Wednesday, July 30, 2014

10 Mindsets of Successful Entrepreneurs

Entrepreneurs come in all different sizes, shapes and colors. They all have a different mindset that helps contribute to their success. Perhaps this mindset has to do with their personality or the field they've chosen to work in. Here are some examples of mindsets from 10 well-known and successful entrepreneurs.
  1. Reach out to the customer first. According to Greg Gianforte, it may seem like product development should come first, this is the wrong approach. After to moving to Montana with his family, he decided to focus on the tech sector which he had a lot of experience in. Instead of unveiling a new prototype for a product, he started by getting on the phone with potential customers. This led to conversations about what kind of product they would buy.
  2. Find a new market for an existing product.  Sam Phillips, founder of Sun Records surely did not invent Rock 'n Roll, but his small Memphis label will forever be linked to its beginnings. He established this studio and record label as a way to capture the interaction of both country and blues music, which he was already familiar with as a DJ. He eventually discovered musicians such as Elvis, Johnny Cash and Jerry Lee Lewis.
  3. Use networking to build your business. Many entrepreneurs are aware of the importance of networking, but few know actually how to do it. According to Jason Nazar, CEO of, he owes part of success to his networking efforts. He used networking to raise $4 million in startup funds. According to Nazar, first, measure the return on investment you are getting from your networking efforts. Second, make sure you give something of value first when making connections instead of trying to ask for something in the beginning. 
  4. Give without expecting a return. Author James Altucher believes that opportunities come your way when you offer something without looking for a payback. He regularly sends out ideas to people whom he would like to do business with and asks for nothing in return. Sometimes he won't even receive a response, but sometimes, when he does, the results are magical.
  5. Keep control of your vision. Jack Ma, founder of Hong Kong's wholesale eCommerce site, Alibaba, keeps debating going public with an IPO, but Ma wants to keep a tight control of his company. This is a difficult task especially when investors enter the picture and want to have a say in your business. Ma believes in his vision for his company and the culture he has created to get the job done.
  6. Understand the power of brand. Filmmaker George Lucas, saw there was so much more to Star Wars than a pop culture phenomenon. To George, the first trilogy of films and the three additional movies that followed became a powerful brand. This brand became a spring board to lucrative licensing deals from live attractions, toys, memorabilia, and even video games.
  7. Focus your energy on what's good for your business. Jay Z owns a nightclub, a clothing line, a sports franchise and even has a few best selling albums. His success is based in part on his focus. He refuses to spend time on anything that does not expand his entrepreneurial ventures. 
  8. Always maintain quality control. From the age of fourteen, Lionel Puoilane, had an obsession with the quality of bread that bore his family's name. He later became world famous for the artisan crafted bread baked in wood fired ovens. As international demand for his bread grew, he continually refused to mass produce his product. He insisted that each loaf still be hand crafted by a baker personally trained in his techniques.
  9. Set your product apart. The idea to create a product that stands alone is nothing new. In 1783, the Primrose brothers promised to produce crystal as fine as any in Europe leading to the Waterford brand being born. The brothers had a technique of combining both glass and minerals to produce crystal that actually "sings"when tapped with the finger became renowned. Their crystals are also known for deep and ornate carvings created by skilled artisans that give it a distinct appearance. 
  10. Take Ownership. Oprah Winfrey experienced success as a broadcaster and even in the entertainment industry even before launching the Oprah Winfrey Show in 1986. After some initial TV and radio jobs, she hosted a successful chat show in Baltimore and later a show in Chicago that beat Phil Donahue in local ratings. It wasn't until after taking ownership of her talk show from ABC that Winfrey's entrepreneurial skills became coming into focus.
To read more about successful entrepreneurs and their mindsets, click here.