hen most people think of entrepreneurs, an image of a maverick innovator, a risk-taker, or a Silicon Valley disruptor springs to mind. Conversely, the collective vision of an 'employee' is often coloured with notions of safety, stability, and conformity.

But why the stark contrast? Aren't entrepreneurs and employees two sides of the same coin, both contributing to the economic machine that keeps the world moving?

This piece will explore the intrinsic differences that set entrepreneurs apart from traditional workers and why 'fitting in' was never on the cards for the former.

Reimaging Work Through the Lens of Entrepreneurship

Entrepreneurs look at the 'way things are' and see a canvas for innovation, untethered by the shackles of corporate hierarchy or tradition. For them, the workplace isn't just a space to execute tasks; it's a platform for realizing vision and creating impact.

When you grow up, you tend to get told that the world is the way it is. Life can be much broader once you discover one simple fact: Everything around you that you call life was made up of people who were no more intelligent than you.

And you can change it; you can influence it. Once you've learned that, you'll never be the same again.

These words reverberate loudly in the minds of those who've chosen to blaze their trails. Entrepreneurs aren't necessarily more intelligent or capable than their employee counterparts, but rather, they possess an unyielding spirit to carve out paths that others might shy away from.

The Unconventional Norm

Entrepreneurs tend to think differently from conventional logic. They have a knack for solving problems in non-traditional ways. They can identify critical issues and create innovative solutions without being bound by established norms.

This flexibility allows them to think outside the box and develop unique solutions that might not be possible otherwise. Entrepreneurs are risk-takers who venture into unconventional ideas, knowing that the most significant rewards are often beyond the safety nets of the plateau.

They thrive in an environment that values creativity and exploration, qualities that may need to be given priority in the corporate world.

Ready to take on challenges 

Entrepreneurs have freedom, flexibility, and the ability to take on challenges, learn from failures, and keep trying until they succeed. This is a stark divergence from the average employee who might shy away from risks that have the potential to disrupt the status quo.

For entrepreneurs, decisions are calculated not just to avert failure but to learn from it, recognizing that the surest way to avoid risk is not to prevent it but to understand it thoroughly.

The tendency to lead 

Entrepreneurship is the domain of leaders. It isn't merely about starting a business; it's about assuming stewardship over an idea, a product, a market, and, by extension, a team. This leadership manifests in various forms, from the inspirational to the operational.

The desire for control isn't borne out of a need for power but rather a compulsion to realize a vision unfettered.

Entrepreneurs don't harbour a disdain for authority; instead, they find fulfilment in being the architects of their fate, driving change, and basking in the accountability of steering an enterprise.

Freedom to Excel

The quest for freedom is one of the most oft-cited reasons for choosing the entrepreneurial path. It's not freedom in the sense of vacation days and working hours but freedom in a liberated mind.

Entrepreneurs revel in their ability to execute their roles without restrictive policies or hierarchical oversight constraints.

This autonomy isn't an aversion to collaboration or structure but a recognition that the creative process is nuanced and requires a degree of freedom to unfold organically.

It manifests the belief that the clock or the calendar does not govern productivity but passion and purpose.

Sowing the Seeds of a Work Ethic

It's a myth that entrepreneurs are 'their own bosses' with no one to answer to. In truth, they respond to the market, their customers, and the demands of an enterprise that, in its infancy, must be nurtured tirelessly.

This work ethic transcends the binary of employee and employer, representing a mindset of relentless dedication and unwavering commitment to a vision.

Pursuing this vision often involves long hours, stressful situations, and the need to wear multiple hats—from marketing guru to finance expert.

Entrepreneurs are not opposed to this; they thrive on it, recognizing that hard work and hardships are not obstacles but rather the crucible that refines ideas into realities.

Reconciling Two Worlds

Entrepreneurs and employees are not as different as we may think. Many entrepreneurs started as traditional employees and many employees have entrepreneurial aspirations. It's not about the individuals but their pursuits and philosophies guiding their actions. 

What's important to note is how these two roles can complement each other. They can learn from each other, and by combining their strengths, they can create a more robust and vibrant economic ecosystem.

Entrepreneurs are not motivated by the desire to be different; they are driven by the joy of creation and the desire to build something that reflects their passion and ideas.

These are the hallmarks that set them apart—attributes that, rather than preventing them from fitting in, enable them to stand out and contribute in ways that are uniquely their own.

As the global landscape continues to evolve, perhaps it's time to reassess and appreciate the entrepreneurial spirit not as an aberration but as the lifeblood that infuses vibrancy into our collective economic experience.

Apr 22, 2024
Skills For Future

More from 

Skills For Future


View All