Business Owner vs. Entrepreneur vs. CEO: Know the Roles
On our journey to make business owners successful, we have met thousands of people that own businesses. Most all of them call themselves entrepreneurs, but we don’t. To 4-Profit an entrepreneur is someone who creates something that never existed before or builds a business based on a unique twist that creates a business that is “defensible.” What we mean by defensible is that it would be very hard for someone to compete with them. With this in mind, most of those thousands of people we have met are really business owners. Now there is nothing wrong with being a business owner, but we try not to confuse entrepreneurs with business owners.
There is an even further distinction that 4-Profit looks at when categorizing a business. Many business owners and entrepreneurs get stuck at some point, which is why we wrote the book “Break Points.” The main reason they get stuck is the fact that most individuals are NOT CEOs. The discipline and wisdom required to be an excellent CEO are typically not found in the average business owner or entrepreneur.
So what makes a CEO great?
A great CEO sets strategy and vision. The senior management team can help develop strategy. Investors can approve a business plan. But the CEO ultimately sets the direction. CEOs determine and set direction for the following:
- Which markets will the company enter? Against which competitors? With what product lines?
- How will the company differentiate itself?
Bottom line: The CEO decides, sets budgets, forms partnerships, and hires a team to steer the company accordingly.
When you combine the concept of lifestyle, growth and hyper growth with the concept of business owner vs. entrepreneur vs. CEO, you can really start to categorize individuals that you meet, who own a business. You can start to see which ones have the internal fortitude to sustain growth, which ones have the skills and tools to get to the “next level” and which ones have the greatest chance of success.
Knowing Your Strengths
So what type of business owner or entrepreneur are you? Was it planned or was it an accident? We hope that the journey is one that you are passionate about, and helps you meet the needs of your life, for the choice of owning your own business can lead to the most amazing life you can imagine. We know, because we are living it!
Frank Albi, former solution provider CEO, and 4-Profit team member, has a proven track record of successfully building growth-oriented advanced technology services organizations. He heads up M&A planning, training and CEO/Executive team coaching on business strategy/realignment and profitability. For more information please visit www.4-profit.com.