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Tom Clairmont

Helping you pivot through your small business journey.

The Four Types of Entrepreneurs

What’s your ‘E-Type? Are you Type M, P, O or U?

The Four Types of Entrepreneurs

When it’s finally time to put your toe in the entrepreneurial waters, you’ll eventually find that you’ll need to make a decision. A decision of which type of entrepreneur you’ll ultimately be for this current venture that you’re thinking of starting. 

Now this doesn’t mean that once you make a decision, it’s a once and for all decision until the end of time (and a little longer). 

Again, I’m just referring, for this venture only, to ‘which type of entrepreneur you’ll be’ for the idea you want to launch that’s right in front of you.  

Ryan Levesque, in his book ‘Choose’ explains it this way:

There are 4 types of Entrepreneurs:

1. Mission Based

2. Passion Based

3. Opportunity Based

4. Undecided

So, to be clear, you can be a mission based entrepreneur for one venture, and then an opportunity based entrepreneur for another venture. It really depends on the specifics of the task at hand. 

The Mission

The mission based entrepreneur has a clear and specific mission they feel called to pursue; their cause is one they would ‘die on a hill’ for, and their business, therefore, is centered around it. 

Mission based entrepreneurs see some wrong in the world that they want to make right. It’s safe to assume most of these entrepreneurs have a strong moral compass or, at the very least, a desire to make a positive impact in the world. 

I did some transitional coaching and consulting for a non-profit organization called Fresh Water Friends LLC, out of Buffalo NY. They raise money for deep water wells to be installed for poor villages in India and Uganda. 

The Executive Director for FWF at the time lived and breathed installing water wells. 

He was 100% committed to the cause and sacrificed a lot of his personal well being and life comforts as a result. The goal was one well a week. 

That’s a serious goal (if you knew how hard it was with communication and logistics barriers, you’d understand). 

The Passion

The passion based entrepreneur is fueled by a passion that revolves around a topic or subject matter they love, including anything from fishing to photography. 

In contrast to the mission based entrepreneur, who has a mission to right a wrong, in this world, the passion based entrepreneur wants to share their passion with the world and transform it into a business. 

Social media is flooded with passion based businesses hoping to ignite your passion as well.

Mission based is all about serving by moving people away from something negative, whereas passion based is all about serving by moving people toward something positive. 

‘Do you want to learn how to be a better cook? I’ll teach you how,’ is an example. 

The Opportunity

The opportunity based entrepreneur is one who finds and follows a new area of opportunity and growth. 

They see potential where there might be an unsatisfied demand in the market, and are typically the ones who think to themselves, ‘How has someone not solved that problem yet?’

Or, their solving an existing problem a different way. Opportunity based entrepreneurs are drawn to solving a practical problem they’ve come across that represents an unmet need in the marketplace.

Every new gadget or gizmo (it goes way beyond that, I know) that we have was an idea based on an opportunity. 

Like driving a car? There was a time not so long ago that someone saw an opportunity to have something better to get around with besides using a horse. 

The Undecided

Undecided entrepreneurs aren’t rare, in fact, they may be the most common type of first-time entrepreneur. 

New endeavors breed uncertainty, and anyone who decides to brave a whole new world doesn’t always know the ins and outs of what they’re getting into, nor do they know just what it will bring out in them. 

Being undecided at first is OK. Eventually, this will solve itself when you’re further along the process.

How can people give themselves the best shot at success with so many unknowns? 

If you’re like most people, you may have a hard time deciding how to put yourself into just one category, but we all tend to have one dominant type. 

Give it some time. It’ll resolve itself as you’re moving forward. Why is all this important? Why should you care which category you fall under? Does it all really matter? 

Well, I think yes, and this is why. 

I write and speak a lot about clarity and focus. As a business owner, those things are very important. 

You need to move forward in as straight  of a line as possible toward the goal of having a successful business. 

Just like knowing what blood type you are so that you can be matched with the perfect donor that needs it, knowing what your ‘E-Type’ is will be equally important so that you can be matched with the right people that need to support and advise you (and you will need support and advise along the way).

Mission based people run their business very differently than passion, or opportunity based businesses.  

So..which one describes you? What are you naturally good at? 

What do you find easy that others may think is hard? 

I hope you can identify with this and see yourself in one of these roles. Or maybe you’re still trying to decide? 

If you’d like to discuss this further, I offer a free coaching session that you can sign up for through my online calendar HERE. 

Let’s talk. 


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