How you can benefit from an entrepreneurial mindset

February 16, 2021 · 2 min read · By ASU CareerCatalyst

It’s easy to admire the characteristics and success of entrepreneurs. And the good news is that what makes them great can make you great too. Use National Self-Improvement Month to your advantage, and learn how to think like an entrepreneur with Scott Livengood, assistant professor in Arizona State University’s W.P Carey School of Business.

When we imagine an entrepreneur, we often think of a visionary with savvy business smarts destined to be a big success.

On the contrary, what sets successful entrepreneurs apart isn’t just their business plan. Oftentimes, it’s the characteristics of the entrepreneur themselves.

Research shows that successful entrepreneurs have a unique way of approaching problems. This is the entrepreneurial mindset.

This mindset shapes how successful entrepreneurs act and view the world around them. It’s also essential to their creativity and success.

The entrepreneurial mindset

The entrepreneurial mindset includes a variety of admirable traits including the ability to take initiative, adapt to change, find creative solutions and be comfortable with risk.

People who have adopted this mindset see challenges as opportunities. They view failure as a chance to learn and let vision, not perfectionism, drive their actions.

“With this mindset, learners are able to recognize potentially profitable opportunities, generate creative solutions to important problems, assess and minimize risk, gather critical resources, and present solutions to interested stakeholders,” said Scott Livengood, instructor of ASU Continuing and Professional Education entrepreneurship courses and assistant professor in the W.P. Carey School of Business.

This way of thinking helps successful entrepreneurs make smart decisions and innovate in the face of challenges.

“These learners are also able to analyze the challenges and opportunities with creating new ventures and can act to increase the likelihood of success in their own entrepreneurial endeavors,” Livengood said.

The benefits

The benefits of this mindset extend well beyond entrepreneurship. The ability to learn from failure, think creatively and identify opportunities can foster success in all parts of your life, even if you never plan to start your own business.

“To me, the entrepreneurial process and entrepreneurial mindset do not just need to be confined to business situations in general, and new ventures specifically,” Livengood said.

This entrepreneurial way of thinking can help you start a side hustle, lead innovative ventures at your current job and be a better problem solver in your personal life.

Just as important, the entrepreneurial mindset can make you more adaptable to the rapid changes in today’s job market.

“Those who are able to identify problems or opportunities and then work to generate creative solutions to those issues can also improve situations in their personal lives,” Livengood said. “This can benefit the lives of those around them as well.”

Changing your mindset

To develop an entrepreneurial mindset, you’ll probably need to change some of your current thought processes. Start by identifying which parts of your current mindset need to improve. Then come up with a plan to make those changes.

This may involve changing your habits or developing the self-awareness to catch yourself when you fall back into your old mindset.

For example, if you want to be more innovative, make time each day for creative exercises and reading. Or if you want to be more resilient, reframe your mindset to view each mistake as a chance to learn.

Another key part of the entrepreneurial mindset is to never stop learning. So, try taking entrepreneurship classes to further boost your entrepreneurial thinking.

“For our entrepreneurship courses, we are focused on providing learners with a fundamental understanding of the entrepreneurial process and on cultivating the entrepreneurial mindset,” Livengood said.

By creating a vision and acting upon it, you’re already one step closer to thinking like an entrepreneur.

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