3 Characteristics Successful Entrepreneurs Never Have On the path to success, sometimes the things you don't do are as important as those you should.

By Adam Toren

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.


There are millions of resources out there to improve every aspect of your performance, from books to videos to seminars and everything in between. Entire industries have been founded and thrived on self-improvement, and while that's an important aspect of success, so are the things you should not be doing.

Ultimately, you achieve your greatest vision through a balanced approach of what actions you can take to improve, and what habits you need to abandon that are holding you back.

Related: 5 Traits All Great Entrepreneurs Have

Here are three things that mega-successful entrepreneurs never do that can help guide you to the top, too.

1. They are never fake.

The best entrepreneurs somehow have an inner drive that compels them to be authentic, for better or worse. There are a myriad of stories about the unique combination of genius and madman intertwined into the minds and personalities of the biggest entrepreneurial figures such as Steve Jobs.

Truly successful entrepreneurs simply can't stand to be fake. While many will praise the unique qualities of successful entrepreneurs after they've achieved greatness, the truth is that many of these figures faced countless setbacks as a result of their uncompromising commitment to their vision.

It's not always easy to be unique. There is constant social pressure on all of us to conform in various ways to not stand out from the crowd. Real entrepreneurs know that while they don't have to be confrontational, they simple can't conform for the sake of fitting in.

If you're willing to deal with the potential social consequences of being your true self, you'll find that over time you can go far. Real entrepreneurs simply can't fake it.

2. They are never victims.

Being unique means you're going to do great things, and as mentioned, in the process you're also going to rub a lot of ordinary people the wrong way. You have to be willing to step into your greatness and accept the consequences of what that means.

Related: 10 Behaviors of Genuine People

You might encounter obstacles and setbacks and have to make sacrifices because you can't conform. Being authentic takes vigilance, but never involves being a victim.

Great entrepreneurs will never act like victims. They accept the responsibility for their successes and failures. They embrace their mistakes and setbacks. They acknowledge and improve upon disaster.

Be courageous and never settle into being a victim.

3. They are never lazy.

Tim Ferriss has made an empire out of the idea of a four-hour work week, but most successful entrepreneurs will tell you they work a lot more than four hours a week.

Entrepreneurs are hustlers. They operate with a constant sense of immediacy that keeps them pushing forward at all times. The real difference between workers and entrepreneurs is that when you do work you love, you actually love being a part of the hustle.

Exercise your hustle habits and you'll never be lazy.

Related: 7 Traits That Will Help You Overcome Adversity

Adam Toren

Serial entrepreneur, mentor, advisor and co-founder of YoungEntrepreneur.com

Adam Toren is a serial entrepreneur, mentor, investor and co-founder of YoungEntrepreneur.com. He is co-author, with his brother Matthew, of Kidpreneurs and Small Business, BIG Vision: Lessons on How to Dominate Your Market from Self-Made Entrepreneurs Who Did it Right (Wiley). He's based in Phoenix, Ariz.

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