits (Kirzner, 2015). The basic functions involved in it are designing the process, planning the operations, fulfilling the basic staffing needs and implementing the plans and strategies so formed (Carland, Carland and Stewart, 2015). The main factor involved in the definition is the risk element of starting a new business venture in a dynamic and competitive market with all the uncertainties prevailing in the market (Herrington and et.al, 2010). The owner of the business is known as an entrepreneur who is required to have certain skills, traits and characteristics in order to make the firm successful (Barringer, 2012). These features drive a person to create a vision and work towards achieving it (Bacq and Janssen, 2011).
The term entrepreneur defines a person who is capable and innovative enough to create an idea and develop it to turn it into a reality by using the resources available in the right manner while identifying and grabbing the opportunities to fulfil unsatisfied demands in the market (Bosma and Levie, 2010). The main feature which enables them to continuously believe and work for their idea is self motivation (Schaper and et.al, 2014). Thus, reluctance by people and leaders in the industry does not bog them down from their decision (Wennekers and et.al, 2010). They recognize a hidden need or create it which is will be satisfied through their product or service (Morris, Kuratko and Covin, 2010). The experts have observed the characteristics and traits in several famous and successful entrepreneurs and stated that only a few features are commonly found in them which guides them to their success (Storey and Greene, 2010). Regardless of their background, community, religion, race and gender, they have some common features such as (Bosma, Wennekers and Amorós, 2012):
Tenacity- The term gives essence of the features required by an entrepreneur (Bridge and O'Neill, 2012). The tenacity or determination to achieve their goal drives them (Awogbenle and Iwuamadi, 2010). An entrepreneur needs to have the mind set of commitment for working towards successful actualization of their vision (Burns, 2010). To have this feature does grantee the success of a business it implies that on failure of the process the entrepreneur starts afresh and work with the same tenacity for it (Monitor, G.E., 2010).
Passion- For a successful entrepreneur second most important feature to have is the passion (Kuratko, 2016). The zeal and dedication towards achieving the vision and goal set is what drives them (Nanda and Sørensen, 2010). The focus of a business venturer instead of making huge profits is their passion for their idea (Baum, Frese and Baron, 2014). Like every other start up entrepreneur faces problems and hardships and the passion to achieve their set target gets them through it (Webb and et.al, 2010).
Resilience- A start up business always carries the risk of failure and obstructions with it till the time it is completely accepted by industry and society (Storey, ed., 2016). Even after that a minimum risk is always present for a company (Bosma and et.al, 2012). To have patience and tolerance to go through all these phases is one of the most important feature required (Wiklund and et.al, 2011). If an entrepreneur have passion and determination but lacks tolerance to overcome hardships then it would lead to downfall of the business and its owner (Parrish, 2010).
Self belief- The key trait of a successful business owner is to have belief in self and product (Welter, 2011). The utter belief in the idea and its need in the market can only make an entrepreneur to work harder and ignore all the cynic opinions to restrict them from going further (Fisher, 2012).
Flexibility- A business operates in an dynamic and uncertain environment which makes it a necessity for the business owner to have flexibility in his business ideas and plans (Dacin, Dacin and Matear, 2010). This feature allows to respond to any uncertain changes in the market or other factors which have direct or indirect impact on the business operations (Abu-Saifan, 2012). As a business takes time to get established, during the process time the entrepreneur needs to change and adapt his product and idea to the changing market conditions (Defourny and Nyssens, 2010).
Unconventional- To perform in the market of orthodox and established players, a start up venturer needs to have an unconventional approach to divert attention of the customers form these companies towards his product (Bruton, Ahlstrom and Li, 2010). It does not necessarily mean that this approach will be immediately accepted, whereas usually it does gets criticism in the initial phase but gradually accepted when its importance is realised (Oosterbeek, Van Praag and Ijsselstein, 2010).
These characteristics and traits are what makes up an entrepreneur and his business venture a success. To further analyse these, an example is provided (George and Bock, 2011).
A famous and successful entrepreneur as well as owner of a multinational technology company Apple Inc., Steve Jobs is taken as an example (Levie and Lichtenstein, 2010). He is considered one of the most innovative and visionary entrepreneur base in the US (Karlan and Valdivia, 2011). As stated by him that people with passion have the power to change the world. Apple Inc. is the largest information technology company in the world currently (Santos, 2012). It designs, develops and sells electronic products, software and online services for its products (Brandstätter, 2011). It was founded as a personal computer kit and grew into a multinational company from there (Nicholls, 2010). The characteristics required for an entrepreneur to become successful can be observed in the mentioned business owner (Miller and et.al, 2012).
The tenacity to keep working on the project of idea and to make it a reality can be seen in Steve Jobs (Delgado, M., Porter, M.E. and Stern, S., 2010). Even when his product failed after initial few months he kept on working to make it better and after returning back to Apple, he worked even harder to make a revolutionary design for personal computers (Neck and Greene, 2011). He had an undying passion for technology and even after leaving his former company he worked in the same field to create better devices and software with NeXT and Pixar (Djankov and et.al, 2010). He lacked a bit of patience which led to his exit from Apple due to ego issues as said by many (Klein and et.al, 2010). After returning to the company he understood the necessity of resilience and this helped him to get the company back into market (Dacin, Dacin and Tracey, 2011). The opinions and criticism of many people around him and in industry could not make him belief in himself and his ideas any less (Glaeser, Kerr and Ponzetto, 2010). Rather being dismal after downfall of Apple, he reintroduced the company with more and better innovations leading to its success as known today (Short and et.al, 2010). He changed his approaches and working methods to adapt the changing environment and used unconventional ways to create new technology (Stephan and Uhlaner, 2010).
Functions of an entrepreneur
An entrepreneur is the main controller and manager of the business organisation no matter the size of it (Jones, Coviello and Tang, 2011). To design and plan the implementation of his ideas, proper strategies and approaches needs to be selected (Onetti and et.al, 2012). The owner plays most important role in the shaping up the company for leading it to success (Shane, 2012). The roles and functions can be observed as:
Planning- The first and foremost function of an role of an entrepreneur is to prepare a plan for the operating activities in the company. It includes functions of every department and set targets to be achieved in limited time period (Hall, Daneke and Lenox, 2010). Planning of each process is a lengthy and challenging task and hence is done by the owners and CEOs of the business (Samila and Sorenson, 2011).
Location- To apply the working operations so formed, a location site is required to be selected in order to set up the business (Schaltegger and Wagner, 2011). Entrepreneur search and identifies the suitable business location for the firm considering all aspects such as market, products needs and demand, availability of raw material, etc. This step forms a base for the further functions (Campbell and et.al, 2012).
Financial needs- The term better known as start up cost for a project includes the capital and funds required to install a business setup and implement the operations (Hockerts and Wüstenhagen, 2010). A company has various sources available in the market to chose appropriate method as per the company type and future needs (Koellinger and Roy Thurik, 2012). The owner needs to find an investor for the company which believes in his ability to deliver his ideas and convert them into profitable venture (Agarwal, Audretsch and Sarkar, 2010).
Acquiring tools- For a business venture to start operations, proper machines and raw material is required (Entrepreneurship: Characteristics,Importance, Types, and Functions of Entrepreneurship, 2016). These can vary according to the industry type and product or service. Along with acquiring proper machines and material, getting them at appropriate cost is also important as it will effect the further business functions (Von Graevenitz, Harhoff and Weber, 2010).
Staffing- The major asset for a business is considered its employees (The Role Of Entrepreneurship In National Development: The Story Of The Dangote Group, 2015). The function of staffing involves attracting and selecting proper candidate from a pool of job applicants to fulfil the required needs (Tracey, Phillips and Jarvis, 2011). Entrepreneur needs a strong human resource team to manage and guide the staff in order to increase efficiency and productivity of the firm (Functions of Management, 2017).
Decision making- The process of decision making is one of the crucial traits for a successful entrepreneur (Klapper, Amit and Guillén, 2010). The ability to make quick and prompt decisions when the situation requires is important as it shapes the further functions of a company (The Role of Technology to an Entrepreneur, 2017).
Identifying opportunities- The analysis of the market trends and conditions is a must in order to identify the opportunities prevailing in the market and proper methods to capture them (Sarasvathy and Venkataraman, 2011). Along with opportunities, the entrepreneur is required to access the threats and weaknesses which can hinder the working process in the firm.
Innovation- The main feature of a business venturer is the ability to be as innovative as possible according to the changing market requirements and trends (Nga and Shamuganathan, 2010). He is responsible to create innovative ideas and implement them through proper approaches. This qualifies him as a leader as well as a manager. The dual roles played by entrepreneur makes him capable to lead the organisation (Slotte‐Kock and Coviello, 2010).
Risk-taking- The last but one of the major factors related with the business venture is the risk (Braunerhjelm and et.al, 2010). An entrepreneur plays the role of a risk taker in the market for the company as he is bearer of all the losses and rewarded with profits as well. This final responsibility of an entrepreneur makes him a leader which guides and leads along with bearing all the hardships and failure (Puffer, McCarthy and Boisot, 2010).
As mentioned above, the functions performed by an entrepreneur to develop a successful business venture can be related to example of Steve Jobs (Grimaldi and et.al, 2011). As said and observed by many he was considered as the most successful entrepreneur of the era (The Qualities of Successful Entrepreneurs, 2017). The innovation of Apple and the ups and downs survived by the company made him more of a successful leader (Hitt and et.al, 2011). His leadership style is considered as complex unlike other entrepreneur which can be related to a already given theory of leadership (Martin, McNally and Kay, 2013). As an entrepreneur and leader he had immense focus on development of his ideas, confident enough to take huge risks and charismatic to acquire combination of best employees in his team as well as customers to pursue his goals rigorously (Navis and Glynn, 2010). The result of which can be seen as one of the best software for electronics Mac OS X, which became a success even after the first such software, Microsoft had captured almost the whole market (Naudé, 2010). Steve Jobs started the company but was unable to perform all the responsibilities of an entrepreneur which led to his and company's downfall (Samwel Mwasalwiba, 2010). In second phase of Apple, he came up with better decisions, innovations according to the demand and opportunities in the market (Shepherd and Patzelt, 2011).
Thus, the overall combination of entrepreneurial traits can only lead to success of a business venture (Corner and Ho, 2010). These characteristics and skills are the basic tools for a business owner to create a successful business venture (Gompers and et.al, 2010). Even the most innovative and skilled minds cannot achieve the desired results and success without having the main traits along with the roles to be played by an entrepreneur in organisation (Venkataraman and et.al, 2012).
In the above report, the meaning of an entrepreneur along with its the main characteristics and traits are explained. The features leading to a successful business venture and how they are used in the company. These characteristics observed in the entrepreneur are described with an example of a successful business venturer. Various functions and roles of a business owner in a company and their affect with examples are described. Their background and starting stages of their business are explained. The support required and received by them during their struggle and development phase is given. Along with these the enterprising theory and affection theory are also given in brief.
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