The United States now has an estimated 27 million entrepreneurs. That’s 14% of the population, a record high for the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor, which has been tracking these figures for nearly two decades.
These days it seems everyone is either starting a business or knows someone who is. And yet in reality, entrepreneurship is far from the glamourous high life some high-profile impresarios would have you believe. It’s a tough and often lonely road, and it’s not for everyone.
If you’re thinking of making the leap into entrepreneurship, consider these nine signs the lifestyle might not be the right fit for you.
Risk Makes You Uncomfortable
If there’s one thing that’s certain in entrepreneurship, it’s risk. Leaving the safety net of a 9-to-5 is the first big leap, and there are many more to be made after that.
Whether it’s putting your own savings on the line, devoting years of your life to a venture that might not pan out, or taking a chance on a fledgling investment opportunity, there’s always some risk required to get you to the next phase in the entrepreneurship game.
If you’re uncomfortable with taking a gamble, there’s going to be a whole lot of discomfort ahead for you as an entrepreneur.
You’re A Perfectionist
Perfectionism is a dream killer. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to do a good job, but perfection itself is unattainable.
When you launch a business, things are inevitably going to go wrong. Lots of things. Your success depends on how quickly and effectively you respond to these mishaps, not your ability to avoid them in the first place.
If you can’t let go of your quest for perfection, you’re going to be sorely disappointed time and time again as an entrepreneur.
You’re In It To Get Rich
But wait! Becoming an entrepreneur is how Mark Cuban and Jeff Bezos made their billions!
True, but they’re the 1%. Actually, they’re the very top fraction of the 1%.
For every entrepreneur who strikes it rich, there are hundreds of thousands of others who are simply getting by. A 2013 survey put the average American entrepreneur’s salary at $68,000 annually—not chump change, but certainly not the millions you may have had in mind.
If you’re looking for a huge salary up front, you’re better off pursuing a corporate job with a steady upward-trending pay scale. You certainly can become wealthy as an entrepreneur, but it can take years and it’s never a guarantee.
You Have A Procrastination Problem
Being your own boss is one of the biggest draws of entrepreneurship… and one of its biggest challenges. If there’s no one looking over your shoulder setting deadlines and giving orders, will the work get done?
If you often find yourself struggling to take action on your ideas or putting things off even when they’ll help you move closer toward your goals, your procrastinating may get in the way of your entrepreneurial success.
You’re A Micromanager
Real wealth lies in scalable businesses. It’s impossible to scale a business if you insist on having a hand in every facet of its operation.
To be a truly successful entrepreneur, you have to hire strong leaders and feel confident putting the work in their hands. If you believe there’s only one right way to get something done (and it always happens to be your way), entrepreneurship is going to be an uphill battle for you.
You Don’t Believe In Spending Money To Make Money
The old mantra is true: you have to spend money to make money. And if you’re not willing to invest in your business, then what does that say about how much you truly believe in it?
If you’re passionate and serious about growing a successful business venture, you have to be willing to put your money where your mouth is. You’ll need to invest in marketing, systems, research and people that will help your business rise to the top.
Can you start a business without a lot of money? Sure. In fact, we share how to do it for $10,000 or less in this post. But if the thought of investing even $10K in your business makes your stomach turn, entrepreneurship is not for you.
You Get Bored Easily
Some people think a good entrepreneur has to be an idea guy—someone who’s always thinking of the next big thing. Yes, this can be true, but it’s not a necessity and can even be a barrier.
If you’re constantly getting bored and moving from one thing to the next, you might not have the endurance it takes to keep hammering away until you find success.
Persistence is one of the most important characteristics of an entrepreneur who’s destined to win. If you’re easily distracted by the next shiny thing, you might have the chops to make it as an entrepreneur.
You Pass The Buck
As we mentioned earlier, things are going to wrong in your business. When they do, your team will look to you to lead them forward. How you respond in the face of a setback sets the tone for your entire organization.
Do you accept blame and look for a solution, or do you pass the buck and seek out a scapegoat? A good leader takes responsibility for his missteps and shares praise liberally after wins. If you like to blame others—even when it’s truly not your fault!—you may not have what it takes to cut it in the business world.
You’d Be Ruined If You Lost It All
One thing all successful entrepreneurs have in common is that they put it all on the line, day in and day out.
Ask yourself this: if I lost it all tomorrow, would I be able to pick up the pieces? Or would I be shattered, paralyzed by the loss?
If losing your wealth, your business or your status would break you, you’re not in the right mental state to become an entrepreneur.
So what’s the verdict—do you have what it takes? If the answer’s yes, click below and join our tribe of profitable entrepreneurs who are on the road to success!