Ten Key talents of successful entrepreneurs

The ten key talents of successful entrepreneurs are: business focus, confidence, creative thinking, delegation, determination, independence, knowledge-seeking, promotion, relationship-building and risk-taking.
Some level of talent is innate, some can be nurtured.
Each of these traits can be classified in three levels -- dominant, contributing and supporting.
I have summarised the authors' description of the ten talents along with challenges and action items. Read on...
1. Business focus
Traits: Profit-oriented, plan for growth, clear goals, alignment with business, tight operations
Challenges: Can sometimes lose sight of customers
Action points for maximisation: Use timelines and yardsticks, communicate clearly, focus on human element also, read a lot
2. Confidence
Traits: Self-awareness, conviction in ability to succeed, action-oriented, pro-active
Challenges: Over-confidence, haste, over-commitment
Action points for maximisation: Plan ahead, prepare for contingencies, get diverse feedback, avoid the speed trap.
3. Creative thinker
Traits: Firing off many ideas, curious, quick learner, exploratory, imaginative, alert
Challenges: Difficult to work in a team, rushing off in many directions
Action points for maximisation: Balance present and future, use metrics, prioritise, use simple structure, learn from failures.
4. Delegator
Traits: Collaborate, recognise and draw on people's abilities, encourage team contribution
Challenges: Abdicating responsibility, communication gaps
Action points for maximisation: Map processes and skills, allow employees to perform, give effective feedback.
5. Determination
Traits: Persistent, eager to act, confront obstacles, not deterred by roadblocks
Challenges: Sticking with failing strategy, regret with failed steps
Action points for maximisation: Share your optimism, partner with creative types, focus on big picture, be alert to environment.
6. Independent
Traits: Resolute, faith in self, multi-tasking, responsible, multiple competencies, 'can-do'
Challenges: Burnout, difficulty in growing the team to scale the enterprise
Action points for maximisation: Focus on main objective, form alliances, delegate, don't let love for your product blind you.
7. Knowledge-seeker
Traits: Anticipate and use knowledge, drive for in-depth information, knowledge as an asset
Challenges: Generating too many new ideas, too many pivots
Action points for maximisation: Write and share ideas, prioritise, get outside inputs, create a clear roadmap for changes.
8. Promoter
Traits: Communicator, speaks boldly, storyteller, ambassador, persuasive, enthusiastic
Challenges: Becoming blind to flaws, lack of objectivity
Action points for maximisation: Rehearse your story, use multiple media, build a whole community of evangelists and champions.
9. Relationship-builder
Traits: Mutually-beneficial links inside and outside workplace, open, socially aware, integrity
Challenges: Time management, focus, lack of diversity in networks
Action points for maximisation: Diversify and renew networks, reciprocity, understand the local social landscape, be selective.
10. Risk-taker
Traits: Optimistic, rational decisions, charismatic, confident, will to win, can deal with complexity
Challenges: Over-confidence, judgement errors, haste
Action points for maximisation: Take incremental risks, cool off, map knowledge and scenarios, experiment systematically.


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