There are a host of reasons why individuals choose to become entrepreneurs over the more traditional route of becoming employees. Only you can decide the life that’s right for you, but with the uncertainty of entrepreneurship also comes tremendous freedom and accountability.
Here are six genuine reasons why people become entrepreneurs:
1. Their creativity doesn’t fit the corporate environment.
You may find that you simply don’t fit in. Sometimes that can feel frustrating, however, if you learn to embrace not fitting into a corporate culture the way many of your friends and family do, you can discover something beautiful.
Steve Jobs perhaps summed this idea up best when he said: “When you grow up you tend to get told that the world is the way it is ... Life can be much broader once you discover one simple fact: Everything around you that you call life was made up by people that were no smarter than you. And you can change it, you can influence it … Once you learn that, you'll never be the same again.”
Your creativity simply may not be cut out for the limitations of corporate life.
2. They want a lifestyle that isn’t bound to nine to five.
There’s a lot of hype about having a flexible lifestyle but the truth in entrepreneurship is that you’re going to work really hard and really long, so don’t choose this way of life if you’re thinking it’s a shortcut. That being said, you will work hard, but there’s much more flexibility to the entrepreneurial lifestyle than the traditional nine to five and two weeks of vacation time that corporate life permits.
As the old adage goes, entrepreneurship is living a few years of your life like most people won’t so that you can spend the rest of your life like most people can’t. It is hard work but with that effort comes the ability to shape your life how you see fit.
3. They’re passionate about learning.
Learning should never stop. Many people equate age, status or certain achievements with the end of their education, but to learn is to be alive. Entrepreneurs are never satiated with the knowledge they have—they are always seeking more. If you find that learning interests you, from formal education to on-the-job discoveries, and that you can never know enough about the things that excite you, then you have identified one of the genuine reasons individuals are driven to be entrepreneurs.
As mega-successful entrepreneur Michael Gerber says: “The entrepreneur in us sees opportunities everywhere we look, but many people see only problems everywhere they look. The entrepreneur in us is more concerned with discriminating between opportunities than he or she is with failing to see the opportunities.”
4. Their ideas are unconventional.
Entrepreneurship takes imagination and perhaps even a dash of insanity. Entrepreneurs are the ones who change the world. They see the world as they want it to be, not how it is. From the genius idea that drove the Wright Brothers to create a flying machine to the madness that drove Steve Jobs and Bill Gates to develop personal computers, entrepreneurs pursue the ideas that others deem crazy.
Albert Einstein said, “Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere.” Entrepreneurs intrinsically understand that logic is limiting but unconventional ideas can change things.
5. They want to do things.
Entrepreneur Guy Kawasaki said, “The best reason to start an organization is to make meaning—to create a product or service to make the world a better place.”
The exploration of meaning and doing work that changes the world is something that drives every entrepreneur. If you find yourself unsatisfied with a life that relegates you to the sidelines or the background, entrepreneurship may well be the right path for you. Entrepreneurs learn by doing and explore with a voracious appetite.
If the status quo is too simple for you, you understand one of the genuine reasons people choose entrepreneurship.
6. They want to change the world.
Entrepreneurs don’t just want to change their lives—they want to change the world.
Mark Twain explained the lure of entrepreneurship best when he wrote, “Twenty years from now, you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”