Today, most people only pay attention to the final outcome of successful entrepreneurs, neglecting the hurdles they undergo to achieve success.  Many assume these feats were obtained by luck, and a good number just shrug and say “I can never be like them”.

But the reality is, people who achieve success have sacrificed a lot to attain those heights. In fact, they’ve been often faced with seemingly genuine reasons to quit. However, regardless of the unending adversities they still persevere.

Let’s examine the habits that moulds them overtime into what they are now.

Rising early

Successful entrepreneurs rise early
Successful entrepreneurs rise early

Rising early allows successful entrepreneurs get a head start every day, which enables them to knock out daily tasks before the rest of the world roll out of bed.

In the words of ‘Shark Tank’ investor Kevin O’Leary who wakes up at 5:45 a.m. to checks the Asian and European bond markets, “Good investors don’t stay in bed in North America with strings untied overseas, because if something happens in London or Tokyo while they’re sleeping, everything can change,” the investor writes in a post on Business Insider.

The Business Insider also reveals that Ellevest, CEO and Co-founder Sallie Krawcheck wakes up at 4 a.m. for creative thinking time. The former Citigroup CFO writes in a LinkedIn post that she’s never more productive than she is at 4 a.m. “I brew a cup of coffee, I keep the lights pretty low, I sometimes light a fire in the fireplace, and I let my daughter’s cat sleep next to my computer,” she writes.

According to her, that’s when her mind is clearest since she’s not yet caught up in the day’s internal conversations. Perhaps not unrelated, it’s also when she finds she’s the most creative. “It is at this time of day that I often have a rush of ideas (some of them actually good).”

Having “extra” hours with fewer distractions and fresh energy gives the room to do some creative thinking, complete vital projects, and spend quality time with family. It is noteworthy to state here that rising early doesn’t translate to the evasion of sleep.


hard work

Although successful entrepreneurs are thought to be “blessed with talent or lucky most times”, the truth is, many work harder than the average person can even imagine. They put in the effort and hours to make their ideas successful. In the bid to make each minute count successful entrepreneurs habitually focus all energy and resources on projects having the highest return on their time investment , which is usually the most difficult but productive work to do.

Described as “The Bionic Manager” by a 2005 Fortune article, with highlights of his incredible work ethic, Jeffrey Immelt, the General Electric (GE) CEO worked 100 hour weeks for 24 years. Immelt strictly divides that time, devoting a specific portion of each day to deal with every part of his business. All of that comes after a 5:30 a.m workout where he’s already reading the papers and watching CNBC.

Building Mentorship Relationship

No doubts a tree can not make a forest just as no man is an island of knowledge. Building mentorship relationship is one habit that is very exceptional and essential for the success of every entrepreneur. An old saying reveals that consultation with those who have gone before in your path would help to have them share their experiences with you such that you would avoid their mistakes and gain tremendous speed to attain your relative dreams and goals in that pathway.

Mentors come in all different forms. New York Times bestselling author, Janet Mock, shared her advice on the choice of a mentor

One key bit of advice I would give is not necessarily to look for someone that you can build a relationship with, but look for someone who you can ask a very simple question, who can reply to your email very easily to you. What is it that you need? Don’t look so much on, let’s sit down and have coffee or let’s have a cocktail, but what is the one thing that you need this particular person you’re seeking mentorship from to actually guide you through? Because I think what has helped me a lot is when I have a certain question, and I kind of point it to the right person who I know can actually answer it. It takes the pressure off the person who is asking.


Networking is paramount

Networking in business is an essential habit cultivated by successful entrepreneurs in the entrepreneurial ecosystem as it provides opportunities to present their brands the way they want other people to see. It is extremely important for entrepreneurs to build strong relationships with other entrepreneurs from different fields of interest, age groups, religion, and nationality.

In the words of Rishi Chowdhury

“After attending my third networking event of the week, I realised that networking is one of the most valuable uses of my time in terms of return—and not just in monetary terms.

Networking is free, most of the time. It’s full of like-minded individuals, and if you go to the right events, it’s full of people you can work with or learn from in some way. Besides meeting with potential investors, business events are usually organised to create platforms where highly-skilled and talented entrepreneurs meet to share in the creation, development, and communication of ideas. Such events attract people with a different wealth of experience in the business world and a level ground is established for connection, advice, inspiration, exceptional business opportunities with potential investors or business partners.

Constant Self-Review

self review

Successful entrepreneurs subject their business strategies, techniques, approaches, and style to their own critical evaluation at all times. They go back to the drawing board improve on what they do every day, hence they are consistently making deliberate, required and informed decisions in their business dynamism.

In order to get the most out of their business, successful entrepreneurs have a clear set of goals as well as a set of steps to achieve those goals. They are busy people; always looking for ways to improve their business and deliver a greater output and better performance to their customers. This is especially true in highly competitive industries where the slightest edge over your competition means success. With an emphasis on business operations, it is not uncommon for business owners to overlook the importance of self-evaluations. Just as an employer can see strengths, weaknesses, and areas in need of improvement when evaluating their employees, business owners can learn more about their performance after a self-assessment.

Here is a checklist for entrepreneurs that would help to make your days as healthy and as effective as possible. Although much of it applies to everyone, especially those who work at a desk, if you are an entrepreneur and work intensely, you likely need signs, signals, alarms and life forces to interrupt your workflow in order to take care of yourself.


Successful entrepreneurs read

We are in the Information Age where most successful entrepreneurs are great readers. Warren Buffett spends the majority of his time at work reading, Bill Gates strives to read a book a week. Mark Zuckerberg even has his own online book club.  Although, it can be challenging to figure out what to read regardless of their limited time and nearly unlimited choices, these entrepreneurs often fall back on the business books that everyone else seems to be talking about.

According to Andrew Merle when Warren Buffett was once asked about the key to success, he pointed to a stack of nearby books and said, “Read 500 pages like this every day. That’s how knowledge works. It builds up, like compound interest. All of you can do it, but I guarantee not many of you will do it.”

Buffett takes this habit to the extreme: he read between 600 and 1000 pages per day when he was beginning his investing career and still devotes about 80 percent of each day to reading.

And he’s not alone. There are other top business leaders and entrepreneurs who make reading a major part of their daily lifestyle.

 Consistent Learning

The business world is a classroom where you never graduate from. It is followed by phases of learning after learning. The market is filled with the unending number of opportunities appearing as problems facing people. Only a commitment to continuous and selfless learning would help you stay on top of your game.

Successful entrepreneurs do these — and more — consistently until their doggedness pays off. Little wonder they stand out from the crowd, and many lips tell of their success. One thing they have is common is consistency — a virtue, many aspiring same positions lack. 

Should those aspiring same achievements embrace these habits, then the realisation that success is achievable to those who work for it will dawn.

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