30 million Americans are business owners who supply their local communities with products and services. Through this, they contribute millions of dollars and jobs to the US economy.

The phrase "business owner" is often used interchangeably with the word "entrepreneur." Some may insist they are both. However, there are certainly some business owners who are looking for stable growth and a long-term future for the business they have created. Conversely, there are some entrepreneurs who are excited by the vision of creating products or services that have never existed before. Here we explore the similarities and the differences.

7 Characteristics of a Business Owner

  1. Business owners can be found working out of their garages, or from storefronts on High Street or even on corporate business campuses. They accept this is not a 9 to 5 job.
  2. The first two years will be rough but there is light at the end of the tunnel. A key goal is ensuring sufficient capital to support the business in its early, lean years. Any surplus cash will be applied to the growth of the business.
  3. Business owners know how to make detailed plans, execute them, and train and lead a team.
  4. They are highly motivated to do what it takes. They will dedicate the needed effort, make the sacrifices, and hustle to achieve success.
  5. They stay optimistic about the future of their business even through rough times. They are always visible in the company and help sustain a positive attitude.
  6. Business owners often set their sights on a business that will be there for the long term. They invest in the right people by providing training they may need and by rewarding their efforts. Their employees know that their door is always open and that they will always be treated with fairness and respect.
  7. They are aware of all the regulations, that is federal laws, state laws, and city laws, that apply to them as business owners.

7 Characteristics of an Entrepreneur

  1. The entrepreneurial idea may come from passion or from observation of what is lacking in the present marketplace. In many cases, others may find the idea somewhat unbelievable, but this does not deter them.
  2. They started with limited resources and were willing to take the risks to achieve their goals.
  3. They sacrifice everything, their financial security and their career, to ensure their venture has the necessary capital and skilled employees to assure success.
  4. Their business idea may entail a great deal of risk, but that may deter others from trying to copy what they are developing and may lead to a higher return.
  5. Selling a product or service that no one has heard of represents a supreme challenge. They believe in getting rapid feedback from potential users, so as quickly as possible they are testing out prototypes and improving them based on real-life feedback.
  6. Entrepreneurs will often hire people with complementary skills so that they can concentrate on the company's long-term strategy.
  7. Entrepreneurs will often ensure they have an exit strategy to move on to the next challenge. They may well be motivated more by exciting change than by stability.

7 Habits They Share

  1. Having a business plan is essential for success. It defines the mission of the enterprise and the short- and long-term goals. It sets out what you will supply to your customers, how you will finance your business and the financial goals you have set for yourself.
  2. You are aware of your company's strengths and ensure they are used to maximum advantage.
  3. You are aware of your own and your company's weaknesses and are continually seeking ways of overcoming these.
  4. You maintain a lively watch on opportunities and threats in the marketplace and what any competitors you may have are doing.
  5. It all depends on customers and you do what is needed to keep them satisfied. You encourage your team to seek feedback from customers, particularly any who are in the least bit dissatisfied. In this way, you can be sure you are selling the very best product or service.
  6. The culture in the company will be set by you. You hire people who share your values and you provide a strong example of how things should be done.
  7. You know when it is important to get legal advice and you act promptly on these occasions.

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