Entrepreneurs are never satisfied with the status quo. Like my dad, they’re always thinking of the next thing, the next project. The “Big One.” They enjoy action. They thrive on chaos. Entrepreneurs and business owners have a different relationship with their companies. Entrepreneurs view their companies as assets. Something to be developed, shaped and readied for market. And then sold for a profit so that they can move on to the next “Big One.”
In fact, many of the entrepreneurs I know prefer passion over profits. You never get the impression that guys like Mark Zuckerberg, Reed Hastings or Jeff Bezos did what they did because of the money. Not that they mind it. But entrepreneurs like them are out to change the world. They love what they do and would do it for much, much less.
Unlike my dad, I am not a risk taker. I am not a dreamer. When I make an investment in a new product or technology it’s one that I’m able to lose without feeling it. My gambles are small. I think small. Therefore my returns are small. I am a business owner. I am a small business owner.
Entrepreneurs are more technical than business owners like me. My dad’s proudest achievement was his patent. It was a process for bookkeeping that no one had thought of before. He explained it to me hundreds of times but to this day I still don’t completely understand it. That’s because I’m just not technical like he was. Guys like him love inventions, science, new technologies and new ways to change the world. Guys like me are more interested in profit margins, revenue projections and support costs. Like me, my dad was a Certified Public Accountant. Unlike me, he was actually good at it. He liked numbers. He excelled at the sciences. Like many of the entrepreneurs I’ve met, he would’ve been in his element teaching college classes. And I would’ve been the kid in his class, the future business owner, counting down the minutes to the end.