Entrepreneurial personality, a matter of mindset?

entrepreneurial personality, a matter of mindset?

In this 4 minute blog, you learn more about assessing the personal entrepreneurial competencies (pecs) of owner-managers. You will learn which of the following best describes entrepreneurial personality traits. But, above all, you learn to develop your entrepreneurial personality and business growth further.

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Running a company isn’t easy. It’s hard work and demands a certain personality trait. Besides, I am not even talking about entrepreneurial success. Moreover, starting and running a business doesn’t mean someone is very enterprising too.

So, entrepreneurs differ in the degree of being entrepreneurial. For example, Mark Zuckerberg doesn’t have the same entrepreneurial mindset as Jeff Bezos. Also, Richard Branson doesn’t have the same risk attitude as Steve Jobs. Besides having an apt for innovation, there are, of course, individual differences.

We create entrepreneurial personality profiles through E-Scan for many entrepreneurial coaches, daily because it gives them and their coaching clients invaluable insights. Mainly to further improve the enterprising personality of their clients. Based on their personality type, we also calculate their Entrepreneurial Index.


The Entrepreneurial Index is a free indicator of how enterprising someone is. The index ranges from 0 to 100 and indicates how someone scores on entrepreneurship’s most important personality characteristics.

If people have a score of 30 or lower, for sure, they show many weak personal entrepreneurial competencies. However, if they have an impressive score of 90, they are more likely to score high on innovativeness, market awareness, and a trait like risk tolerance.

Our mission is to develop entrepreneurship worldwide. To further develop the entrepreneurial potential of business coaching clients, we first have to assess how enterprising a business owner is? In other words, what is their Entrepreneurial Index? If you would like to know what your Entrepreneurial Index is? You can test it here.

What is an entrepreneurial personality?

That brings us to the question that is often debated: what is entrepreneurial? Well, there are many views on the entrepreneur definition or what an entrepreneurial personality is and does.

The definition of an entrepreneurial attitude consists of three parts.

Seeing opportunities

The first part is seeing opportunities. Everyone sees opportunities. For example, you walk past an empty building, and you fantasize about what you could start there. However, you can also observe an opportunity within an entrepreneurial venture or public organization. For example, a CEO or receptionist envisions another approach that saves the company a lot of money. However, if you don’t take action, it’s nothing more than dreaming and fantasizing.

Seizing opportunities

The second part follows the first part, which is really starting to do something with the opportunity. Or at least investigate whether it makes sense to implement the perceived probability. Is it financially feasible? Are you the right person to take that opportunity? Do you have the entrepreneurial personality and personal qualities to realize the opportunity?

Creating value

The third and last part is the creation of value. Even if you exploit the opportunity, meaning the approach that you have devised for the organization where you work actually saves money, the question remains if it is sufficient. Can you make enough money with the business you started in the vacant building? And value is of course, much more than just money.

Value can also mean freedom, to be able to do what you really like and what makes your customers happy. Or social entrepreneurship, where you help solve societies’ problems with a new business. You generate not only value for yourself (income, freedom, proactivity) but also value for others (making customers happy and working towards a better world).

So, our definition of an entrepreneurial personality is:

An entrepreneurial personality sees opportunities and exploits them by creating value for themselves and others, sustainably.

Dr. Martijn Driessen

Still, this definition doesn’t say much about the typical characteristics of a practicing entrepreneur. Besides, be alerted as there is a difference between skills, abilities, knowledge, and competencies. So, if we would like to typify a true venture creator’s personality, what entrepreneurial trait, skill, or talent come up?

The ‘100% entrepreneur’

E-Scan was used in a television program called ‘100% entrepreneur’. The participants in this program needed to demonstrate entrepreneurial behavior. In total, a little over 8,000 business owners applied for participating in this television program. Based on the E-Scan, which was part of the online program of this tv show, the typical entrepreneurial personality emerged.

So, what is the common entrepreneurial personality type? What is the true skill set of an entrepreneurial CEO? What’s the answer to the question many people ask: “What are the personal entrepreneurial competencies?”

Based on the participants’ business personality profiles, derived from the E-Scan, reveal important entrepreneur personality traits.

Which of the following best describes entrepreneurial personality traits?

The personality aspects of a true entrepreneur are someone who:

  • uses his manipulating power.
  • gives his opinion without being asked.
  • creates a vision and a novel idea for a competitive advantage.
  • is (too) critical.
  • works focused and shows conscientiousness.
  • likes to organize and manage things; call it execution power (entrepreneur vs manager).
  • keeps an open mind.
  • has a different perception and sees problems as an opportunity.
  • takes criticism personally.
  • does well around others.
  • wants to be the leader of a team.
  • knows how to make others enthusiastic.
  • is at his best when things run smoothly and orderly.
  • is a pain in the ass when things don’t run (at all).
  • constantly thinks about the goals and entrepreneurial strategies.

In short, a dreamer who acts. The enterprising venture owner puts his vision into practice. This blog by Barry Dunlop describes a colorful image of the mindset of a successful entrepreneur.

Curious about your entrepreneurial profile? Do the E-Scan and Test it now.

Read this wonderful example where entrepreneurial behavior comes vividly to life: the inspirational story of Mr. Selfridge.

What if you are not entrepreneurial?

Do all entrepreneurs score like this? No, of course not. Does anyone with an entrepreneurial intention or entrepreneurial orientation also have a strong entrepreneurial activity? No, even that will not apply.

Do all founders and owners need to score precisely like the above personality? Again, no.

Did anyone score 100? No, at most, one or two owners.

Maybe a surprising conclusion, but the average score was 58.

So, the more critical issue is that they have to be enterprising enough for the company they run. The competencies or the traits of an entrepreneur they miss out, need to be complemented one way or the other.

Thus, the better entrepreneurs know themselves, the bigger the chances of success. That is to say, at least as long as you can help them to learn how to cooperate with others. Can they work with different personality profiles to complement their weaker competencies?

Entrepreneur Coaching programs, which used an Entrepreneurial Mindset Tool for measurement, have been shown to increase individual entrepreneurship traits and characteristics. And, research shows with coaching, the owner’s core competencies can be developed. And the biggest surprise is that male and female entrepreneurs differ but not where you would expect. Read about the comparison between male and female entrepreneurs.

Entrepreneurship programs

Infusionsoft and Emergent Research conducted a study called: “Defining and Achieving Small Business Success.” To become successful, venture owners need to overcome challenges. However, more challenges than a few decades ago. Even more so, because more and younger people are starting their own businesses. Even with the presence of an entrepreneurial ecosystem, entrepreneurship development is needed. That’s why they increasingly make use of paid coaches. Read in this blog: benefits of business coaching what entrepreneurs say about their coach.

One of the main challenges owners of small businesses need to improve is their management, systematic planning, and leadership skills.

In other words, to help them set goals and achieve success and work through difficult business problems and decisions, they need a coach to improve their entrepreneurial learning.

Everyone needs a coach.

– Eric Schmidt, Executive Chairman, Google

How to assess entrepreneurial skills?

There are many psychometric tests. A well-known one is the Big Five measuring: neuroticism (or emotional stability), extroversion, openness, agreeableness, and conscientiousness. However, E-Scan is based on entrepreneurship research and the psychology of an entrepreneur and proved to be a reliable self-assessment tool in assessing your entrepreneurial competencies. However, it is designed to help you grow your entrepreneurial clients further. Hence, it is a different type of assessment, like no other. Moreover, it works well with entrepreneurship education too. E-Scan gives you – in an instant – a detailed and accurate insight into the personal entrepreneurial competency of your client.

In entrepreneur coaching, it helps to have that discussion about your clients themselves. As a result, your clients start reflecting on their behavior concerning the important competencies of a firm owner. Otherwise, this tends to be discussed superficially. In other words, it will increase their self-awareness.

Did you know that only 28% of entrepreneurs have accurate self-knowledge? The chances are that they make the wrong decisions based on their wrong self-image. Without coaching, that could do a lot of harm.

Request Your Free E-Scan

Would you like to see how E-Scan can help you turn customers into ambassadors and assess your personal entrepreneurial characteristics? Get your free E-Scan now.