What Does It Really Take To Be a Successful Entrepreneur
Written by Lisa Montanaro | March 16, 2012

If you listen to the stories of the most successful entrepreneurs, you’ll often find that they experienced a turning point after which their business took off. Sherri Garrity of Corporate Fugitive held a teleseries earlier this year called “The Best Business Advice Ever” during which she interviewed 15 successful women entrepreneurs. Each entrepreneur shared her success story, including lessons learned along the way. Afterward, Sherry identified 4 categories of success that each entrepreneur exhibited. Below are some highlights from the interviews and words of wisdom to inspire you as you continue your entrepreneurial journey.

  1. Clarity“A business that makes nothing but money is a poor business.” ~ Henry Ford

    The most successful entrepreneurs are often passionate about running their business. Success comes from being crystal clear about the vision you have for your business and your life. It can come in the form of one defining moment, or in a series of increments. Clarity means getting very specific about your target market and the value you bring to that market. Clarity is that intangible “thing” that propels you forward when you’re otherwise tempted to quit. (Hint . . . it’s not always money, but rather, is made up of the intangibles that equal success to you). So, ask yourself, what’s the vision for your business and how are you going to get there? Start answering that question and you will have clarity.

  2. Help“You have to do it by yourself, and you can’t do it alone.” ~ Martin Rutte

    Success comes from accepting help and building support systems. I have yet to speak to a successful entrepreneur who says it’s possible to build a successful business entirely alone. It means being willing to accept help in the form of mentors, coaches, and professional advisors, and hiring the help you need to support yourself and your business operations.

  3. Acceptance Mixed with Action“Business, more than any other occupation, is a continual dealing with the future; it is a continual calculation, an instinctive exercise in foresight.”
    ~ Henry R. Luce

    Success comes from taking consistent action, and being able to adapt and implement advice from the right people at the right time. This is easier said than done, as there is a plethora of information coming at entrepreneurs from many different sides. You must be able to decipher what makes sense for your business in order to determine which ideas to implement. Therefore, success requires sorting through the information and advice to grab those business ideas that are truly authentic to you and will move you forward to build the business that matches your vision.

  4. Commitment “Success seems to be connected with action. Successful people keep moving. They make mistakes, but they don’t quit.” ~ Conrad Hamilton

    Success comes from ultimate commitment and a refusal to accept anything less than the vision you have. Being committed doesn’t necessarily mean pushing harder and harder until you burn out. It means keeping an open mind, being willing to shift and adjust your approach as needed, and accepting that the business you started will not be the business you end up with. It means finding the healthy balance between being committed to success and being addicted to an outdated or unauthentic notion of it.

Copyright © 2010 Lisa Montanaro of LM Organizing Solutions, LLC.

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Copyright 2009. Lisa Montanaro is a Productivity Consultant, Success Coach, Business Strategist, Speaker and Author who helps people live successful and passionate lives, and operate productive and profitable businesses. Lisa publishes the monthly “DECIDE® to be Organized” e-zine for success-minded individuals, and “Next Level Business Success” e-zine for entrepreneurs. Subscribe today at www.LMOrganizingSolutions.com. Lisa is the author of The Ultimate Life Organizer: An Interactive Guide to a Simpler, Less Stressful & More Organized Life, published by Peter Pauper Press. Lisa also publishes the DECIDE® to be Organized blog at www.DecideToBeOrganized.com. Through her work, Lisa helps people deal with the issues that block personal and professional change and growth. To explore how Lisa can help take your business to the next level, contact Lisa at (845) 988-0183 or by e-mail at Lisa@LMOrganizingSolutions.com.

Meet the Author

Helping others be the best versions of themselves gets me jazzed!

I’ve worn many hats in my lifetime—often at the same time—while enjoying fulfilling careers. I’ve been a performer, teacher, sign language instructor, lawyer, career counselor, law professor, coach, consultant, mediator, entrepreneur, speaker, trainer, writer, and author. 

I’m an eternal optimist and life-long learner, constantly researching ways to improve personal and professional effectiveness. And it brings me great joy to then pass on the results of that persistent curiosity to my clients and audiences. 

Of all the career hats I’ve been privileged to wear, my favorite is owner of this business since 2002. Why? Because it provides me the opportunity to work with wonderful organizational and individual clients. On any given day, I get to connect deeply with audiences, work with dedicated teams, improve workplaces, watch clients have a-ha moments, and know I’ve made a difference in their lives and careers. And that is very satisfying.