Success in any business is never a walk in the park. It not only takes hard work, but also persistence alongside other several important factors.

However, it can sometimes be hard to explain why some people succeed as a website builder, for example, while others fail despite using similar strategies or wildly different ones. After all, the road to business success isn’t easy. There are many barriers that can stop you at any point.

Take, for instance, Mark Zuckerberg, the founder and CEO of Facebook, and Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin. Page and Brin were Ph.D. students at Stanford University when they founded Google. In fact, Google was their research project.

On the other hand, Zuckerberg dropped out of Harvard to continue with his Facebook ventures. He was simply coding Facebook for fun. Clearly, these are two opposite traits and dimensions. The mystery is that, today, Facebook and Google are two tech giants in the world.

The literature in the startup world is full of examples like these. You only have to look at the business section of your bookstore and you will see.

10 Traits of a Successful Entrepreneur

You might spot some really good books meant to inspire people to start up their own business, too, like The 4-Hour Workweek by Timothy Ferriss, The Fire Starter Sessions by Danielle LaPorte, The $100 Startup by Chris Guillebeau, and Finding Your Way in a Wild New World by Martha Beck, just to mention a few.

The question is, how many people have read such books? Has everyone managed to start a small business? Well, there is more to being a successful entrepreneur than reading success stories.

As a matter of fact, if you analyze lives of all successful entrepreneurs, they tend to have a comparable pattern and share some basic traits. Leave alone the superficial things you can see and you may be able to see what makes them stand out. Some of these traits include passion, perseverance, and a positive attitude.

They try to cultivate all these attributes over time, eventually starting and running successful businesses. The following are ten important traits that you would need in order to make your business a success.

1. Passion

You need passion to be a successful entrepreneur.

It doesn’t matter the number of times you fail when starting up a small business. The love for what you are doing will keep your business strategy going.

You need to persevere and aim to find a solution to any problem that seems to be a barrier to your success.

Mark Zuckerberg was passionate about computer programming as early as in middle school. He could create some games his fellow kids were playing. His pilot project Facemash was shut down by the college only a few days after it went online.

This only acted as a source of inspiration. This is what it means by loving what you do.

2. Patience

From Facemash, Zuckerberg then created Thefacebook and then Facebook. Be patient; learn to take baby steps. Success comes only after some time. It may take months or even years. Who knew that Apple products could become some of the most treasured gadgets before the year 2000?

Taking one step at a time will help you develop a good risk management strategy. This is a crucial element for any startup. It helps you absorb the losses as you learn. This is only possible if you take smaller risks.

3. Humility to learn from others

Humility to learn from others

It takes a humble person to strive to learn from other people. These may include friends who are in the same business, or mentors or influencers who are a success in their own fields of business.

You will find that most successful entrepreneurs will work for others before opting to go alone.

You need to spend few years in the industry under a good mentor. This will provide a good launching pad. Learn from their mistakes and aim to improve on them.

4. Confidence

This will unlock all barriers that may hinder you from achieving your entrepreneurial goals. Through confidence, you will learn how to self-promote your small business or hire a website builder to help you. You need to understand that it is your responsibility as the founder to market the brand.

With confidence, you will learn how to share your vision with other people. During your early stages in the industry you can learn a lot from your critics. Basically, they will help you to come up with a better product or service.

You don’t have time to procrastinate. Analyze every detail of your progress and move on it. Remember, you have competitors who are already established. Therefore, any time you waste will only cost the prosperity of your ventures.

5. The foresight to plan

The foresight to plan

This is not the time to do things randomly. You must have a plan on how you intend to start and run your business. Take for instance, the Shark Tank personalities. One vivid aspect is that most entrepreneurs at least have a plan on how they intend to run their businesses.

You don’t need a complete plan. After all, your business will be expanding and you will improve on it as time goes by. Who knew Facebook could buy WhatsApp? Or BlackBerry could invest in an Android smartphone? All these are now incorporated into their plans.

The plan should go hand in hand with your budget. Plan for what you can achieve within the limited resources at your disposal. It will be the very first step that will lure investors to your business.

6. The perseverance to build reputation

There will be times when you need to go an extra mile to prove your expertise and trust. They say that the quality will remain long after the price is forgotten. This is true, especially for any entrepreneur who wants to succeed. You must not compromise quality at any given time. It is one aspect you should remember the very first day you create a new product.

Let’s take a website or a blog, for example. A site which is regularly updated with valuable information is likely to increase its web traffic. It provides information that internet users need, and the more it provides solutions for free, the more its reputation as a reputable website will be built.

7. Determination


There is no time limit for starting your own small business. You can start as early or as late as you like, depending on your determination.

In fact, there are people who begin investing after their retirement age. You can start today, as long as you have put all priorities right.

Sam Walton, founder of Wal-Mart, for example, opened that retail giant when he was already in his 40s.

Remember, there is experience that comes with age. Normally, it will tend to give you a new perspective of your new venture. This may include life experiences.

8. Good work ethics

You need to set a culture and a set of skills that will support your brand. If you’re not good as a website builder, for example, find someone else who is. This is the reason why we have co-founders or team leaders.

As a team, you can easily foster innovation and good work ethics that will lead to the prosperity of your business.

9-10. The right attitude and mindset

The right attitude and mindset

The two will set a tone for your business. Starting up a business that only focuses on making money at the expense of growth may not go far.

Strive to expand the business, increase customer base, and offer quality services. You must have a positive energy at all time.

The bottom line is that to become a successful entrepreneur, you should be able to blend all the ten vital aspects discussed above. Don’t wait for someone else to motivate you. The motivation and positive energy should come from you.

More importantly, you can only do all these when you are in good health — eat a balanced diet, exercise regularly, and improve on your social life.

What do you think has been the main reason for the success of your new business? What were the main challenges you faced? Please share in the comments!