HM Insights

You are an entrepreneur. Yes YOU.

Article provided by Lucy-Rose Walker, Co-Founder at Misadventures In Entrepreneuring.

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There’s no denying that our social media feeds are flooded with messages about what we should and could be doing to survive and thrive at the moment and it can be easy to feel like you don’t know where to direct your energy or your efforts. Should I be battening down the hatches? Should I be changing direction? Should I be hunting out opportunities in a crisis? Should I be slowing down or speeding up?

It is also true that ‘crisis’ is the playground of the entrepreneur, and that more creative ideas come from adversity than any other time. So, the messages and pressure to think and respond “like an entrepreneur would” in a crisis can be daunting? They shouldn’t be though.

What does “responding like an entrepreneur” look like?

At a high level, it is about skills that we would normally associate with entrepreneurs like innovation and creativity, constant learning, leadership and taking initiative. In 2018 the World Economic forum published the Future of Jobs report in which they identified the 10 top skills that will be important in the workplace by 2022. They included the ones I have just mentioned as well as other classic entrepreneurial skills and behaviours such as problem solving, critical thinking and emotional intelligence.

You could be forgiven for feeling as though these are a little abstract at the moment, or for panicking as you thought you had 2 more years to work on them. But here’s the good news – you’re probably already doing most of the skills listed in the table above and not giving yourself the credit. I’ll bet you’re already much more entrepreneurial than you think!

We’re already behaving like entrepreneurs

As we sit here today in the midst of a global turmoil, we are in awe of the giant leap the world has made, quite literally overnight, towards firstly remote working. For those of us for whom this is the norm, it’s easy to sit back and say, ‘where have you been?’. But for so many it wasn’t a reality, until it was, and look at you go - solving your own problems, critically thinking, flexing and adapting to change.

You don’t have to be building pop up hospitals, or manufacturing masks from nappies to be innovative, most of us are just doing what comes naturally by acclimatising to virtual birthday parties or boardroom drinks, and things that can be posted through our letterbox. We’re all learning on the hoof and making the best out of our situation whether we class ourselves as an entrepreneur or not.

Repetition is the mother of learning

You may not have thought about it until now, but this is what many entrepreneurs are doing daily. And like anything you practice daily, you get better and better at it the more you practice until you don’t have to try any more.

The same is true for you. You might have told yourself you can’t be creative or you’re not good at critical thinking but when you had to figure out how to set up a home office, keep the kids entertained, shop for your parents and keep yourself sane all at the same time you used those exact muscles.

Mental strength and resilience aren’t things that are already inbuilt in us, and we weren’t born with a problem-solving bone. It’s more like a muscle that grows over time, exercising it in situations that would require it. The more times you encounter setbacks and overcome challenges the more muscle memory you have created for the future.

And right now, when we’re feeling a little weary or vulnerable, is exactly when we can draw on that muscle memory to guide us through what for some may be the most challenging circumstances. If you’re struggling right now, it’s time to pull on what your mental training and practice has taught you about overcoming adversity.

So, ask yourself today how many of these entrepreneurial skills have you used already and not given yourself credit for? Now is the time to celebrate just how far you’ve come, even in a few weeks. And if you really thought about it, how many more have you honed that you can call on now when you need them the most? It’s time to unlock that inner entrepreneur and take back some control.

 

Article provided by Lucy-Rose Walker, Co-Founder at Misadventures In Entrepreneuring.

To find out more about Misadventures In Entrepreneuring visit: http://misadventuresinentrepreneuring.com/ 

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