Entrepreneurship is an exciting and challenging endeavor that requires innovation, creativity, and the willingness to take risks. Entrepreneurs play a critical role in the economy as their ventures create jobs and drive innovation. If you are planning to start your own business journey, you should know what kind of entrepreneur you are. This article gives you a complete overview of the various types of entrepreneurs to help you work effectively and grow your business.
Who is an Entrepreneur?
An entrepreneur is an individual who starts and runs their own business. They create new products or services with the intent of obtaining profits from them. Entrepreneurship is a challenging and risky venture. But, if you have a passion for innovation and a desire to make a difference, pursuing a career in it can be highly rewarding too. In essence, there may be different types of entrepreneurs but they share these common characteristics:
- Risk tolerance
Types of Entrepreneurship
There are various types of entrepreneurs depending on their aspirations, goals, and business size. Hence, having a clear understanding of the different types of entrepreneurs can help you decide what kind of entrepreneur you want to become. Thus, this is a defining aspect to determine your business goals, objectives, and future. Now, let’s take a look at the different types of entrepreneurs in detail.
Nine Different Types of Entrepreneurship
1. Small Businesses
Small business entrepreneurs start and run businesses within their community. They are experts in their fields and are passionate about delivering a specific product or service to their local target audience. Starting a small business requires a lot of commitment, long hours, hard work, dedication, and flexibility. These entrepreneurs have the opportunity to make a positive impact on their community and create jobs for others.
2. Large Firms
Large firm entrepreneurs are individuals who have started and grown a business to a significant size. They have successfully navigated the challenges they face while doing so and have built a reputable and profitable company. These entrepreneurs drive innovation and create jobs for thousands of people. Their wealth of experience and knowledge in the industry make them apt leaders for their fields.
Large firm entrepreneurs are not afraid to take risks and put in the time and effort required to build a business that requires a significant investment of time, money, and resources. They must have the ability to adapt, make quick decisions, attract and retain talented employees, and create a strong corporate culture.
Example: Larry Page and Sergey Brin, co-founders of Google.
3. Startup Entrepreneurs
Startup entrepreneurs have an idea for a new business and are willing to take the risk of starting one. They are driven by the desire to create something new and potentially make a significant impact in their industry. Getting a startup off the ground is not easy as these types of ventures often face many challenges, such as limited resources, lack of experience, and market validation. Startup entrepreneurs must be willing to take risks and be prepared for failure. These entrepreneurs have the advantage of being more agile, adaptive, and innovative as compared to their large firm counterparts. They are also the ones who tend to push the boundaries and come up with new unique ideas and products that can change the way the industry works.
Example: Genevieve Ryan Bellaire, founder and CEO of Realworld, an application started in 2017 to help young adults transition from college into the working world.
4. Scalable Startup Entrepreneurs
Scalable startup entrepreneurs are individuals who have started a business with the goal of growing it to a significant size. Some examples of scalable startups include Facebook (Meta), Twitter, Amazon, and Netflix. Scalable startup entrepreneurs are focused on creating a business model that can be easily replicated and scaled to a larger audience. These entrepreneurs have a clear vision of how to grow their businesses and can execute that vision. A scalable startup has a high chance of failure and it requires a lot of hard work and commitment from the entrepreneurs. However, despite the roadblocks and challenges, scalable startup entrepreneurs are at the forefront of innovation and have the potential to make a significant impact in the world with their businesses.
Example: Kevin Bennett, founder of an auto fintech company Caribou, which gained unicorn status in 2022.
5. Social Entrepreneurs
Social entrepreneurs use their business acumen to create a positive social or environmental impact. They are driven by a desire to make a difference and seek to address a social issue or to make the world a better place. Social entrepreneurs often look to serve underserved areas or create environment-friendly products. Their philanthropic activities are vital to society and play a crucial role in changing lives, addressing social issues, and making a positive impact in society.
Example: Scott Harrison, the entrepreneur behind charity: water, a non-profit organization delivering clean drinking water to people in need across the world.
6. Imitative Entrepreneurship
Imitative entrepreneurship refers to the process of creating a business by copying or adapting an existing concept or business model. These entrepreneurs take an existing business idea, product, or service and replicate it. This is often done with slight modifications in a different market or location. One of the main advantages of imitative entrepreneurship is that it requires less investment in research and development. Imitative entrepreneurs need to nevertheless differentiate themselves from existing businesses; otherwise they risk being seen as copycats.
7. Innovative Entrepreneurship
Innovative entrepreneurs create a new business by introducing a new product, service, or business model never seen before in the market. Moreover, such entrepreneurs are willing to take risks. They often have a unique approach and a clear vision on how to grow their businesses and execute that vision. In addition, such entrepreneurs are often pushing boundaries and making a change in the world with their unique ideas.
Example: Oleg Rogynskyy, founder and CEO of People.ai, an enterprise revenue intelligence platform that helps teams boost enterprise sales using artificial intelligence and machine learning.
8. Buyer Entrepreneurship
Buyer entrepreneurs use their wealth to acquire an existing business to create a new one. These entrepreneurs often take over the operations, management, and ownership of the business they think will be successful. They have the skills, experience, and resources to identify, evaluate, and acquire existing businesses. Buyer entrepreneurs must be able to evaluate the financial, operational, and strategic aspects of the business and make sure the acquisition will be profitable for them.
Example: Elon Musk, co-founder of companies such as Tesla, SpaceX, Paypal, bought the social media company Twitter for $44 Billion.
9. Researcher Entrepreneurship
Research entrepreneurs create new businesses by conducting research and development activities. They develop new ideas, products, or services that are based on scientific research and experimentation. These entrepreneurs typically have a background in science or engineering and have the skills to turn their findings into a business venture. They are capable of creating new technologies and solutions that can solve pressing problems in society and have a clear vision to turn their research into a profitable business.
Example: Physicist Jan Goetz co-founded IQM Quantum Computers, a company dedicated to building quantum computers for research laboratories and supercomputing centers.
Learning Entrepreneurship, the Emeritus Way
Now that you have a clear understanding of the various types of entrepreneurs, you’re better placed to create a business that best suits you. While it can be quite challenging, this is also a rewarding experience as it allows you to be in control of your own destiny, make a positive impact on society, and earn a significant income while doing so. If you are looking to start and grow your own business, explore these entrepreneurship courses offered by Emeritus.
By Krati Joshi
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