It’s an age-old question whether entrepreneurs are born or made, but evidence suggests that most successful business owners are a hybrid of the two. Jamal Edwards, who founded the online youth broadcasting company SB.TV, believes 5 percent of entrepreneurs have innate abilities while 95 percent acquire the necessary skills, according to Forbes. Whatever the case, most research indicates that the following traits, abilities or even steps usually dictate entrepreneurial success.

Heritage or Personality

A person’s genes can increase his or her probability of starting a business, according to Entrepreneur. If a young man’s father, for example, runs a business, he may be more inclined to follow in his dad’s footsteps. He may also inherit certain traits that can enhance his success, such as having an outgoing personality or being a risk taker.

Core Competencies

Whether they acquire them over time or just have innate abilities, most successful entrepreneurs possess certain skills. For one thing, they must be able to communicate well with others to get things done. They must also be organized, know how to manage their time and have keen problem-solving skills. However, despite these skills, a successful business owner must also love what he does as he’s going to spend many hours at work.


Aspiring entrepreneurs don’t have to learn the hard skills with a formal education to be successful. Certain soft skills, including managing cash flow, understanding intellectual property and becoming proficient at market segmentation are also important, according to In The Black. And these types of skills can be taught. Many people learn these skills over time in various jobs. They can also work in a specific field a while and gain the necessary expertise to run a company.

Contingent on Type of Business

Unless someone is starting a tech company or taking a chance on a risky concept, he doesn’t need to be an expert to start a business. There are many lower-level investment businesses aspiring entrepreneurs can start, such as those available in direct sales. Someone can also become a consultant in their prospective field. Moreover, others may invest in franchises where the franchise companies provide comprehensive training and support.


So, to answer the question of whether an entrepreneur is born a made, it’s a combination of both. But other factors, including the type of business, skills, and knowledge play a large part.