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Can You be an Entrepreneur? With These #5 Traits, Maybe Yes For people who want money, entrepreneurship would actually be a bad idea.

By Aashika Jain

You're reading Entrepreneur India, an international franchise of Entrepreneur Media.


There are two components of being an entrepreneur. First is why you want to be an entrepreneur. Second is how to be an entrepreneur.

Here are top #5 traits that could transform one into an entrepreneur.

Be Bold

The CEO and founder of cloud telephony startup Knowlarity grew up in India's small city Kanpur in a business family ironically hated business. He studied computer sciences and wondered if consumers have a telephone, they would need a way to manage phone calls. This led to the inception of his Indian startup, which he started after leaving a high profile job at McKinsey and Microsoft in the US.

"I was quite bold as a professional. I thought my working as a professional led me to not use my potential to the maximum," says Ambarish Gupta of cloud telephony platform Knowlarity.

Nirupama Menon Rao, India's Foreign Secretary from 2009 to 2011, says confidence is the key to success. Rao attributes her success to belief in oneself. She says women can reach anywhere if they believe in who they are and what they want to achieve.

In July 2009, she became the second woman to hold the post of India's Foreign Secretary, the head of the Indian Foreign Service.

Intense Passion

Intense drive to make an impact is particularly significant. There were days when people wanted to be doctors, engineers, today people want to be entrepreneurs because their friends are entrepreneurs.

India's richest entrepreneur Mukesh Ambani believes entrepreneurs should be open and not worry about what world thinks. "We should remain open to global trade and not be influenced by changes in a world where walls are being built," Ambani said earlier this month.

Sonam Wangchuk whose solution to freeze glacial meltwater into towering conical mounds resembling Tibetan religious stupas won him the International Rolex Award of Enterprise 2016.

Wangchuk's idea of building ice stupas came from his drive to combat the problem of water scarcity. He believes if you have the burning desire to solve a problem, you can be an entrepreneur.

Drive to Solve Problems

One thing India has in plenty is problems. So, India is the land of problems and hence the land of opportunities. I have respect for entrepreneurs who show courage says Gupta.

Wangchuk's project to make Ice Stupas is faced by many challenges. The believer in him says tomorrow, when there is more focus and more money in his field of work, there will be people who will specialize in better things to solve the problem of water scarcity in Ladakh.

Divyanshu Ganatra who lost his eye sight at 19 and a well-established entrepreneur with two successful ventures challenges are a part and parcel of an entrepreneur's life.

"I don't deny there are challenges. But we all have our own challenges. Some have to work twice as hard, some four times." If one has the drive to solve problems, the game is won.

Clear Focus

People should know the real reason behind becoming entrepreneurs. Is it money, is it power, independence, peer recognition, belonging, building something new says Gupta.

Once that is clear then they can choose the kind of entrepreneurship they want to do and that will increase the chances of success.

"I feel you should not be an entrepreneur just because it is fashion. Just because this person is doing this, this person is doing that. You need to have the burning fire to solve some problem, something that keeps you awake at night. And then you are ready to take risks and not just risks, calculated risks," says Wangchuk.

Ambani believes entrepreneurs should to focus on issues that do good to people in some way and not get disheartened by failures.


Sometimes you know you have to do what you have to do and I always did what I wanted to do believes Prema Sagar, one of Asia's most influential public relations personalities.

Sagar launched a public relations company in India in 1992 at a time when none in the country knew about the industry and no one dared to enter this unexplored territory.

She is now the Vice Chair of Burson-Marsteller and runs a foundation to provide medical help to underprivileged children.

Sometimes arrogance works says Gupta too.

"I was a pretty good student and after graduation I got to work with one of the world's biggest company. It was difficult company to get into and with my very strong professional experience, I knew I can always make a comeback and take up a regular job. There was a cushion. But if I don't try," I will regret says Gupta.

Aashika Jain

Entrepreneur Staff

Former Associate Editor, Entrepreneur India

Journalist in the making since 2006! My fastest fingers have worked for India's business news channel CNBC-TV18, global news wire Thomson Reuters, the digital arm of India’s biggest newspaper The Economic Times and Entrepreneur India as the Digital Head. 
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