Business doesn’t have to be about being the biggest, fastest or strongest.
Entrepreneurs don’t have to be short-sighted, aggressive and unfair.
“Entrepreneurialism has nothing to do with hardwired personality traits.”
This is what Robert Kelsey says in this article in the journal of the Royal Society of Arts.
I agree totally.
Unfortunately, the popular image of the ‘successful entrepreneur’ is someone who is arrogant, ruthless and entirely motivated by money.
Robert Kelsey argues that this skewed image of what a successful entrepreneur needs to be is deterring many talented people from setting up their own business. In the same article, Rajeeb Dey says that “The media overplays the image of the nasty entrepreneur. It’s easy to forget that business is primarily relationship-driven.”
In my view, TV series such as The Apprentice and Dragon’s Den, entertaining though they are, portray business in such a way that they probably do more to deter rather than encourage people to become entrepreneurs.
Many creative people don’t fit the ‘maverick entrepreneur’ stereotype – yet they can be highly successful in business. They choose to do business in their own way, being clear about their objectives and sticking to their values.
There are many different ways of growing a creative or digital business and all kinds of people can succeed by doing things unconventionally. My book, blog and the Creative Enterprise Network illustrate how people have combined their creativity and with imaginative business thinking to achieve success on their own terms. Indeed T-Shirts and Suits® is all about empowering creative people with the best business techniques so they can grow their creative enterprise in the way that’s best for them.
Successful creative entrepreneurs focus on their own Business Formula, which brings together creative passion, personal and business goals, business feasibility, competitive advantage, financial realities and strategic marketing.
So, be creative in your work – and also be creative about the way you do business and develop as a successful entrepreneur.
You don’t have to be like the stereotypical businesspeople portrayed in the media.
Be true to yourself, your goals and your values.
Be your own kind of entrepreneur!
The article ‘Create your own Business Formula’ and the eBook ‘T-Shirts and Suits: A Guide to the Business of Creativity’ are both available free online and can be copied, printed and re-distributed (provided you don’t change them or sell them).
David Parrish, Robert Kelsey and Rajeeb Dey are Fellows of the RSA (Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures & Commerce).
Discuss this article and share your own experiences of being a creative entrepreneur on the T-Shirts and Suits Creative Enterprise Network.