We’ve all seen it - hundreds and maybe thousands of ordinary people out there masking their true identities under the veil of entrepreneurship. The notion of serving the world, selling a 1 dollar product to 1 million people and retiring on a yacht is “life goals” for almost any ambitious millennial nowadays.
To make matters worst, a flock of delusional artists hopped on to the entrepreneurial landscape in a movement intended on proving that artists too can be entrepreneurs, or "artrepreneurs".
As a result, millions of hopefuls from both sides of the spectrum have taken an unjustified stand against employment and order, causing a trend of self-destructive entitlement while throwing the word 'entrepreneurship' around like confetti.
According to Inc.com, in 2015, 27 million entrepreneurs existed in the U.S. alone. According to Quora.com and various government websites, 400 million entrepreneurs existed around the world in 2016. Yet quite evidently, we do not see 400 million problems being solved across the globe. Today, it is no wonder that less than 5% of entrepreneurs actually succeed as entrepreneurs.
I'm sure that you can count a few people you know who fall under this category. To put numbers into perspective, if I had a bitcoin for every thousand delusional entrepreneurs out there, I would possess every bitcoin to ever exist - including Satoshi Nakamoto's bitcoin - and there would STILL be delusional entrepreneurs left running around in circles.
So what exactly does it mean to be a creative entrepreneur, and how can we be among the top 5% who find success? Let's start by covering some basics.
Origins Of "Entrepreneurship"
The word "entrepreneur" has been around since the 1850’s (as someone willing and able to convert a new idea into a successful innovation). "Entrepreneurship" was coined in 1920 by economist Jean-Baptiste Say.
❝An entrepreneur is an individual who, rather than working as an employee, runs a small business and assumes all the risks and rewards of a given business venture, idea, or good or service offered for sale.❞
Origins Of "Artrepreneurship"
The word "artrepreneur" has been around for centuries. Perhaps a more prominent reference of the word was by Jen Harvie, Professor of Contemporary Theatre and Performance, who published the word "artrepreneur" in a chapter title in her book “Fair Play”.
Two years later in April of 2015, Melissa Crum who holds a PhD, defined an artrepreneur as:
❝a resourceful person who merges his or her artistic skills and business expertise to establish a sustainable career.❞
About four months later on the blog Millenial Type, Declan Wilson, a creative entrepreneur who blogs mainly on Medium.com, defined an artrepreneur as:
❝anyone with a desire to better others through their art but still have the business savvy to make it a sustainable venture.❞
Now that we've covered the origins of entrepreneurship, let's go ahead and check through the list of my 16 commandments for success as an artrepreneur.
The 16 Commandments Of Artrepreneurship
The Artrepreneur Must:
- Have a business interest in at least one field of art; from drawing, to music, to cooking, to sports, etc.
- Actively volunteer to pursue educating oneself on the principles of business.
- Be able to adapt and live on a tremendously low income during darker days.
- Have an interest for human behaviour and a fascination by the psychology of why people buy.
- Work consistently on one's networking skills in order to foster a wider community.
- Be willing to take on multiple roles in order to build a strong foundation for one's brand or business.
- Be willing to work with multiple persons in order to capitalize on strengths and expand on weaknesses.
- Foster the ability to focus on one thing at a time keeping in mind that multi-tasking doesn't produce effective results.
- Set milestones and goals each month for personal and business improvement.
- Be able to translate inspiration into action - inspired ideas don't get results if not executed against.
- Have a burning desire to create and share one's creations for a living.
- Have a burning desire to help and give for a living.
- Develop constantly one's skills in sales, understanding that selling is about more than just products and services.
- Be comfortable with being uncomfortable, and be okay with taking calculated risks.
- Be fascinated by the beauty of things related to business, aesthetically and emotionally.
- Be able to listen carefully and accept feedback/criticism from the market and mentors.
And there you have it folks! May the Gods of Artrepreneurship bestow upon us tremendous success and sculpt us into the exceptional leaders and creative role models we strive to be. May we find joy and achievement in the gap where business and artistry intersect.
Which of the commandments do you feel you're a master at? Are there any you feel you should improve? Have I missed any important commandments that aspiring artrepreneurs can benefit from?
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