Want to Truly Succeed? Here are 8 Traits of Successful Business Owners

There are far too many reasons business owners & entrepreneurs fail; hence the 90% failure rate.  While understanding those risks and traits is important, here are some studied and proven traits among the successful 10%:

1. Passion

2. Strong desire to ‘win’

3. Humbleness

4. Have a coach or mentor, and are coach-able

5. Fail upward experience

6. Understand why potential buyers would buy from them vs. others

7. Optimistic and persistent

8. Focused – excellent time management, disciplined & even selfish with their time

Let’s focus on #8 as I find this is the biggest struggle for business owners across the board – Excellent Time Management.

Successful business owners understand the role they play best in their company. They understand when to source or delegate certain tasks/functions.  Successful business owners understand the implications and trade-offs when they say ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to issues or opportunities.  Most have keen insight that the future of their company is dependent on them growing it;  therefore, strategic planning & acting is critical.  Leveraging the good work of the late Stephen Covey, I coach business owners to commit a certain percentage of their time in quadrant 2 – working ‘on’ their business.  This quadrant is also known as ‘Important and Not Urgent’. What does this look like?  This includes dedicated time to accomplish goals, in addition to the following:

-Vision, Perspective & Core Beliefs


-Relationship Building

-Risk Management

-Capability Improvement

-Value Creation


So why is this quadrant/activity so elusive for many business owners? Most understand the importance of it;  they just don’t have the discipline to get there.  Therein lies a key differentiator between success and failure.

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