StartUp Entrepreneurs: You Can Be An Introvert

Not everyone is born a natural leader or salesperson, but that shouldn't discourage aspiring entrepreneurs from pursuing their dreams of building a successful startup.

Every now and then I’d meet aspiring entrepreneurs who express concern over their ability to lead a team and sell a vision. The truth is, not every founder is born with natural leadership qualities. While those skills may certainly help you build and grow your company, they are not necessarily a requirement for success.

As noted author and entrepreneur Guy Kawasaki once said, “Great companies start because the founders want to change the world, not make a fast buck.” In other words, if you have a great solution to a problem that people care about, they will be attracted to your vision and join your army. You don’t necessarily need to be a charismatic leader to inspire others to believe in your idea.

Of course, this doesn’t mean that leadership skills aren’t important. You will still need to build and manage a team, and you will need to be able to sell your product or service to customers and investors. But these skills can be developed over time, and you can always hire people to help fill in the gaps.

One example of a successful introverted entrepreneur is Susan Cain, author of “Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking.” Cain’s book argues that introverts have unique strengths that are often overlooked in our extroverted culture. She herself is a self-proclaimed introvert and has given multiple TED talks on the topic.

So if you’re an introvert who has a great idea for a startup, don’t let your lack of natural leadership skills hold you back. Focus on developing your vision and finding others who share your passion. With hard work and persistence, you can build a successful company that changes the world. Good luck!

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