Entrepreneurs have a special passion for changing the world and require a particular set of skills that foster innovation and leadership. Because there are different kinds of businesses, there are also many kinds of entrepreneurship. So, let’s think about the different kinds of entrepreneurship in the market to help you locate your own forward-thinking in the entrepreneurship landscape.


What are the different types of entrepreneurs?


Entrepreneurship refers to different ways of creating, launching and running of a business. But within this modality, people differ in their aspirations, values and goals. As well as in relation to their particular personalities, skills and other characteristics. For some entrepreneurs success is defined according to hard work, while some are geared towards social good, and others are motivated by profit. While all entrepreneurs experience challenges in business, the way they react to them are different, from outlook to resources.


Small business entrepreneurs

Small business entrepreneurship is made up of small business owners like hairdressers, boutiques, plumbers, electricians, grocers and consultants. This accounts for a vast majority of entrepreneurs where their small businesses turn a profit that then supports their families and their modest lifestyles. These entrepreneurs are not particularly interested in large profits and venture capital funding. They are also usually owner-run and employ other family members and local employees in the business.


Large business entrepreneurs

Think: Microsoft, Disney and Google. These types of large businesses are run by entrepreneurs who can innovate over and over again. They operate with large teams and executives who can continuously shift with market demands and create new services and products. These come about when small companies grow into larger ones or they can be acquired by bigger organizations.


Scalable start-up entrepreneurs

Here think of Facebook, Instagram and Uber. These scalable start-ups identify a need in the world and seek to service that need. The often receive funding from large venture capitalists, seek rapid expansion and quickly turn big profits.


Social entrepreneurs

This type of business occurs when an entrepreneur identifies a social problem and seeks to solve this issue with a product or service. They are not chasing profit but are rather motivated by making the world a better place. Here think about someone like Arunachalam Muruganantham, the Indian entrepreneur who (against all odds) sought to change India’s approach to menstrual hygiene.


Innovative entrepreneurs

These entrepreneurs like Steve Jobs and Bill Gates, are consistently coming up with fresh ideas and inventions which are then turned into business ventures. They are often highly motivated and passionate, as well as shrewd marketers, always seeking ways to make their products stand out from the crowd.


Hustler entrepreneurs

These entrepreneurs use sweat equity, driven by the hustle and hard work. They will do whatever it takes to make things work, often cold calling many people in order to make just one sale. They are motivated by aspiration and will do whatever it takes to make the deal.


Imitator entrepreneurs

These entrepreneurs know a good idea when they see it. So, they take other’s great ideas and improve on them in order to make the product better or more profitable. This entrepreneur is located somewhere between the hustler and the innovator. While they can think independently, they started the process imitating others, then improving on what they saw.


Researcher Entrepreneurs

These entrepreneurs really take their time before they launch. Doing as much research as possible in order to understand the market and product trajectory. The rely on data and facts over intuition in order to minimize risk.


Buyer entrepreneurs

This type of entrepreneur uses their wealth to fuel their business plans. They identify promising businesses and then acquire them in order to grow their reach and portfolio. This is a low-risk investment as it involves buying tried and tested businesses. However, there is a barrier to entry as these businesses require substantial wealth in order to propagate new business.


The bottom line

Understanding which type of entrepreneur you are, is an interesting way to look at your career trajectory and envision future plans. What is interesting is that these entrepreneurship roles are not necessarily siloed and may (over time) adapt or converge, depending on your means, business growth and appetite for risk. Being an entrepreneur requires a particular personality and adventurous spirit which comes in many forms, and in turn, brings many opportunities.

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