Entrepreneur . . . this is a buzz word in our culture today.
What does it mean?
Webster defines it as the activity of organizing, managing and assuming the risks of a business. It also can be defined as solving a problem where the solution is not obvious and success is not guaranteed. We experience the foundation of being an entrepreneur when we make the choice to further our education. Although we are not guaranteed anything, we still make the choice to learn new things.
There are a few monumental times in my life where this unknown feeling signaled me into wonderful opportunities. Right before I graduated from college, I decided to work on a dude ranch in Shawnee, Colorado for the summer. In my application for employment, I painted the picture of why they should hire me. At age 2, I started horse back riding with my Daddy. Living on a family farm created the opportunity for me to learn to love riding and caring for my horse. All this preparation made it possible for me to embrace an opportunity at age 21. I am so grateful to my parents for providing the environment for me to be confident in making this application to be wrangler on a dude ranch. There were lots of unknowns going into this summer job, but after a summer of leading pack trips, organizing a rodeo each week and meeting people from all over the world, my thinking was impacted forever.
Another leap of faith moment was when I decided to open a mortgage office in Boulder, Colorado, and I was the lone ranger. I worked in four different time zones, and the challenges were like scaling a 14,000 foot mountain. That opportunity led me another opportunity to expand my education in the mortgage industry. During this time, my husband and I were taking advantage of every opportunity to enjoy skiing, biking and hiking – the reason we moved to Colorado.
In June 1998, I was presented with another opportunity to jump into the unknown, a whole different industry! I knew nothing about the products, the process or the company, but I did know one thing to be true, I knew people. In changing industries, I began to realize that “my business” was people. Was I willing to educate myself and stretch my limits without snapping to receive the benefits of this new opportunity? Another 14,000 foot moment!
So the journey began with learning the products and the process. I approached this opportunity with many unknowns. Just as before, I knew that my path would be made straight with many new relationships and lessons. This year will mark my 20th anniversary on this journey. I have met the most fascinating people and learned so many lessons. My greatest lesson and gift has been to learn what it means to be an entrepreneur.
What does it mean to be an entrepreneur? It is simple. Being an entrepreneur is owning your thought life. You can own a business, be an accomplished leader as an employee or enjoying retirement. These stages of life require one common element and that is your choice on how to embrace the unknowns.
The women you see in the picture on today’s blog are just a few of the many women I have had the opportunity to life with over the years. We have celebrated together, cried together, prayed together, worked together and played together. They represent my inner circle. Do we all agree? Absolutely not. In fact, we have had to agree to disagree many times. In spite of our differences, we have one thing in common . . . we are entrepreneurs. We are willing to grow ourselves so we can grow our organizations and enrich each other’s lives.
Entrepreneur – it is a state of mind. Self awareness gives us a sense of anticipation for further growth. Entrepreneurs pursue significance instead of success. They live from values not circumstances. Entrepreneurs are intentional in everything they do. Are you watching things happen? Are you letting things happen? Are you making things happen?
Until next Friday. . .