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What is an Entrepreneur: Defining the Modern Businessman in [year]

Chris, Chief Editor

Updated Jan 24, 2024

Human experts evaluate all our content

Defining the modern entrepreneur / aan · truh · pruh · noor / and entrepreneurship is incredibly complex.

There are different types of entrepreneurs, each with a unique set of skills, traits, mindset, and style – as well as different business models and business courses under the umbrella of entrepreneurship.

And when I read through the top articles on the subject, it’s clear that NONE of them are written by real entrepreneurs but rather employees working for large corporations…

I’ve been on an entrepreneurial journey for the last 4 years; I started (and failed) several business endeavors until I became successful and quit my 9-5 job as an engineer. 🧬

I’ve also had the good fortune to network with high-net-worth individuals and pick their brains about business (some mentioned here).

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Adam Enfroy (left) – Chris (right)

As you read through, it might be valuable to learn a thing or two about:

  • What modern entrepreneurship really is
  • The types of business models that work in [year]
  • New and upcoming successful entrepreneurs who have made millions
  • And whether this journey is for you (or not)
entrepreneur

What Is an Entrepreneur?

An entrepreneur is an individual who launches and grows new business ventures, sometimes by sheer determination, other times through calculated planning.

You’ll often find them at the forefront of startups or online businesses, driving growth and embracing risk-taking, turning an idea into a successful business.

What Do Entrepreneurs Do?

Entrepreneurs identify market gaps and opportunities others might overlook – and take massive action to realize the idea. They bring unique products or services that solve pressing problems.

Traditional entrepreneurs such as Jeff Bezos or Steve Jobs focus on developing these opportunities into tangible business models, oftentimes leading innovation and orchestrating resources through raising capital. These ventures often grow to thousands of employees and create jobs critical to economic growth and societal progress.

The modern entrepreneur in the last few years is different, though. They operate leanly, often as a solopreneur or with a small team of other entrepreneurs to drive massive revenue and exponential growth quickly.

What’s more important for the modern entrepreneur is not to innovate but to fill in market gaps with products or services that perform slightly better than what is already offered, coupled with genius marketing strategies.

And with the advent of AI increasingly replacing jobs, today’s opportunities are endless for entrepreneurs to make money online in small, effective teams.

Entrepreneur vs Business Owner?

Entrepreneur: You bring original ideas to life, striving for innovation and representing leadership in uncharted territories. Your vision often leads to creating new markets or revolutionizing existing ones, and you’re willing to face significant risks for potentially high rewards.

Business Owner: You focus on sustaining and growing an established business model. Stability, steady income, and operations management are likely your primary concerns, as opposed to the entrepreneur’s emphasis on groundbreaking ideas and market disruption.

What Are the Characteristics of Successful Entrepreneurs?

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No matter what type of business model entrepreneurs use as the vehicle for success, they all share similar characteristics that pave the way for their achievements.

As you learn from them by consuming their wisdom, buying their courses, and hiring them as mentors, you’ll notice distinct mindsets, traits, skills, and styles amongst all of them that most likely contribute to their business successes.

1. Entrepreneur Mindset

Successful entrepreneurs exhibit a resilient mindset, maintaining their drive even through setbacks, and this is very important in the business world as you’ll inevitably face adversity.

Your mindset should revolve around abundance and long-term thinking; this means seeing beyond immediate challenges and focusing on future possibilities.

An entrepreneur’s vision lays the groundwork for what their venture can become, often requiring a balance of realistic expectations and innovative thinking.

2. Entrepreneur Traits

Key traits include leadership and the ability to identify and solve problems consistently.

Leadership is critical as it influences every decision in your business, from personnel to strategy. Qualities like being money savvy play a vital role in ensuring financial stability.

Successful entrepreneurs are not just dreamers but doers; their constant drive to improve and execute their ideas sets them apart from the masses.

3. Entrepreneur Skills

In the realm of skills, sales and marketing knowledge stands out.

Effective entrepreneurs know how to promote their ideas and translate them into revenue. They are adept at networking with other high-value entrepreneurs, which provide immense and valuable insights, opportunities, and mentorship.

Strategic thinking to stay focused on key business objectives while being able to adapt, hence flexibility, is critical for navigating the ever-changing business landscape.

4. Entrepreneur Style

The entrepreneur’s style often reflects their brand and can play a part in showing status and making a memorable impression.

This doesn’t necessarily mean lavish spending but can be seen in tasteful choices like quality watches, leather goods, or cigars. They understand that grooming, staying in shape, and presenting themselves in a certain light is a net positive ROI for business.

Your style is a tool for projecting confidence, professionalism, and attention to detail, all essential in fostering trust and furthering the entrepreneur’s business goals.

For example, would you, as a business owner, lend $2 million to an entrepreneur who shows up at a dinner meeting with a cheap suit and dirt beneath his fingernails? The answer is no, you wouldn’t. Professionalism and trust go a long way in the business world.

What Are The Different Types of Entrepreneurs?

Entrepreneurship manifests in various forms, each with distinctive approaches to business and innovation. Understanding the kind of entrepreneur you are (or have to deal with) shapes how you bring ideas to life and build your product or team.

Creator (Content)

You might be a Creator if you craft original content as the core of your business.

Typically, you leverage platforms like blogs, YouTube, or podcasts to share knowledge or entertainment. Your creativity engages a community and often leads to monetization through ads, sponsorships, affiliates, or merch.

Builder (Code)

As a Builder, coding is your tool for constructing innovative products.

You turn complex code into functional, user-friendly, AI-powered software, apps, or platforms. In this role, your technical prowess meets with forward-thinking to develop solutions that improve everyday tasks for individuals and teams.

Idea Generator (Team)

If you excel at brainstorming and strategizing, you fall into the category of Idea Generator.

Your strength lies in envisioning new concepts and mobilizing a team to bring these ideas to fruition. Not only do you inspire with vision, but you also have the knack for assembling a diverse and skilled team to nail the execution.

Side-Hustler

The Side-Hustler is adept at juggling a primary job while growing a business venture on the side.

Your entrepreneurial activities might start as a passion project, but through dedication, they evolve into a full-fledged business. Balancing both, you’re proof that incredible ideas and products can spring from balancing multiple commitments.

What Are The Different Types of Entrepreneurship?

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Entrepreneurship manifests in various forms, each with unique characteristics, objectives, and operational scales.

Recognizing the diversity among entrepreneurs offers insights into how businesses operate and grow within the economy.

Part-Time

Part-time entrepreneurship allows you to start a business while maintaining a separate job or commitment. It reduces the risk as you have a steady income while exploring your entrepreneurial venture. This approach is common for new entrepreneurs to validate their business ideas before a full-scale launch.

Online Business

Online businesses capitalize on the internet’s vast reach to sell products or provide services. With lower overhead costs, you can operate from anywhere at any time. Innovation in digital marketing and e-commerce platforms provides online business owners with tools to compete effectively in the market.

Creator (Social Media)

Content creators on social media platforms turn hobbies into lucrative careers. They produce regular content to build a following, often leading to brand partnerships and sponsorships. Your creativity and engagement with your audience are critical in this sphere.

Small Business Owner

As a small business owner, you manage a business that serves a local or niche market. Small businesses are integral to the economy, driving local development and innovation. The Small Business Administration can be a resource for support, funding, and guidance.

Startup with a Growth Focus

Startups with a growth focus aim for rapid market expansion and significant revenue increase. Investors play a vital role in providing the funding needed for product development and scaling. Securing investment involves demonstrating the potential for exceptional growth and return on investment.

Large Scale Company

Leading a large-scale company entails overseeing a business with extensive operations, often national or international. Success requires a robust understanding of the global economy, substantial investment, and a commitment to continuous innovation and market adaptability.

How to Become a Successful Entrepreneur?

To embark on your entrepreneurial journey, research and learning is your starting point.

You need to understand the market, how it works, and what you can bring of value. Analyzing your target market reveals customer needs and the problems you aim to solve with your product or service.

Embrace the qualities synonymous with successful entrepreneurs: resilience, adaptability, and a relentless pursuit of their visions. Your passion for progression and growth should drive you to overcome challenges and inspire your team.

Seeking guidance from a mentor is a proven and invaluable resource to save time, avoid costly mistakes, and learn from someone already in your shoes doing what you aim to do NOW.

Mentors and courses provide insight, advice, and support to navigate the difficult road of entrepreneurship and trust me; it IS extremely difficult.

Who Are Successful Entrepreneurs with Courses I Can Learn From?

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If you’re seeking knowledge and skills to kickstart your entrepreneurial journey (which you should!), learning from successful entrepreneurs is a proven method that I highly recommend.

These experts possess wealth and experience and offer courses to mentor and guide aspiring entrepreneurs through the intricate path of business ownership. Below is a small collection of the most popular entrepreneurs with business courses you can learn more from today.

Luke Belmar

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Luke Belmar is a young, rising, and recognized entrepreneur with a knack for digital marketing and scaling online businesses. His online course Capital Club provides you with essential marketing skills to grow your business online.

Iman Gadzhi

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Iman Gadzhi, renowned for his expertise in agency growth, has curated courses that impart critical strategies for effectively scaling a service-based business in the SMMA sphere (Social Media Marketing Agency).

Adam Enfroy

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With a focus on affiliate marketing and a blogging-based business, Adam Enfroy’s teachings help you harness the power of the internet to establish a profitable online brand.

Matt Diggity

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SEO master Matt Diggity offers a course that delves into search engine optimization, giving your website the visibility it needs to make money online.

Andrew Tate

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Andrew Tate brings his diverse business expertise with an entire educational platform loaded with the most common online business models designed to pivot your strategies toward business success.

Grant Cardone

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Known for his success in sales and real estate, Grant Cardone provides courses that not only enhance your selling skills but also expand your vision for entrepreneurship.

Ramit Sethi

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Ramit Sethi’s courses on personal finance and psychology in business help sharpen your acumen for creating value in your endeavors.

Dean Graziosi

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Real estate mogul Dean Graziosi shares his property investment knowledge, equipping you with skills to excel in the real estate sector.

Sebastian Ghiorghiu

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Sebastian Ghiorghiu guides you through e-commerce with courses to maximize your online store profitability.

Sam Ovens

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Consultant Sam Ovens transforms your consulting approach through structured courses, bolstering your ability to advise effectively.

Kevin King

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Kevin King’s specialty in Amazon FBA is shared through in-depth courses, offering valuable insights into dominating this marketplace.

Who Are the Most Famous Entrepreneurs?

When exploring the entrepreneurship landscape, you’ll encounter visionaries who have redefined the boundaries of innovation and leadership.

Steve Jobs, co-founder of Apple Inc., was an iconic figure whose mastery of consumer desires revolutionized how you interact with technology. We would not live in the smartphone world we live in today without his invention of the iPhone. changing how we communicate and access information daily.

Mark Zuckerberg transitioned from a Harvard student to spearheading a social media revolution with the creation of Facebook, now part of Meta Platforms. His knowledge of social dynamics and clear vision resulted in a platform that connects billions. Zuckerberg’s rise showcases the potential of digital entrepreneurship.

Let’s not forget other pioneers who laid the groundwork for today’s entrepreneurs. Their success stories embody the definition of a successful entrepreneur: someone who combines knowledge, leadership, and an innovative vision to create something unprecedented.

Notable EntrepreneursCompanies FoundedIndustry Impact
Elon MuskTesla, SpaceX, NeuralinkRevolutionized electric vehicles, space exploration, and neural technology
Jeff BezosAmazon, Blue OriginTransformed online retail and space exploration
Bill GatesMicrosoftPioneered personal computing and software development
Steve JobsApple, PixarInnovated in personal electronics, animation
Mark ZuckerbergFacebook, Instagram, WhatsAppRedefined social media and online communication
Warren BuffettBerkshire HathawayTransformed investment and finance
Larry Page & Sergey BrinGoogleRevolutionized internet search and online advertising
Jack MaAlibaba GroupPioneered e-commerce and technology in China
Richard BransonVirgin GroupDiversified entrepreneurship in music, airlines, space
Oprah WinfreyHarpo ProductionsInfluenced media, publishing, and philanthropy

These entrepreneurs have taken bold steps to deliver new products and reshape entire industries, consistently demonstrating what it means to be a visionary leader.

What Types of Entrepreneurial Business Models Are There?

Entrepreneurship takes various forms, each with unique strategies and outcomes that you may find suitable for your business endeavors. Below are the types of entrepreneurial online business models to consider in [year].

Blogging

Blogging allows you to publish and monetize content through ads, sponsorships, affiliate marketing, and content marketing. Your blog could become a hub for valuable information within a niche market or a broad audience.

Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing promotes other people’s products and earns commissions for each sale or lead. This model is performance-based and often paired with blogging or social media.

Lead Gen

Lead generation involves attracting and converting prospects into someone interested in your products or services. You may use various digital marketing techniques to capture these leads.

Social Media Marketing Agency

A Social Media Marketing Agency provides businesses with expertise in growing their brand’s presence on platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter (now called X). Your agency could manage campaigns, content creation, and analytics.

Creator

Creators produce original content, products, or services and often leverage personal branding. You may use platforms like Patreon to support your work or sell directly to your audience.

YouTube

YouTube provides a platform for publishing video content, which can be monetized through ads, sponsorships, or directing viewers to merchandise or external websites.

Freelancing

Freelancing offers services on a contract basis in areas like writing, design, programming, or consulting. This model gives you flexibility and the potential for a diverse client base.

Online Courses

Online courses let you package your expertise into a product that delivers valuable skills or knowledge. You may sell these courses on your website or through educational platforms.

Membership

A membership model involves recurring payments from your community in exchange for ongoing services or exclusive content. It’s a way to build a steady income stream.

Community

Building a community revolves around creating a dedicated space for people with shared interests. This could be a forum, social media group, or an offline member club.

Coaching

Coaching and consulting offer personalized guidance and support, typically in specific areas of expertise such as business, life skills, or personal development.

E-Commerce

E-commerce involves selling goods online through your website or marketplaces. You handle inventory, fulfillment, and customer service to provide a seamless shopping experience.

Amazon FBA

Amazon FBA (Fulfillment by Amazon) allows you to store your products in Amazon’s fulfillment centers. Amazon takes care of storage, packaging, and shipping for you.

Dropshipping

Dropshipping is a retail method where you sell products but don’t keep goods in stock. When a customer purchases, the order is shipped directly from the supplier.

Self-Publishing

Self-publishing gives authors control over the paperback, audiobook, and ebook publishing process. You write and publish your work, responsible for marketing and distribution, often through platforms like Amazon KDP.

Print on Demand

Print on Demand allows you to sell custom designs on products like t-shirts or merch without inventory. Products are only printed and shipped when a customer makes a purchase, similar to dropshipping.

Saas

Software as a Service (SaaS) is a software distribution model where you provide access to your technology on a subscription basis. You maintain the servers and software while users access it via the internet.

Apps

Developing apps involves creating software applications for mobile or desktop devices. Your app could serve many functions, from entertainment to productivity tools.

Is Entrepreneurship Right for You?

Deciding to become an entrepreneur is a significant step that involves careful consideration of your goals, willingness to face uncertainties, and readiness to handle harsh challenges.

The following section will help you determine if entrepreneurship aligns with your personal and professional aspirations.

Pros and Cons of Entrepreneurship

Pros:

  • Autonomy: You have the freedom to make decisions and steer the business in the direction you desire.
  • Flexibility: Your schedule can be more flexible than traditional employment.
  • Potential Rewards: Financial and personal gratification is substantial – IF your business succeeds.

Cons:

  • Unpredictability: Income is irregular, especially in the early stages.
  • Responsibility: You carry the weight of the entire business’s success or failure.
  • Workload: You often face a heavy and diverse workload.

Risks

  • Financial Risk: Investing personal capital without guaranteed returns is a standard requirement.
  • Market Risk: Your product or service may not gain the desired traction due to market saturation or shifts.
  • Competition: Staying ahead of, or even just keeping up with competitors requires constant innovation and adaptation.

Time

  • Startup Phase: Long hours are typical when establishing your business.
  • Growth Phase: You may find yourself constantly involved in operations, marketing, management, and more. You have to assess if the investment of your time aligns with your long-term personal and professional goals.

Stress

The pressure to perform and the uncertainty of outcomes generate significant stress. Balancing business demands with personal life often requires careful juggling, which not everyone is comfortable with or capable of managing.

Common Obstacles to Succeed in Entrepreneurship?

When you embark on your entrepreneurial journey, you’ll encounter various challenges that require your attention and problem-solving skills.

Market conditions greatly affect your venture’s success, as does stiff competition, which is omnipresent in nearly every industry. You must accurately assess the market and find a unique selling proposition to set your business apart.

Funding and financing are often the most pressing obstacles you’ll face. Securing enough capital through loans, crowdfunding, or investors is vital to cover initial costs like resources, talent, and labor. This financial aspect is even more critical in volatile economies, where cash flow management becomes a tightrope walk.

Access to resources and land can be limited by geographic or economic barriers. Negotiating leases or purchases for physical spaces can strain your budget and alter your business plan. Furthermore, attracting and retaining skilled talent is another hurdle, as you compete not just for customers but for capable employees as well.

Lastly, navigating the complex landscape of regulations, licenses, and permits demands your time and attention. Being aware of these potential roadblocks and preparing strategies to overcome them will give you a more robust foundation for your entrepreneurial success.

Chris Starkhagen MSc.

Entrepreneur and Founder of chrisstarkhagen.com

Chris writes for men about what to know and how to be a high-value man and networking with high-net-worth individuals. Chris guides readers on men’s business, men’s home office, men’s performance, men’s accessories, and the best products for men to craft a timeless style. Whether you’re already a high net-worth man seeking your next luxury watch or a young G who wants a lifestyle upgrade, Chris connects men with the resources needed to elevate life as a man.