Read as much as you can about the world, business, and what other entrepreneurs have done. You can be self-taught. You can’t hurt yourself by reading too much.
Learn to get along with people
Share the credit, use ‘we’, not ‘I’, and encourage people to take on leadership roles.
Learn the skill of persuading people
Virtually all of life is about persuading other people to do what you want, but entrepreneurs have a unique skill in convincing people to work for them, to buy their product, to buy their service.
Even Albert Einstein didn’t develop the theory of relativity by himself – he had to persuade the world that he was right, and that people should support his theories.
Learn to communicate
Spoken and written communication is equally important. This is also a vital component in leading by example, and persuading people to follow your lead.
Find something that you believe in and pursue that idea
The most successful companies aren’t necessarily successful because of the best ideas – the best ideas can flounder if the entrepreneur isn’t good at what they do.
You have to take an idea that’s reasonably good and pursue it, refine it, don’t take no for an answer; keep coming back and pushing the idea, and convincing people that you’re worth listening to.
Learn some humility
Arrogance can be helpful, but on the whole it’s more harmful than helpful. Humility makes people want to follow you, believe in you and support you. It’s also a vital characteristic if you’re going to be refining your idea and business until (and after) it’s a success.
The importance of building a company isn’t only to give yourself enormous wealth
It’s to show that you have the ability to create something — and then if you are successful, you have the obligation to give some of that back to society.
Nadine von Moltke-Todd is the Editor-in-Chief of Entrepreneur Media South Africa. She has interviewed over 400 entrepreneurs, senior executives, investors and subject matter experts over the course of a decade. She was the managing editor of the award-winning Entrepreneur magazine from 2010 until 2019, its final print issue. Nadine’s expertise lies in curating insightful and unique business content and distilling it into actionable insights that business readers can implement in their own organisations.