Develop an Entrepreneurial Mindset

So you think you want to be an entrepreneur.

You probably have a lot questions: What do I need to get started? What does entrepreneurship look like in Missouri? And what does it take to be an entrepreneur? Do I have what it takes?

What makes an entrepreneur an entrepreneur?

At its core, a business is really just a repeatable process of solving problems for other people. The problem just has to be big enough that customers and clients will pay for your product or service. If you’re an entrepreneur, really all that means is that you’re a problem solver.

And it takes some drive and a whole lot of other qualities to push your business idea toward success. Did you know that about half of all small businesses fail in the first five years? Did you know that about 70 percent of those businesses fail because of cash problems?

So in addition to being a creative person who sees opportunities and has the drive to persevere and navigate those rough spots when things get tough, you have to keep the business side of things in mind, too. Keeping things like financials, cash flow, bookkeeping, etc., in focus, in addition to your business goals, is key for success.

What are the characteristics of an entrepreneur?

Many entrepreneurs tend to have these eight qualities:

  1. Initiative and Self-Reliance: Are you a self-starter who can push yourself to get things done?
  2. Flexibility and Adaptation: Are you able and willing to change the course of your business when necessary?
  3. Communication and Collaboration: Can you convey your ideas or pitches clearly and concisely to your target audience, investors, etc. and persuade them to work with you or support your product or service?
  4. Creativity and Innovation: Can you use your creativity to formulate a creative business idea … and use that creativity to solve problems without a clear structure?
  5. Critical Thinking and Problem Solving: Can you examine a problem from multiple perspectives and devise a solution of your own for the best outcome?
  6. Looking to the Future: Are you able to look to the future of your business with optimism and are willing to learn many things along the way to set your business up for success?
  7. Recognizing Opportunity: Are you able to keep your eyes and ears open and spot new opportunities to move your business forward?
  8. Comfortable with Risk: Are you comfortable with making a tough choice to move your business forward, even if there’s risk involved?

Do you think you have what it takes to be a small business owner? If so, you don’t have to do this alone.

What does entrepreneurship in Missouri look like?

Although the news media tends to cover a slew of tech startups, in Missouri, there are many other types of businesses who make up other pieces of the entrepreneurial pie (read Four Types of Entrepreneurship).

  • 72 percent are microentrepreneurs: Those are very small or online business that might only need one person to run and are often based at a home.
  • 26 percent are “Main Street” brick-and-mortar businesses. These are mom and pop shops, restaurants, salons, breweries, stores, etc.
  • 1 percent are innovation-led businesses that are categorized as tech or high-growth companies.
  • 1 percent are second-stage businesses: These are established operations poised for growth.

And entrepreneurs in Missouri aren’t just working in their businesses. They attend events that teach them about key business concepts and strategies and help connect them with other entrepreneurs, investors and over 500 nonprofit organizations in Missouri that exist to help entrepreneurs on their journey.

How do I get an entrepreneurial mindset?

A mindset is really just the underlying beliefs and assumptions you make that influence how you act. The great thing is a mindset is malleable; you can shape and change the way your brain is programmed so you can think like an entrepreneur.


Call us at 866-870-6500 or tell us a bit about what you need, and we’ll craft your very own (totally doable) action plan that’ll show you exactly whom in Missouri you can contact to move your business or nonprofit forward. All of our services are free.


Check out Missouri’s most comprehensive calendar for small businesses. Peruse tons of events each month that can help your business and connect you with other like-minded entrepreneurs in Missouri. Take a class (many are free or at a reduced cost) to get the skills you need for success.


And stay in the know with helpful advice from experts, read some inspirational stories about Missouri entrepreneurs’ journeys and get a curated list of key events in the metro that’ll help your business. It’s all here in our newsletter.

A business coach from the Missouri Small Business Development Center and the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship provided insight for this guide.

Organizations in Missouri that can help

The MOSourceLink Resource Partners below offer courses, coaching and training to help get in the entrepreneurial mindset and test the feasibility of your idea.

Head over to The Resource Navigator to customize your search by business industry, zip code/city/distance and/or specific need—or just give us a call at 866-870-6500 and we’ll make your Personal Action Plan of next-step resources for free.

Want to filter this list further?

Want to know who does this in your community? Head over to The Resource Navigator to customize your search by business industry, zip code/city/distance and/or specific need—or just give us a call at 866-870-6500 and we’ll make your Personal Action Plan of next-step resources for free.

>> Remember if you need help, give us a call at 866-870-6500 or send us a message. We can guide you through the next steps you need to take to start your business.


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