What Drives the Entrepreneur in You?

You’re either an entrepreneur or you’re not. Right?

Well, according to Heart, Smarts, Guts, and Luck: What it Takes to be an Entrepreneur and Build a Great Business, success in business creation is not dependent on just one “it” factor. Authors Tony Tjan, Dick Harrington, and Tsun-yan Hsieh argue that, within each successful entrepreneur is a combination of the four driving attributes identified in their book’s title.Heart, Smarts, Guts, and Luck: What it Takes to be an Entrepreneur and Build a Great Business

Furthermore, they argue that knowing which of these four traits drives you could be the key to unlocking your true potential. The book itself won’t be available until August, though you can pre-order it at their site. But as something of a personalized preview, the authors offer the Entrepreneurial Aptitude Test, or EAT, as a sort of entry point to their book.

I took the test (available free online) and got a pretty good idea of where my strengths lie and what possible roadblocks I might throw up in front of myself in the entrepreneurial process. While my results weren’t shocking (I turned out to be heart-driven with smarts coming in at a close second), the advice the authors gave me based on my results were pretty insightful. They quickly zeroed in on my difficulty with delegating, and reminded me that “genuine passion isn’t enough” to build a successful company from scratch.

Along with the results, the authors shared some insightful analyses from their book that helped me place my results within the context of other testees. I also appreciated their ability to take into account the many different stages of creating, scaling, and sustaining one’s own business and the different traits that are most helpful at each stage.

If I had to guess, I’d say real estate professionals vary as much as any other type of entrepreneur out there. But what do you think? Do you and your colleagues display more heart (“what it takes to dream, create, and inspire”), smarts (“the ability to establish, optimize, and ensure”), guts (“the capacity to initiate, endure, and evolve”) or luck (“the impulse to seek, intercept, and engage chance”)?

For such a short investment of time, the EAT is most definitely worth the effort. Take it, and share your results here.

Meg White

Meg White is the managing editor for REALTOR® Magazine and administrator of the magazine's Weekly Book Scan blog. Contact her at mwhite[at]realtors.org.

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