I have heard much discussion about the difference between Entrepreneurs and Small Business Owners. From my observation there is little difference, in the first few years of operating a business. The most common characteristics for an Entrepreneur and Small Business Owner include; Vision, the ability to see where the business should be in the near future and how to lead it there; a High Energy Level, to handle all of the tasks necessary to open a business and to operate it once it’s open; a Need to Achieve, to grow constantly; Self Confidence, if you don’t believe in yourself it will be difficult to get others to; a Tolerance for Failure, not everything is going to work the first time; Creativity, not just to develop an idea but to overcome the obstacles that will appear; a Tolerance for Ambiguity, not everything will be clear and distinct, sometimes you have to read between the lines; and an Internal Locus of Control, the belief you are in control of what happens to you and your business, good or bad, it is your responsibility, you are in control.

Entrepreneurs and Small Business Owners require the same set of business skills. In addition to the Technical skills necessary in the industry of the business, they require skills in Time Management, Organization, Management, Marketing, Planning and understanding the finances of the business. Typically the Entrepreneur or Small Business Owner will learn the necessary technical skills through study and/or experience in their chosen field. The other skills can be taught and should be learned before the new business opens or gets too far along. Because they are so important to the success of any business, Port Charlotte SCORE is offering two series of workshops over the summer to help Entrepreneurs and Small Business Owners.


Beginning July 18th, Port Charlotte SCORE will be offering a six week Entrepreneurs Academy sponsored by Achieva Credit Union. The workshops, for startup and first stage (one to two years in existence) businesses will examine the feasibility of your business idea, marketing your business, managing your business, reading your business’s financial statements and securing financing for your start-up or growth project. For more information and to register, contact me at eddavis@scorevolunteer.org.

Port Charlotte SCORE will also be offering a two course series of workshops on “Quick Plans Using a Lean Canvas”. These workshops will teach the fundamentals of communicating your company’s message, targeting your most important customers and uncovering your competitive advantages. For more information and to register for these workshops visit www.portcharlotte.score.org.

After a few years in business the difference between Entrepreneurs and Small Business Owners may begin to show. Entrepreneurs become interested in selling the business and moving on to new ideas and new ventures. Small Business Owners are focused on growing their current business to provide for their future. Both approaches to a business are a necessary and welcomed part of our economy.

If you want to start your own business; Find something you love to do, Find something you are good at, Learn how to explain your idea and Determine what need your idea will satisfy. Then, do it!


Port Charlotte SCORE is a Chapter of The National SCORE Association, dedicated to the formation, growth and success of small businesses by educating and mentoring entrepreneurs. Volunteers provide confidential business advice to meet the needs of both start-up and existing entrepreneurs at no cost. Request a mentor at www.portcharlotte.score.org. Follow us on Twitter; @charlottecscore