Entrepreneurs come in all shapes and sizes. For the most part, they’re great people.

But there are three entrepreneurs you never want to meet. See if you recognize one or more of them.

Head in the clouds

Some entrepreneurs have their head in the clouds. We’re not talking about the 30,000 foot view here. It’s good to see the big picture, as long as that’s not all you see. 

No, these entrepreneurs suffer from delusions of grandeur. Listen to them for even a small amount of time and you’ll realize that they see nothing but blue sky.

And boy, do they have a lot of ideas. These ideas fly around faster than UFOs on a dark night.

No matter how strong or significant their competition, they will take them down in no time at all. If they have any competition at all, that is.

Because to hear them tell it, they don’t have any competition. Their idea is so insightful and so unique. No one has ever thought about it before.

They keep busy floating from one idea to another. So, they don’t ever make time to actually create a plan.

Why would they? Planning is work. It’s more fun to just touch the surface of their ideas.

If they really dug deep, things would get complex. They would have to do some real analysis. They might learn that their idea isn’t as good as they thought.

So, they just remain stuck with their head in the clouds.

Head up their ass

Other entrepreneurs have their head up their ass. Time after time, they make the wrong decision.

They rationalize every single one of them. But the reality is that they aren’t running their business logically. It is run by their emotions and ego.

Their ego is fragile. They can’t handle any counter opinions. So, they surround themselves with the wrong people. They may be full- or part-time staff. They may be outside consultants or suppliers.

The contractual relationship doesn’t matter. They all have one thing in common – they are “yes” people. They will continue to stroke the entrepreneur’s ego as long as they keep getting a check.

So, the entrepreneur never gets the help he or she needs. Eventually, the business goes down the toilet.

Then, and only then, do all of these people talk about how much the head of the business stinks.

Head up their ass and in the clouds

Then, there are the really special entrepreneurs. They have their head so far up their ass, it’s in the clouds. Picture it – it’s a funny visual!

But the results certainly aren’t. They combine the worst traits of the two types we’ve already discussed – a fragile ego with delusions of grandeur.

They don’t have a plan or a strategy, so they aren’t able to link tactics to the strategy.

They have neither long-term nor short-term goals, so their people don’t know what is expected of them. They don’t track their most important metrics because nobody knows what’s important.

They don’t get ahead. They float. They only face up to reality when circumstances dictate. These entrepreneurs usually get flushed out pretty fast.

Head in the game

So, those are the three entrepreneurs that you never want to meet. Most importantly, you don’t want to see one of these types in the mirror.

So, how can you avoid it?

  • Vision. Your vision should stretch you. It should excite you. It should be shared with your people. It should excite them. But, it should be grounded in reality.
  • Values. Know what you stand for. And realize that what you stand for may limit your ability to compete in certain industries. In fact, you may choose not to compete at all. Find a different business.
  • Milestones. Milestones help keep you on schedule. They help you know what metrics are important to track. You won’t build a great business overnight, but you’ll know whether you’re on track if you have deadlines for your dreams.
  • Strategy. Your strategy connects your goals to your vision. You should have a road map to reach your planned destination. But, you should also be prepared to quickly take a detour as you gain new information about the marketplace.
  • Support. It is lonely at the top. Reach out to others for your own mental and emotional well-being. Network with fellow entrepreneurs. Get a mentor or a coach. And when you hire people, make sure that they share your vision and values, but bring a different perspective to your business.

While we’ve poked fun at three fictitious types of entrepreneurs, the sad part is that they actually exist. You can avoid being one of them by executing around your plan.

How do you keep your head in the game? Please share your tips in the comments below.