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The Mindset Shift — From Employee to Entrepreneur

In today’s world, two distinct types of individuals come to the fore:

Those who wait for things to happen and

Those who take action to make things happen.

Entrepreneurs firmly belong to the latter category.

They are individuals who are proactive and purposeful in their endeavors. Their focus lies in being leaders rather than mere followers, as they take charge of their own lives, businesses, communities, and clients. Many possess the drive and determination to turn their visions into reality, actively shaping their destinies and the world around them. However, achieving this drive and determination is not an easy task, especially for those transitioning from being employees to becoming entrepreneurs. Such a transition requires a fundamental shift in mindset, which significantly impacts decision-making, actions, and other aspects of their business. In this article, we will explore various aspects of business and compare the approaches taken by employees and entrepreneurs towards them. This analysis will help us understand why a mindset shift is essential. But before delving into that, it is crucial to comprehend how mindset functions.

  • Mindset refers to a collection of beliefs that shape our understanding of the world and ourselves, influencing our thoughts, emotions, and actions in various situations.

  • It can be seen as a specific way of thinking that is influenced by factors such as background, culture, experiences, research, learning, and even genetic makeup.

  • A dual nature characterizes mindset; it can either open doors by enabling us to see opportunities, or limit us based on our beliefs and approach within different scenarios.

  • The narratives we tell ourselves and our self-perceptions play a significant role in determining the impact of our mindset.

  • Mindset has the power to influence our reactions to situations and other behavioral tendencies.

  • It provides us with a sense of direction in life, guiding our actions and decisions.

  • Over time, a habitual mindset defines our identity and shapes the possibilities of what we can achieve in life.

Having grasped the workings of mindset, our next step involves delving into different business aspects and contrasting how employees and entrepreneurs approach them.


In a traditional workplace setting, employee motivation often revolves around incentives like promotions or salary raises, leading individuals to focus on maintaining a favorable image to please their superiors.

However, when you become an entrepreneur, the dynamics change. As there is no boss to satisfy, your motivation shifts towards following your passion, making a positive impact, achieving financial freedom, and embracing flexibility.

As an entrepreneur, your inner drive becomes paramount as the journey necessitates a steadfast faith and a dedication to personal growth and development.

Instead of seeking external validation, you find fulfillment in pursuing your vision and honing your skills, making your inner growth and authenticity pivotal to entrepreneurial success.


As an employee, your risks are confined by your employer's policies, and deviating from those boundaries could jeopardize the security of your stable job. This may lead some individuals to be risk-averse, preferring to stay within the established parameters.

However, as an entrepreneur, you will notice a transformation in your attitude towards risk over time. You’ll begin to embrace the idea of taking calculated risks, finding that challenges energize and motivate you.

Gradually, you learn how to assess potential risks more confidently and may even come to enjoy the excitement that comes with venturing beyond the conventional boundaries.


As an employee, your employer dictates the value of your time, sets your schedule, and defines your tasks.

Essentially, you trade your time for monetary compensation.

However, when you transition into an entrepreneur, this dynamic undergoes a significant shift. You start recognizing the true value of time since it is an irreplaceable resource.

As such, you become more discerning about how you allocate and schedule your time, being mindful of making the most of every moment.


As an employee, it is common to focus on and excel in a specific skill or area that aligns with your profession (e.g., nurse, professor, doctor, engineer).

Specializing in your chosen field may lead you to develop that particular expertise rather than branching out into other areas.

However, for entrepreneurs, the scenario is quite different.

While you may have expertise in a specific domain, you will discover the need to be well-versed in various aspects of business, such as marketing, accounting, sales, and administration.

Being an entrepreneur demands diverse interests and experiences. This is because, in the business world, you must possess street smarts to effectively manage both employee performance and business outcomes.

Furthermore, cultivating a wide network of contacts becomes crucial as it allows you to gain valuable knowledge and establish meaningful business connections.

The multifaceted nature of entrepreneurship necessitates a broader skill set and a well-connected professional circle to navigate challenges and seize opportunities successfully.

Problem Solving

As an employee, when encountering a problem at work, it's often natural to rely on the supervisor, boss, or someone else to resolve it. The responsibility doesn't necessarily fall solely on the employee.

Similarly, if the work environment becomes unfavorable, employees may choose to quit or search for a new job as a solution.

However, the situation is quite different for entrepreneurs.

When faced with challenges, entrepreneurs take it upon themselves to address and rectify the issues. They recognize that they cannot simply quit without jeopardizing their business, so they approach problems with determination and persistence.

The success and survival of their business depend on their ability to confront and overcome obstacles, leading entrepreneurs to be highly focused and tenacious in finding solutions.

From these comparisons, one can deduce that the shift from employee to entrepreneur represents a transformational journey that requires courage, resilience, and adaptability.

It involves breaking free from the comfort zone of employment to embrace the uncertainty of entrepreneurship. With the right mindset, individuals can unlock their full potential, turning their dreams into reality and forging a path that aligns with their passions and aspirations.

As the world of business continues to evolve, this mindset shift will remain a pivotal factor in shaping the future of entrepreneurship.

The above article is part of the Make Growth Happen Series which is tailored to help business owners take a more Holistic Approach to Business Growth.

Janice is a Certified Business Coach whose extensive knowledge and experience in various aspects of business has set her on a mission to help business leaders turn their Vision into Reality. She works with them to develop the right strategies, structure and skills needed to take their business to the next level. She is the Author of The Ten Commandments of Crisis Management. Janice also works with Christian business owners who desire to run their business based on Biblical Principles.

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