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10 Traits of Successful Entrepreneurs by Kevin Sudbury - HTML preview

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Trait 1: Entrepreneurs Take Risks

There is no guarantee in business. You’ve probably heard the stats of how somewhere around 95% of businesses fail in the first five years. Perhaps you even remember the Dot Com boom and bust around the turn of the century, where plenty of tech businesses folded and went under.

Sometimes even a “sure thing” can go off the rails. For example, when was the last time you logged into your MySpace.com account? Do you even have a MySpace account?

Or when was the last time you used the Alta Vista search engine? (Hint: Alta Vista redirects to Yahoo! now, but you probably haven’t used that search engine all that much either.)

The point is, businesses like MySpace used to be huge. No one thought they’d disappear. But a competitor came along and pretty much wiped out the majority of their market share. It happens.

So here’s the question: would you be able to start a business, even though doing so is a risk? It could mean spending months or years of your life working on something that doesn’t pan out. You could invest a lot of money that you may never get back.

Would you take the chance anyway?

Successful entrepreneurs do to these sorts of chances. They’re risk takers.

However, here’s the key…

They’re not taking silly risks, like putting one’s life savings on a spin of the roulette wheel in Vegas. Instead, smart entrepreneurs take calculated risks. That means they do research and collect as much information as possible before they make major decisions.

For example, it’s always a risk to invest the time and money to create a new product in your niche. It might be a raging success and become your #1 bestseller. Or it could flop so badly that you kick yourself for wasting so much time.

However, you can mitigate the risk by doing your market research first. That way, you know if people are already buying similar products. If they are, then you can create the product. If the product flops, it may just be a question of tweaking the sales letter, the unique selling position or even the sales process.

Is it still a risk? You bet. But now it’s a calculated risk, meaning you have a better chance of success. Nonetheless, if taking on that sort of calculated risk gives you heart palpitations, you might reconsider whether this whole self-employed thing is for you.

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