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Pivot: How Top Entrepreneurs Adapt and Change Course to Find Ultimate Success by Joanne Hyland, Remy Arteaga

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Chapter 4

So, You Want to Be an Entrepreneur?

In the previous chapter, we highlighted some key traits of the corporate entrepreneur (CE), including superior technical capabilities, inquisitiveness, curiosity, assertiveness, risk taking, and passion. One can apply these same characteristics when attempting to describe an individual entrepreneur. Although the CE and entrepreneur share some qualities, there are differences. For example, why does an individual entrepreneur choose a path to lower median lifetime earnings than what could be earned by working for larger corporations?1 When a person makes a choice to be an entrepreneur, the individual does so generally against the advice of friends, colleagues, and family. Why doesn't the entrepreneur take a job at a big organization and earn more money? Why do entrepreneurs choose to spend their savings, mortgage their homes, and borrow from family just to launch a startup that is likely to fail? Some would call this type of behavior irrational and a bit insane. Many have called this type of repeated behavior over the years a phenomenon.

There are many definitions of an entrepreneur in cyberspace. For example, Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary defines entrepreneur as “one who organizes, manages, and assumes the risks of a business or enterprise.” I find this definition to be rather sterile and lacking insight. John Burgstone and Bill Murphy Jr. in their book, Breakthrough Entrepreneurship, discussed the concept that an entrepreneur ...

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