Entrepreneur vs Intrapreneur
I became an “entrepreneur” without even realising. I was passionate about the motoring industry seeing the value of their female customers and I thought that the only way to do this was to educate the market. My blog turned into a website which eventually started to make money and before I knew what was happening, I was running a business.
What Does It Mean To Be An Entrepreneur?
Being an entrepreneur was a fantastic experience, I had to develop my brand, generate sales, build up a solid reputation, create partnerships, network, manage other members of my team, budget cash flow and raise investment. Running my start-up full time for a year was basically like doing a crash course in business management.
Whilst networking, I came across many people who had worked for large corporations for many years and left them to become entrepreneurs. They had put in the time and effort to build up a solid network and either replicated a business model or tried to solve a problem they had faced in their industry.
Struggling To Find A Job When You Have Been An Entrepreneur
When I decided to go back into full time work (because my business, whilst profitable, wasn’t enough to live on) I remember having countless interviews and really struggled to figure out what role I should apply for because I had such a range of skills. I applied for many digital marketing roles and got through to every interview because I had “an interesting story” but I was turned down for the actual jobs because my skills were too broad, or people were worried I would get “bored” and start my own company again. I kept explaining that I had done the whole “running my own business thing” and really wanted to be entrepreneurial within an organisation rather than run my own company again. (Well… at least for the next 5 years)
It wasn’t until I met with Alex Dunsdon, Tom Salmon & Andrew Humphries from The Bakery that I was finally being understood. The Bakery is a place where entrepreneurialism and intrapreneurship are embraced, when I left the meeting I knew it was where I wanted to work.
I am now an intrapreneur, working for an innovative company (The Bakery- yes I got the job!) but embracing my entrepreneurial spirit. I am applying the same thinking of when I ran my own company, hopefully making a difference to the organisation I am now working for by helping entrepreneurs connect with large corporations to drive innovation.
You Don’t Have To Be An Entrepreneur To Be Entrepreneurial
You really don’t have to be an entrepreneur and start your own business to be entrepreneurial. If you have it in you then you can be an intrapreneur.
The following 5 things will help to bring out your inner intrapreneur;
. Be Committed. Come to work wanting to make a difference. You need to be passionate about what you are doing to add real value.
. Take Initiative. If you have an idea on how to improve something, voice it. Share your ideas with other people and don’t be so worried about your status or job title.
. Don’t Give Up (easily). It is okay to fail but it is really important not to give up on your idea too easily. You will be challenged and your ideas won’t always take off, it’s about getting up and trying again. Treat failure as good learning curves.
. Take Ownership. To be a true intrapreneur you need to believe in the company and it’s future as if it is your own. If you really care about making a difference you need to contribute ideas that are going to benefit the company in the long run.
Track results. Keep a dashboard of the qualitative and quantitate impact you are having on the organisation you work for, so the return you deliver to your employees is as transparent as if you were running your own business.
Does anyone else have any tips on how to be an intrapreneur?