by Christan Hiscock, co-founder and CEO of Kardia
You either have it or you don’t. How many times have you heard that? Or, a business owner saying, “I was born to be an entrepreneur.” But in business and life, things are rarely that black and white.
In my experience of launching Kardia and 14 other impactful companies over the last 4 years, I’ve realized that the question of whether entrepreneurs are born or made goes a lot deeper than most people think. I’ve found that it’s not one or the other. Instead, it’s actually a combination of developing your natural born abilities and your habits, as well as your dedication and resilience muscles. That’s what really makes an effective entrepreneur.
Natural Abilities vs. Learned Skills.
It’s true — the founders of today’s top companies were born with certain abilities that made it easier for them to take the entrepreneurial path. For example, some were born with the natural capacity to continually pick themselves up after they get knocked down, and they have the confidence to keep going in spite of it, no matter how many times it happens.
As an entrepreneur, both traits are must-haves because there will most likely be those people who’ll shut down your business ideas or tell you that you’ll never be able to bring your big vision to life. Skills, like resilience and confidence, aren’t something you have or you don’t the day you’re born. Both are like muscles — some people can naturally build them faster than others, but regardless of your natural ability at the start, if you dedicate yourself to it, anyone can make them stronger over time. It just takes commitment and practice.
In my experience, and that of the other business owners in my network, excelling at entrepreneurship is more about your ability to keep yourself focused on your mission than it is about being born to it. You must look deep inside yourself, decide what you really want, and then adapt your mindset to get the motivation, confidence, and momentum you need to reach your goals.
Entrepreneurship is a combination of continuously improving your natural abilities and a commitment to learn the skills that you don’t have. Both are habits that all great business owners develop.
Entrepreneurs Are Made Through Building Habits
No matter what talents you’re born with, or which skills you decide to develop, you also have to create the habits that support your entrepreneurial journey, or you won’t go far. That’s why it’s so important to decide which habits you personally need to put in place to move you forward faster as an entrepreneur. Because everyone has different strengths, talents and skill sets, we all start in different places. Only you can decide which habits are the ones that’ll get you where you want to go.
Once you decide on the habits to put in place, it all comes down to your consistency and dedication to them. If you’re not all in, it’s unlikely that you’ll make it.
The entrepreneurs who are at the top of their game are usually obsessed with bringing their big vision to life. They’ll do almost anything it takes to go the distance. You have to be willing to do the same. That might mean waking up at 5am every morning, starting work at 7am, and scheduling time into your calendar for everything you need to do, including the time you spend with the people in your life who matter.
It will definitely mean regularly getting out of your comfort zone, trying new things, actively looking for ways to meet new people, developing your sales skills, and improving your communication skills, so you can connect with people on a deeper level. You just have to decide how you’re going to do it, and then keep doing it every day, until you reach your goal.
The best entrepreneurs don’t hope they’ll make it to the top; they do what it takes to get there. It’s the level of determination and dedication to developing the habits to excel, and then following through on them, that sets the best entrepreneurs apart from the rest.
To Wrap It All Up
Anyone can become an outstanding entrepreneur if they’re willing to build on their natural-born abilities, be open to learning what they don’t know, and develop the habits that will consistently keep them on track with their goals to bring their big vision to life. When you’re willing to do the work, and stick to it no matter what obstacles you face, you will excel as an entrepreneur.
Christan Hiscock is co-founder and CEO of Kardia and leader of 14 thriving companies. Through Kardia, which means heart in Greek, Christan is determined to bring more heart into the business world. Heart in the form of kindness, compassion and altruism. Heart that fuels, roots and guides each company to do the right things for its team members, clients and for the greater communities they serve.