Wednesday, October 15, 2008


Often times the term entrepreneur has a business-like connotation. However, entrepreneurship can be applied to many different areas. It is not all about business and profits. Dan O’Neill, a member of the ASU Office of Research and Economic Affairs, defines entrepreneurship as, “creating new ventures that generate and capture value by realizing opportunities through creativity, innovation, knowledge, skill and passion while managing resources and risks.” Entrepreneurs also need to take into account the same three things as sustainability: the environment, the economy, and society. Being a successful entrepreneur is not an easy task.

Creativity, innovation, knowledge, skill, and passion can be applied to almost any area of interest. Most people associate the term entrepreneur with such businessmen as Bill Gates or Microsoft or Steve Jobs of Apple. However, entrepreneurship extends much further than the business world. Different innovative artists are entrepreneurs, politicians, athletes, celebrities, and so forth. Nevertheless, being an entrepreneur does not equal wealth. Even the person running and initiated the local neighborhood charity drive is an entrepreneur. No matter what interests a person may have, they can become an entrepreneur in that area. Advocating for a local charity or homeless shelter can become an entrepreneurial venture. Find a focus and go for it.

O’Neill further lists the important main characteristics of entrepreneurs as, “perseverance, self-confidence, passionate, risk-takers, tolerable of ambiguity, open to new experiences, competitive, hard working, high in energy, disciplined, realistic and optimistic.” These qualities may not be easy or necessarily quick to develop, but they are well worth the time and effort. These qualities make for success in almost any situation.

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