Monday, September 14, 2009

The Entrepreneurial Individual Part III (Final)

In connection with the previous post (The Entrepreneurial Individual Part II), the entrepreneur also needs to have some set of Skills besides the Attributes.



The entrepreneurial individual who succeeds does so because they know what is going on in the world. They are able to acquire information either personally or through others, analyze it and then use it to move towards.

The SPECTACLES analysis:

The SPECTACLES acronym stands for: Social, Political, Economic, Cultural, Technological, Aesthetic, Customer, Legal, Environmental, & Sectoral. It is these areas of the external environment that the entrepreneur needs to examine for their impact on his or her plans. From them will be generated a set of threats and opportunities that can be acted upon.

Analysis is a skill that requires discipline. Any business analysis needs to be carried out in a logical, planned way. Part of the analytical discipline is not rejecting information that does not seem to fit in with the entrepreneurial individual's plans—such information is often the most important as it may point to deviations and variations.

Successful business activities also require careful analysis of the internal aspects of the individual entrepreneur's organization including finance and his or her own personality—a crucial factor when considering individual entrepreneurship.


Individual entrepreneurs tend to know a great number of people. The ability to network is crucial to their business.

Networking skill includes communications, conversational, and vocabulary skills. The individual will want to build up a relationship as fast as possible and access information in the most efficient manner. They also need to put across their own charisma as expeditiously as possible.

The more the individual entrepreneur is aware of themselves, the more they can network with others and gain the synergy that can be developed from a combination of efforts.


Linked to networking is the importance of relationships. By studying motivation and other aspects of human psychology the entrepreneurial individual is in a better position to influence those who they will need to assist them in making their vision a reality.


The process we undertake to get somebody to do something (without using physical coercion) is known as negotiation. There are many texts on negotiation and all-important art of compromise. The better the networking and the stronger the relationships, the easier negotiations usually are. Compromise is nearly always required and a key negotiating skill that the entrepreneurial individual must develop is that of knowing precisely how much they can afford to give when compromising and assessing quickly and accurately the bottom line of the other partner in the negotiation.


Selling is, in essence, a form of negotiation with similar concepts. There are two things, however, that the entrepreneurial individual must sell long before there is a product or service to offer to customers.

The first of these is the vision and second is the entrepreneur themselves. It is a characteristic of individual entrepreneurship that the entrepreneur may be as important a factor in making a deal as the nuts and bolts of what is on offer. If you are, or aspire to be, an entrepreneurial individual then you need to be packaged, promoted, and sold in a manner that will gain you maximum coverage. There is absolutely nothing wrong with seeking publicity (provided the means and the actions are legal)—it is, after all, nothing more than personal advertising.


No business can survive without the resource we call money. Whilst the entrepreneurial individual does not need to be an accountant (there are plenty of accountants around whose services can be bought-in), they do need to understand the financial concepts that are used in business.

Sources of finance:

The entrepreneurial individual also needs to know where finance and assistance can be acquired. Banks and venture capitalists are useful sources. Governments often provide tax breaks and free advice to those starting or expanding business operations. This is where the networking skills can be put to excellent effect— find out who will put money in and what help the government or other organizations can provide.

The role of occupational skills:

It is not necessary for the entrepreneurial individual to possess any particular occupational skills. Some knowledge may be required for credibility but often those closely associated with an occupation may be too close to its traditions to see new possibilities. If an entrepreneurial individual has an idea, they can always buy-in the relevant professional expertise.


Discipline not only applies to work practices; it can be just as important in respect of food and drink. A healthy body aids a healthy mind, as the old saying goes!

It is important that the entrepreneurial individual has the support of their nearest and dearest. As the vision can consume much of an entrepreneur's time it is vital that space and time is made available for family relationships—they are just as important as, if not more important than, business ones.

Do not neglect those who care about you. If all goes well you will want to share the success with them. If it goes wrong, you will need them more than ever.

(Roger Cartwright)

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