I asked Carol Roth, the author of the New York Times bestselling book, The Entrepreneur Equation, to give me her opinion of whether entrepreneurs are born or made. 

While quipping that it was the question everyone asks, she believes that while there is nature involved, meaning someone might be more predisposed to entrepreneurship, a big part is determined by nurture.

Specifically, your early years. 

Accept failure as inevitable

When you were a kid, were you allowed to fail? Did you feel like you always had to have the right answer? Or, were you punished for getting things wrong? 

If so, you may have to work through separating your self-esteem and identity from a failure in your business. If something doesn’t work in your business, that doesn’t mean that you’re a failure as a person, or that you are a bad person. 

Please note: Aspects of your business will not go as planned. 

You will experience failures. It is inevitable. So, if you are not okay with failing and learning and iterating, you might want to consider being an employee. 

Carol says you need to learn to fail fast and not make the same mistake twice. 

Get comfortable with discomfort

Related to coming to terms with failure is being okay in chaos and uncertainty, because you will experience that as well. 

Even with a franchise where you are following a plan and system that has worked, there will be uncertainty, missed timelines, cash flow issues, staffing problems, and a host of other unexpected snafus. Guaranteed. 

Know your preferred role

Carol often suggests that people consider whether they are Santa or an elf. Santa is the person in charge of creating the vision and giving the orders. Elves follow the orders and get things done. Elves are important, but might not be comfortable having the leadership role that entrepreneurship requires. 

I think you’ll enjoy this short video. 

Photo by Cherrydeck on Unsplash