“Think big and don’t listen to people who tell you it can’t be done. Life’s too short to think small.” - Tim Ferris
Entrepreneurs take financial risks and work long hours trying to build a business from the ground up. If you think about it, it’s a downright harrowing ordeal. Why would anybody want to go through with it?
It’s because, despite the ups and downs, there are moments of joy and satisfaction and, at the end of the tunnel, if you’re committed enough, is a substantial reward. Those moments and rewards are different for everybody, but if you look at it carefully, there are four main reasons that drive most entrepreneurs:
The majority of entrepreneurs get into business at least partially because of the potential to make lots of money. Reading stories about entrepreneurial geniuses like Richard Branson and Mark Zuckerberg make it seem possible for any enthusiastic person out there with a good idea to become billionaire in a short amount of time.
This isn’t quite how it works, but any dedicated entrepreneur with a good idea and great timing can make a lot more money than they ever could in a traditional job. There’s nothing wrong with pursuing money, we all need it to survive, right? But if substantial wealth is the only thing driving you, you risk becoming frustrated and potentially giving up if you don’t make a profit in the first couple of years.
Then there are the entrepreneurs who venture out on their own because they’re sick and tired of the demands of their traditional jobs. In a high-level position, the demands are exceptional - working long hours, running to the beck and call of your bosses and clients, and being stuck in the same old rut of responsibilities.
Being your own boss frees you from those restraints. You can work your own hours, wherever you feel like working, and set your own goals and responsibilities. Entrepreneurship is extremely demanding, especially in the early stages of growth, so working your own hours doesn’t always mean working less hours or having less stress. Actually many new entrepreneurs find that they work harder, longer, and under tighter constraints than they did as employees - but it’s so much more rewarding.
The desire to have some kind of control over their own lives drives many people into entrepreneurship. When you’re a business owner, you’ll get to call all the shots, from who gets hired, what salary is paid to what new directions your business will follow.
Entrepreneurs have full control over every decision made. Of course, you’ll also take on the additional stress and pressure that go along with that responsibility. You’ll get the privilege and excitement of setting the course for your business, but you’ll have only yourself to blame if it veers off-course.
4. Creating a Legacy.
For some entrepreneurs a lasting legacy outweighs the money or the experience. They might want to become the face of a brand and get a taste of fame along the way. They might want to leave behind something that appreciates them, or they might want to pass the business on to a future generation. The point is, they want to create something meaningful that’s going to outlast them. This motivation is one of the strongest for entrepreneurs, because it can’t be achieved in any other way, and it lasts much longer than money or experience.
Which of these 4 reasons drives you the most? Hopefully, you’re motivated by more than one of them - the more driven you are, the less intimidated you’re going to be when challenges arise along your journey. Before you dive into becoming an entrepreneur, it’s important to know exactly what it is that you want out of the whole experience. Understand your own reasons, your “why”, before you jump in; you’ll find yourself more satisfied in the long run.
“Dream big. Start small. But most of all, start.” - Simon Sinek