“Entrepreneur” is a broad term that many of our clients at Hannah Grimes struggle to relate to. We find that folks prefer to self identify with works like “small business owner,” “freelancer,” “artisan,” or some other word that specifies the kind of work they do.
This is in part because definitions vary depending on who you ask. According to Forbes, “Entrepreneurs are generally seen as those taking high-yield risks that require a lot of money, thus their financing typically comes from investors.” This doesn’t apply to a lot of small business owners, especially those local to the Monadnock Region. At Hannah Grimes, we believe that anyone who owns and operates their own business is an entrepreneur.
Why are we so hesitant to identify as entrepreneurs?
We recently interviewed 10 Hannah Grimes clients and asked them what words they use to identify themselves in relation to their business. Some said “local” or “small business owner”. Others referred to their roles as product creators, using language like “coffee roaster,” “producer,” or “herbalist.”
Many of them were intimidated by the word “entrepreneur” because they felt like they weren’t “at that level.” But you don’t have to be Jeff Bezos to call yourself an entrepreneur. Every small business owner takes risks and has responsibilities. Whether that includes a brick and mortar, a crew of employees, or a wide range of investors is up to you. Don’t be afraid to take credit for the hard work that you are doing building your business.
To all of the freelancers, artisans, and small businesses owners out there, you have every right to self identify with the words that fit you best, including “entrepreneur.”
Written by Program Coordinator, Lillian Chase.