Friday, January 8, 2010

Are You Really Cut Out To Be An Entrepreneur?

You hear lots of discussion everyday about the personal "failure rate" amongst those who "work for themselves". It's a pretty popular subject for forum discussions. There's plenty of sad stories passed around. Note: some stories are definitely legit, don't get me wrong here. But often there's "more to the story" as Paul Harvey would say.

Folks complain about their "lack" of results (notice I said "their" lack), blame everything but themselves (usually), constantly search for "the" way to turn things around (e.g. "the right system"), and/or routinely jump to the next "thing" because the last "thing" didn't work.

Now hold on their Cowboy (errrr....Cowgirl too).

"You" need to step back....breath deep....and take another look.

I believe there are some who are cut out to be their own boss and some who are not. We come across people everyday looking into starting their own business....using all kinds of models and business types. But unfortunately many don't really know if they have what it takes. Too often they're coming from the "give my boss 40 hrs/wk, collect a paycheck" mentality. Or worse yet..."sit on the couch eating Doritos 'cuz it should be so easy". That just doesn't work.

Before they/you get started into business for themselves/yourself there's a simple test called the “Self-Employment Test”.... specifically designed to measure your prospects for success. This is the perfect self examination to get people thinking about "working for themselves".

Self Employment Test

The test is from the book, “Is Self-Employment for You? by Paul Casey (you can get it at if interested). This book goes beyond the ABC’s of how to write a business plan but examines the potential entrepreneur’s emotional readiness and personality traits that ultimately make the difference between success and failure.

This test is very simple. Read the questions and assign yourself a number between 1 and 5, where 1 is the lowest score, and 5 is the highest. For example, in the first question, "Are you a leader?" A score of 1 means, "I have absolutely no leadership skills whatsoever. My dog doesn’t even follow me on walks." A score of 5 means, "I am an experienced leader in every sense of the word. If not for my dream of starting my own business, I would be running for president."

As Paul need to be completely honest with yourself on this test! Do not make yourself out to be more or less than you really are. Again, this test will help you to determine your prospects for success, but only if you are honest in assessing your own strengths and weaknesses.

Anyway don't despair if you don't score well it just means you may have a few things to work on. If you're willing to that is.