When I hear the word Grit I immediately think of someone like John Wayne or someone in an action movie that fights all of the odds to become the victor. In many ways, Grit is not always as glorious as the sports star that overcame injury to win a championship. Grit is not always right in your face like the solider pushing through a battle to save lives. Sometimes grit is subtle, sometimes grit goes unnoticed by people because they’re just not looking hard enough. Regardless of how grit is shown, it is a crucial trait for someone looking to be a successful entrepreneur. In fact it’s so important that I decided it had to be the first entry in this series: The Entrepreneurship Dictionary.
Merriam-Webster defines Grit as such:
firmness of mind or spirit : unyielding courage in the face of hardship or danger
Does this seem like a trait you have? Don’t let the text fool you, hardship doesn’t have to be something like homelessness or losing a job. A hardship could be missing an important deal, losing a major client, losing a good friend, or even the death of a loved one. For many these types of events can be crippling or life altering.
When you’re trying to become an Entrepreneur you’re going to experience a lot of ups and downs, but believe me when I say this: How you handle the downs define your character more than anything else in this world can. If you can leave a bad situation with a continued desire to move on and a willingness to learn from your mistakes than you, my friend, are showing some major grit.
Remember that when things are down you have to dig in deep to get them back up again. By handling these bad times you’re growing as a person and you’ll be much more capable of handling them well in the future also. Famous social media expert Gary Vaynerchuck says that most entrepreneurs born into money will fail because they’re “soft”. I completely agree with this opinion. By having to scratch and claw your way to the top you’ll be able to stay more grounded and you’ll be more likely to take your hits and continue onward.
So do you have grit? When you lose big do you keep on trucking or just throw in the towel? If you’re someone that loves to fight the odds and buck the trends then you just might have grit. Since no startup or business venture goes without a hitch, you’re going to be taking shots from many different angles. They could be from competition, regulation, or even your own staff; but I can promise you they’ll be there.
It’s for the reasons listed above that Grit is so important for an Entrepreneur and is why it must be in every Entrepreneurship Dictionary. So stay tough, don’t let others sway your commitment to your goals, and most importantly never stop fighting for your beliefs.
Work Hard. Believe. Accomplish.
What trait or word do you feel is absolutely necessary for the Entrepreneur? Let me know in the comments below and maybe I’ll feature your word in some upcoming Entrepreneurship Dictionary posts. Thanks for reading!