Academy for Chief Executives Blog Rotating Header Image

Are you a budding Entrepreneur? By Brian Chernett

Brian Chernett

Brian Chernett

The need for growth to come from private businesses in the UK has never been greater now that we are emerging from a global recession.  In developing countries too, growth will come from private business, preferably from businesses set up in their country of origin.  Businesses such as these are created by entrepreneurs, people who are prepared to take a risk in setting up and growing a business in return for some type of reward later. Not all rewards are monetary, though the need for a business to be profitable is universal.

Over the next few days we’ll be adding blogs about entrepreneurs from a variety of authors. In this blog, I’ll take a look at who can become an entrepreneur and what it takes to do that.

If you Google the word entrepreneur, you’ll get ‘about 34,600,000 results’, so it is clearly a subject that interests people and on which much has been written. defines entrepreneur as “a person who organizes and manages a business undertaking, assuming the risk for the sake of the profit.” They add, “However, there is much more to entrepreneurship than this simple definition. Author and successful entrepreneur Michael Gerber once wrote, “The entrepreneur is our visionary, the creator in each of us. We’re born with that quality and it defines our lives as we respond to what we see, hear, feel, and experience. It is developed, nurtured, and given space to flourish or is squelched, thwarted, without air or stimulation, and dies.”

Being an entrepreneur is not an exclusive occupation that requires qualifications to join. Anyone can be an entrepreneur. To be one you need an idea for a business. It can be

  • A completely new idea or an invention that solves a problem
  • An adaptation of an idea from somewhere or someone else (that doesn’t infringe intellectual property)
  • An existing idea applied to a new market
  • Or doing something commonplace (like running a shop) better

What is without question is that an idea is not enough. Along with the idea, the entrepreneur will need qualities that come from within (hence my book title) and resources from external sources. Qualities include passion, determination, courage, drive, emotional intelligence, sense of timing and speed of action. Resources would include research, finance, access to learning and support. They will also need a demand for their product or service that will be sufficient to make it work profitably

Who becomes a successful entrepreneur? TV producers show us their representation of entrepreneurs through programmes like ‘The Apprentice’ and ‘Dragon’s Den’ but is the TV image the whole truth? There is much to learn from watching those programmes with a critical eye but I’ve yet to find a typical entrepreneur. They are all different.

Will you need a formal education? No. My background includes no formal education yet I’ve been a successful serial entrepreneur since the 1970s.

Will you need a business education. Again no, though understanding some basics will do you no harm. You can learn it as you go. At The Academy for Chief Executives we call that experiential business learning®.

Will you need to understand your potential markets? This time it is a yes, though it doesn’t need to be formal market research. You will need to know that your product/service has the potential to meet the needs of enough people to make it pay its way.

Will you need determination and passion? Absolutely! Building a business is hard work and you’ll need to believe in what you are doing and stick with it, especially when, as they will, things veer away from plan.

Is it worth the effort? A lot depends on your purpose in setting up the business. Do you want the freedom of working for yourself; to create something tangible; make a good living; to do something worthwhile or to make a fortune?

All these things are possible. It depends on what you want from your business venture – and it depends on taking some action towards it.

In my current book ‘The Entrepreneur Within’, I quote Goethe“Whatever you think you can do or believe you can do, begin it. Action has magic, grace, and power in it.”

Brian Chernett is founder of The Academy for Chief Executives (ACE) – He has 43 years’ experience as managing director of private and public companies, including subsidiaries of Booker Bros McConnell, the Landmark Group, and several other major companies. Find out more at
The Academy community provides a great place to build your leadership skills and learn more about motivating and developing your people, and how to focus the top team for the good of your company.  As the leading providers of experiential learning, the purpose of the Academy is to inspire leaders to achieve their dreams by sharing and learning from real life experiences.

Leave a Reply