An entrepreneur is an individual who begins their journey with just one idea (often a brilliant one) and pours all of their heart, soul and energy into making this idea a resounding success. The focus of an entrepreneur is to start a business and make it profitable while incurring the least amount of expenses.
A conventional entrepreneur doesn’t often start a second business simultaneously with the first one, as they fear that they’ll neglect their ongoing business.
A serial entrepreneur, however, isn’t afraid to come up with business ideas and launch multiple ventures at the same time.
If you love entrepreneurship and taking risks, the idea of becoming a serial entrepreneur might be for you.
What is a Serial Entrepreneur?
A serial entrepreneur is an exceptionally creative person who brings up new business concepts, develops them and turns them into a new and potentially profitable venture. It’s someone who can afford to fail repeatedly. When their business flops, they don’t throw in the towel right away. Instead, they learn from their mistakes and failures and start all over again.
How Can They Juggle Multiple Business Ventures?
When serial entrepreneurs work on a business idea, this doesn’t necessarily mean that they are going to do everything by themselves. Once their venture begins gaining traction, they will find the best people to manage and run this specific business. This enables them to give each of their companies ample focus and time.
What’s more, this strategy allows serial entrepreneurs to experiment with new concepts and find out if their idea would work in the market.
Famous Serial Entrepreneurs
Some of the famous entrepreneurs you hear on the media may be serial entrepreneurs. Even though some people associate these incredible innovators with a particular product, startup or company, they run multiple and successful ventures.
Here are a few names:
A great example of a serial entrepreneur is the highly popular and innovative Elon Musk. He’s the founder of SolarCity, SpaceX and Tesla, as well as the co-founder of PayPal and Neuralink.
Elon had the urge to pursue entrepreneurship at a young age. He may seem like a cool and laid back guy at first glance, but he’s really an intense risk-taker. This enabled him to make a fortune — and become one of the wealthiest people in the world.
Thanks to Elon’s unfaltering entrepreneurial spirit and unceasing efforts, he continues to inspire young people to follow in his footsteps.
A lot of people know Oprah as a television talk show host. What many don’t know, however, is that she’s one of the most successful female serial entrepreneurs in the world. Her business portfolio consists of Harpo Films (a film production company), Harpo Productions, Inc. (a television production company), Oprah Winfrey Network (a TV network), O, The Oprah Magazine (a magazine publication) and more.
Before Oprah became a successful serial entrepreneur, she worked as a news anchor. She was the first African-American female to hold this position. Then, she began hosting “The Oprah Winfrey Show,” a highly popular talk show that aired for 25 seasons.
On top of her outstanding career on TV, Oprah is an accomplished actress. She played the role of Sofia in the movie “The Color Purple,” where she was nominated for Best Supporting Actress in the 58th Academy Awards.
Sir Richard Branson
This knight is the man behind Virgin, a brand that has over 500 businesses operating under its umbrella. He began his solopreneur journey at 16 years of age by launching a magazine titled “Student.” He then went on to start a chain of record stores and a mail-order record business that flourished in the ‘80s.
Richard didn’t stop there. He pushed the boundaries further by setting up a music record label and an airline with the brand name “Virgin.”
What are the Qualities of a Successful Serial Entrepreneur?
Being a risk-taker isn’t the only trait present in a successful serial entrepreneur. This wonderful innovator also possesses the following qualities:
Stable and Solid Leadership Ability
You can’t grow several businesses under your belt without effective leadership. Although you have the option to hire talented leaders to take care of the various aspects of your organization, you need the ability to lead these executives.
What’s more, you must be able to adopt new and effective leadership strategies depending on the situation. What works with one company may not be effective for the next or your other businesses. When you become a serial entrepreneur, you should know how to skillfully change your leadership style and adapt to the right situation.
Great Team Player
Becoming a serial entrepreneur doesn’t mean that you’re the only person leading the business idea. You need to know when to take help from partners or people who can help you reach your goal of turning your business concept into something successful.
Excellent Time Management Skills
Knowing how to manage your time wisely is another important trait of a serial entrepreneur.
You won’t be able to grow several businesses at the same time if you are unable to do the following:
- Shift from one job role or responsibility to another with little hesitation
- Tune in to important updates and tune out noise that distract you from your goals
- Compartmentalize your time
Effective time management is also important in the little things you do in the office. You should, for instance, know exactly what to do when you open the browser on your computer. Also, you must know how to effectively schedule meetings throughout the day without overlapping and compromising.
As a serial entrepreneur, you are your own boss. Although you may have friends and investors who hold you accountable for what you do, you’re ultimately the one calling the shots. If you don’t have the discipline to stay on track, you’re going to trip and spiral out of control.
When you have excellent discipline, you don’t need people to light a fire underneath you or have anyone else tell you what to do next. You work hard because of your desire to succeed.
How to Become a Successful Serial Entrepreneur
Running multiple companies isn’t for the faint of heart. It requires a lot of dedication and work.
If you’re thinking of becoming the next Elon Musk or Richard Branson, take note of these tips:
Learn from Your Mistakes
Ideas don’t pan out. Products fail. Hired employees and executives become toxic. Businesses go bankrupt.
Serial entrepreneurs can’t avoid screw-ups completely. It’s a fact of life. What you can do, however, is to turn the mistakes you’ve made into learning experiences and opportunities.
Focus on the Idea, Not the Capital Required to Launch that Idea
When people launch a business, they tend to focus too much on raising money to turn their ideas into reality. Although capital is important, you shouldn’t neglect your focus on developing your business concepts. Fine-tune your ideas first before you seek funding or financial assistance.
Learn How to Delegate Tasks
If you’re running more than one business, you’ll know how time-consuming and tough this journey can get. As a budding serial entrepreneur, you should learn how to hire talented people you can trust. Then, hand off some of your day-to-day responsibilities to those team members.
Choose One Location as Your Base of Operations
Having different offices for each of your companies can be appealing, as you can compartmentalize your life a bit better. This setup, however, isn’t a good idea, as you’ll wind up wasting more time driving to these individual locations.
Instead, centralize your base of operations by choosing one office that serves as your direct point of contact. Keep all your stock reports, finances, files and other documents in that location. This arrangement will help you boost your productivity and keep better track of everything.
Not everyone has the skills and attitude necessary to become a successful serial entrepreneur. If this is your goal in life, you’ll need the fortitude, patience and strength to hang on when times get tough and things don’t go your way.