Several months ago, I had the precious opportunity to enjoy breakfast with Michael Moritz (Chairman of Sequoia Capital), Douglas Leone…
5 Key Traits Of Extraordinary Entrepreneurs
5 Key Traits Of Extraordinary Entrepreneurs:
The foundation of the greatest people, companies, or countries in the world rests upon a bedrock of unwavering values. A great entrepreneur knows how to build an enterprise with integrity as its core. He/she lives in such a way that would make his/her mom proud, even if she knew all of his/her worst moments in life. No one is perfect. We all make mistakes. We all fall down. However, we should always strive to do the right thing and to do our best to live with integrity. For me, integrity is doing the right thing, even when no one is watching. A great leader ensures that integrity is the core of every decision and every action across the entire company.
2) Law of Attraction
The greatest entrepreneurs in the world have the ability to attract and retain superstar talent and smart money capital above and beyond what is realistically possible. They have the uncanny ability to identify, attract, and retain people and institutions who can accelerate success along multiple fronts. It means inspiring employees, customers, investors, partners, vendors, and everyone else necessary to join the mission and help the fruition of a vision.
A great entrepreneur knows how to build and nurture a great culture. Culture is the engine of extraordinary performance for an organization. It doesn’t matter how many superstars are in a startup. It matters only how they work together and how committed they are to the values and mission. Values are the core of a culture. Tribes are united by values, and inspired by culture. You cannot have a great, sustainable culture without a strong bedrock of values. You cannot have extraordinary performance without a culture that inspires greatness and unity.
The best entrepreneurs know how to execute at lightning speed. In a world of imperfect information, speed of execution is paramount. A world-class entrepreneur is at ease with making major decisions without perfect information. He/she also inspires a team to achieve above and beyond the call of duty. By definition, great entrepreneurs are great leaders. Leadership has nothing to do with popularity, status, power, money, or fame. Leadership has everything to do with trying to do what is right. True leaders must be fearless in striving to do the right thing for the people they serve, even if they may be misunderstood, ridiculed, mocked, hated, wronged, or feared for their decisions.
As Charles Darwin so aptly put it, it is not the strongest or smartest that survives. It is the one that adapts most efficiently to the changing environment that survives. The best startups listen, learn, absorb, adapt, and evolve every day. In the business world, humility is the key to learning. Humble leaders and staff don’t close their minds to new ways, but they also don’t shun old ways. They surround themselves with greatness to unleash their greatness. They learn from everyone around them. Of course, it is very difficult to maintain humility throughout the process of going from a startup to a billion dollar company. Fame and money do a lot to destroy humility. However, it is no coincidence that some of the most humble people I know are among the most successful people in the world. They are the rare ones who resisted the temptations of success and maintained a level of humility and hunger throughout the process.
These 5 key traits are by no means an exhaustive list of what it takes to be a successful entrepreneur. I believe these 5 traits are merely prerequisites in the world of entrepreneurship. There are a multitude of other factors that are required such as grit, emotional intelligence, intellectual horsepower, common sense, leadership, street hustle, and many other traits, but I won’t go into detail here. Ultimately, entrepreneurship is about changing the world. And it requires everything and more to do so.
Chatri Sityodtong is a self-made entrepreneur and lifelong martial artist from Thailand. His rags-to-riches life story has inspired millions around the world on BBC News, CNN, Financial Times, Bloomberg TV, CNBC, Channel NewsAsia, and other major media. He is the Founder, Chairman, and CEO of ONE Championship, Asia’s largest global sports media property in history with a global broadcast to over 1.7 billion potential viewers across 136 countries around the world. Forbes most recently selected Sityodtong as one of Asia’s next generation tycoons. He was also named “Asia’s King of Martial Arts” by the Financial Times and the “3rd Most Powerful Person in Sports in Asia” by FOX Sports. He is an Entrepreneur-in-Residence at INSEAD, Europe’s top business school. Sityodtong holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and a BA from Tufts University.