What are the types of entrepreneurship?

There are many different types of entrepreneurship in the world today. Happy entrepreneurs want to start businesses that fit their lifestyle, worldview, and aspirations. This makes perfect sense if you realize that the business is an extension of your personality.

For some entrepreneurs, profit is everything. They want to build the biggest company in the world, dominating the market. For others, profit and world domination is less important than making the world a better place.

Entrepreneurs start businesses every day. Whether you want to start a location-independent lifestyle business or build a business empire, you must first decide what type of entrepreneur you want to be. It will guide you on what type of business best fits your personality, passion, and financial goals.

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Freelance entrepreneurship

Are freelancers entrepreneurs? Freelancing is a type of entrepreneurship. It’s a simple type of entrepreneurship, one in which you trade your time for money. This type of business is more like a job. But it isn’t a job. As a freelancer, you earn money by working for one or several different clients.

Some people don’t consider freelancers entrepreneurs. But they are wrong. Freelancing is entrepreneurship. Being a freelancer gives you freedoms you wouldn’t have as an employee. Many digital nomads are freelancers. Most freelancers are location-independent entrepreneurs. If you are new to entrepreneurship, freelancing could be a great start for you.

Examples of freelance entrepreneurship:

  • Writer
  • Virtual assistant
  • App developer
  • UX designer
  • Python developer
  • Delivery (food, package, document)
  • Tutor
  • Photographer
  • Language teacher
  • Web designer
  • Coder or Programmer
  • Translator
  • Yoga instructor
  • Graphic designer
  • Attorney
  • Copy editor
  • House cleaning
  • Junk removal
  • Music teacher
  • Massage therapy
  • Voiceover
  • Transcriber
  • Personal trainer
  • Nutrition consultant
  • Tour guide

Work from home business entrepreneurship

With 15 million home businesses in the United States, you know that this on of the most popular types of entrepreneurship today. A home-based business requires a lot less money than starting a brick-and-mortar business. Professional service providers like accountants, attorneys, and web designers start home-based businesses.

This type of entrepreneurship appeals to those who prefer working from home. Even though home businesses don’t always get the respect they deserve, some of the largest companies, like Harley Davidson, Apple, Nike, Disney, Microsoft, Mattel, Amazon, and Google, were started in homes.

Examples of home business entrepreneurship:

  • Catering
  • Massage
  • Blogger
  • Virtual assistant
  • Writer
  • Ecommerce business owner
  • Hairstylist
  • Grant writing
  • Debt collection
  • Daycare
  • Publisher
  • Translation
  • Makeup artist
  • Commercial or office cleaning
  • Language teaching
  • Software development
  • Tattoo artist
  • Web design
  • Graphic design
  • Consulting
  • Home inspection

Startup entrepreneurship

Entrepreneurship is about being your own boss. But, startup entrepreneurship is more about an idea that may revolutionize an industry. So, if you are a startup entrepreneur, your idea has to be so big that it will excite investors enough to make capital available to your venture.

Startup entrepreneurship is the riskiest type of entrepreneurship because most cannot transform their big idea into a real business. But, when this type of business takes off, it can change the world; think of Google, Facebook, or Amazon.

Startup entrepreneurship is ideal for those who want to take over the world. If you are willing to work a hundred hours a week for years without a paycheck, this may be your type of business to start. If you pull it off, you will have superstar status in the world.

Some could view startup entrepreneurship as a gamble due to the high failure rate. Unfortunately, about 90 percent of startups fail.

Social entrepreneurship

Entrepreneurs passionate about solving social problems with their products and services fit in this category of entrepreneurship. Social entrepreneurship is less about profits and more about making the world a better place. In this type of business, the focus isn’t on maximizing shareholder value as it is for a Fortune 500 corporation. While a large corporation may contribute money toward social causes, social entrepreneurs create organizations that fund solutions that directly address social issues.

Social entrepreneurs don’t start businesses to make big profits or create personal wealth. Instead, these entrepreneurs start small businesses or nonprofits with a mission to work toward social good.

Examples of social entrepreneurship:

  • Charity: water
  • Jaipur Rugs
  • Seventh Generation
  • Zola Electric
  • Barefoot College

Large company entrepreneurship

Large company entrepreneurship doesn’t involve building a new business from the ground up. This type of entrepreneurship is more about one large corporation making a small bet (sometimes not so small) on a new idea. Large corporations often create new business divisions instead of buying companies.

Instead of buying a company for their intellectual property, market share or industry standing, CEOs of large enterprises seek to create a more innovative company within the larger enterprise.

Examples of large company entrepreneurship:

  • Google
  • Samsung
  • Amazon
  • Microsoft

How to become a successful entrepreneur?

Entrepreneurs come from all walks of life from all kinds of backgrounds. There is no rule that you will be a successful entrepreneur if your parents are entrepreneurs. Entrepreneurs don’t graduate with the same or even similar college degrees. And many of them are not even college-educated. What is common about entrepreneurs is that they often seek out mentors. Many of them credit their success to the mentors they had.

What are the most important steps to becoming a successful entrepreneur?


Identify a business idea you are passionate about

The most important aspect of becoming a successful entrepreneur is to come up with your business idea. Now, this is tricky because your idea has to be something people are willing to pay for. Therefore, your business idea can only succeed if enough customers will buy your product or pay for your service.

How to test your business idea?

The sad reality of entrepreneurship is most businesses fail within the first couple of years of trading. Entrepreneurs who failed in business never tested their business idea. If you want to succeed in business, you must thoroughly test your business idea.

Create a minimum viable product

Interview potential customers about your idea. Ask their input about potential features, etc. Then, create a minimum viable product or a prototype to give people enough information to give you feedback.

Don’t push your business idea on people. Instead, allow them to give you their honest feedback. Listen to their input instead of arguing with them about their feedback. Then, based on what you learn, make adjustments to your product.

How to fund a business with no money?

Even if you don’t have a lot of money, you can still start a successful business. It’s even possible to start a business with no money. Some people think that you have to be rich to start a business, but that’s not true.

If you don’t have money to start a business, you can still fund it in several ways:

  • Partner with someone who has startup capital.
  • Apply for a small business loan.
  • Ask your family or friends for the funds to start a business.
  • Research government grants and funding opportunities.
  • Apply to business incubators and accelerator programs.
  • Find angel investors to help you with funding.
  • Consider crowdfunding to get the funding you need to make your product.

How to effectively sell your product (or service)?

No business can succeed without sales. Your ability to sell your product or service will make or break your new company. For that to happen, you need to match product benefits or service offerings with customer needs.

It’s not enough to have a product or service; you must find ways to communicate its value to your target customers. Guide the customer through the buying process and make sure they are happy at the end of the transaction.

To effectively sell your product, you must be ready to answer customer questions and objections. This cannot happen in a vacuum. You have to get out there and talk to potential customers long before you have finished building your product. Make time to speak with potential customers while building your product to get their feedback and understand their questions. So, by the time you are ready to sell, you have linked each product feature to a customer benefit.

What is that special something that makes a successful entrepreneur?

The world is full of larger-than-life tales about successful entrepreneurs. You read about the wild rides to success and the horrible failures.  But what is special about successful entrepreneurs? There is not one special skill that makes an entrepreneur successful. Rather, it is a combination of skills and a unique state of mind.

So what defines a real entrepreneur?

From day one, being an entrepreneur is risky. Real entrepreneurs have to take on some degree of risk. They either quit a perfectly good job or never really look for one. Some are unemployable or gradually become unemployable. Then, they start a business, knowing – and often ignoring – that the odds are against them. The fact is that most businesses fail. An entrepreneur must know that before anything else. That in itself is enough to scare most people back to their jobs.

You know that you are an entrepreneur if you are less interested in how much money you make with your business than being your own boss.

So what is so special about these real entrepreneurs?

Above all else, real entrepreneurs refuse to fit into a box. Who they are and what they do doesn’t always make sense right away. One thing is true for sure. They are driven. They are more interested in starting an building a business than the business itself. If they don’t start this business, they will start another. If they fail with this business, sooner or later, they will start another business. They don’t back down easy.

Every single one is entirely different without even trying to be different. They get no pleasure from copying someone else but instead choose to forge their own path, follow their own instincts, and relentlessly pursue the things that they are passionate about.

Money is not the primary motivator.

In the pursuit of their passions, these entrepreneurs often forget about getting rich or making a profit. In their minds, profits exist but are not the main driving force. What they want is to succeed. To reach a goal or beat the odds. They want to be the best in the business, the best web designer or the best technical writer.

Because they refuse to get caught up in the financial gains, they are often able to focus more intently on what they do, rather than counting the money in their bank accounts.

Passion is what it’s all about.

Real entrepreneurs are passionate, but they are not dreamers. Their thoughts and drives jump out in conversations and actions continually. Whatever the world thinks about what they do matters very little to them. They remain focused on the goal at hand regardless of what people think. They drive ahead not because people approve but because they are driven by a burning desire from within.

Entrepreneurs are risk-averse.

Entrepreneurs are not thrill seekers. Just like money isn’t the primary motivator for a real entrepreneur, neither is the risk. They are willing to accept the risk to be able to follow their passion, but they aren’t seeking some kind of high just for the fact that they are taking a risk. Instead, they let their passions outweigh their fears.

Entrepreneurs know how to find the right partners.

They don’t set out to be leaders, but people often follow them. While they may become leaders due to their singular focus, they know how to partner with others who have the skills to help them to pursue their passions. Most true entrepreneurs aren’t great at running the day-to-day aspects of a company, so they trust the operations to one or more team members, allowing them to continue to focus on creating and casting vision.

They are not always easy to work with. Because they bring such a great degree of passion and focus, they often don’t wait around for results. This means that they are not always easy to communicate with, as they don’t follow the standard rules of social interactions or business. They can be stubborn but often turn on a dime if they realize they are in the wrong.

In the end, what makes entrepreneurs so special is that they are passionate about pursuing their dreams. They do this by knowing that there is a greater chance for failure than success, but they still move forward. If you want to become an entrepreneur just to be one, the chances are that you won’t succeed. Instead, if you are driven to strike out on your own and are willing to give it every ounce of your focus and energy, you may just be a genuine entrepreneur.