One of the most interesting effects of the digital revolution has been the democratisation of the business world. Previously, without capital and business connections, a business had to be built gradually from the ground up.
The internet, along with powerful, inexpensive technology makes huge resources widely and freely available. This gives everyone the opportunity to develop a thriving business very rapidly even without capital or connections.
As a result, the abilities and characteristics of the entrepreneur become the businesses most important assets. These ten traits separate the successful digital entrepreneur from all the rest.
Having a plan is important. Having a clear plan is even more so. A clear vision of what your business will do, how it will do it and your goals, keeps you focused and moving on the right track.
You can have the most amazing business idea but if you can’t clearly articulate it to others it will never get off the ground. You also need others, co-workers and clients, to work with you efficiently. This requires strong communication skills.
It helps to really want to do what you are doing. The road to success can be a long and difficult one. To reach the end you have to be able to keep going. A clear vision and clear goals really help keep you motivated.
David Karp, the founder of Tumblr, worked as a software consultant at UrbanBaby to fund his microblogging empire. His work eventually paid off as Yahoo! acquired Tumblr for $1.1 billion in cash in 2013.
Some call it savvy, others wit or acumen. Ultimately it boils down to understanding; understanding how the systems you are operating in work. Whether that is your area of expertise, other related areas or wider structural systems such as legislative frameworks or the economy, it is important to know how to manage them and how they can affect your business.
Being able to see an opportunity when it arises is one of the most valuable traits an entrepreneur can have. The only trait more valuable is the ability to create your own opportunity.
Irish brother's Patrick and John Collison saw a gap in the market to launch their Billion Dollar business, Stripe.
Being a tech entrepreneur requires more than just being a savvy business person. You need to understand not only the technology you are developing but the wider technology ecosystem. You need to be able to see where technologies will develop and where they will provide opportunities.
As important as vision is, it is also important not to be constrained by it. The ability to explore avenues as they arise allows you to discover new areas of possibility. What was initially the core of your business could become just a branch of a much wider and more lucrative business concept.
Just as you need to be able to diverge from your vision you also need to be able to bring it back on track when the inevitable and the unforeseen knock you off course. There are an endless number of bumps on the road to success. Adaptability allows you to deal with any and all of them.
Mistakes are an inevitable part of running a business. The difference between valuable mistakes and costly mistakes is how much you learn from them. Energy spent analysing mistakes rather than regretting them is energy well spent.
With the number of challenges every entrepreneur faces you can never afford to let any get on top of you. A tenacious entrepreneur is one that is inspired when they come up against a wall, excited by the prospect of finding a way over or around it rather than being frustrated by it. Tenacious entrepreneurs don’t give up because they don’t know how to give up.
Find out more about our degrees and short courses: