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Category: ENTREPRENEURSHIP, The Entrepreneur


AN ENTREPRENEUR MIND-SET (an excerpt from the Curiosity book)
Written by Alvin Phiri
22 September 2016

ALWAYS ASK WHY?

Curiosity is a result of a question asked within, either rhetorical or circumstantial, an inquisitive mind is a curious mind and with every answer sought your curiosity grows. Your curiosity journey is prompted by WHY, the aptitude to confront the status quo, the confidence to be different, the eagerness to know and the passion to conquer. These are the virtues of an entrepreneur derived from their characteristics to create opportunities through asking why. An entrepreneur refuses to accept that this is it, there has to be another way and they pursue to find it. You can never be curious and not ask why; otherwise your curiosity does not have a basis or a point of reference.

Great entrepreneurs are non-exhaustive. They have a bigger picture in mind and look at a situation with perspective. They set their minds in the bigger scheme of things allowing them to always be two steps ahead and vigilant to opportunities. You can look at an entrepreneur as a nosy rat, when a rat raids a space it leaves no stone unturned and it does so swiftly.

Failure to be curious as an entrepreneur may expose you to the risk of missing out on an important factor that will make or break the business in question. This might appear as being paranoid but a healthy level of suspicion or scepticism is important for an entrepreneur.

An inquisitive attitude makes entrepreneurs very diligent and they exercise due care for every transaction or deal. This allows them to be critical and conclusive with better understanding from an informed point of view. This follows with real life situations, when one faces a problem you are better able to solve the problem if you investigate the source of the problem. Asking why makes an entrepreneur a very good negotiator and allows them to get the best deal to capture the best value for their money. Don’t always accept things on face value, you might miss out important elements of the crux of the matter. Let’s look at the virtues of an entrepreneur in depth:

The aptitude to challenge the status quo

The high level of entrepreneurship is not to find or identify opportunities but to create opportunities. To be able to create opportunities requires you to always investigate the world around you and not to accept things for what they are. This is not a common virtue as it requires one to have the guts to challenge the system or an accepted way of life. These kinds of people are often misunderstood and potentially can be dismissed as they are seemingly abnormal in the eyes of other people. The history of the invention of a computer is one interesting example; in 1977, Ken Olson the founder of Digital Equipment Corp (DEC) was quoted as saying, “There is no reason anyone would want a computer in their home.” Years earlier in 1943, Thomas Watson, chairman of IBM, stated “I think there is a world market for maybe five computers”. This was because computers back then where enormous in size weighing approximately 30 tons. Back then it would have been a laughing joke to even imagine that one day we would have laptops let alone smart phones that fit in one’s pocket. It took a lot of guts to challenge this status quo.

Challenging the status quo does not always make sense to everybody but it makes perfect sense to you, you are seemingly the only audience to your excursion. Often we get excited when an idea gets the attention of many, however you need to have the aptitude to still be excited and having energy and passion to pursue an idea that is unpopular. There are many great ideas that have changed the world but also there are few ideas that were not given an opportunity because of their unpopularity. Maybe you are sitting with one today, have the aptitude to challenge the status quo and pursue your dream, the only convincing you need is your own.


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