Not everyone has what it takes to be an entrepreneur.
New research from marketing services and business products provider Deluxe Corporation has found that small business owners share several distinct traits that set them apart from others — including the ability to influence and lead others. Specifically, theyare more than twice as likely to be asked for their opinions about what to buy, places to visit, or restaurants to try and are also more likely to be good at convincing others to try new products.
Additionally, more than three-quarters of the small business owners surveyed described themselves as both leaders and doers.
"We already knew small business owners were risk-takers and leaders," said Tim Carroll, vice president of small business engagement at Deluxe. "These findings reveal how small business owners are wired and what attracts them to a less-predictable career path."
The research identified seven distinct clusters into which small business owners tend to fall:
- All heart: They are in business for one reason only — they want to do what they love and share it with others.
- Encore career: Team players who are entering a second phase of their careers and took a risk with starting their own businesses.
- Passionately confident: Risk-takers who are born to be business owners, enjoy choosing their own paths and are very passionate about their life's work.
- All in the family: Traditional types who inherited their status as small business owners, accounting for their long tenure and larger business size. The study found that more than three-quarters of those surveyed have a family member who has owned a small business previously.
- My way: Self-motivated owners who started their own businesses for the opportunity to get what they most value — control over their schedules and hours. The research shows women were more likely than men to say they started their businesses for flexible hours.
- Mastering the niche: Visionaries who began their businesses because they saw an opportunity and wanted to capitalize on it. The study revealed that men were more likely than women to say they started their businesses because they believed they could do it better than their competitors and more likely to say they always knew they would someday own their own small businesses.
- Boss-me-not: Experienced business professionals who left their for-profit, corporate and usually entirely unrelated jobs for one reason — to be their own bosses. More than half of those surveyed said they always wanted to work for themselves or not have a boss.
The study was based on surveys of more than 1,000 small business owners throughout the United States.