Jul 092017

How To Be Successful As A Defiant Entrepreneur

Maybe I should have titled this: How to be successful if you’re not a defiant entrepreneur!

Really. In my book and my experience, if you’re not defiant as an entrepreneur, your odds of being successful get much worse.

Think about it. What does it mean to be defiant? Here’s the dictionary definition:

Full of or showing a disposition to challenge, resist, or fight:  full of or showing defiance: boldimpudent 

From where I sit, you could almost substitute the word defiant for entrepreneur, and the definition would be the same! In fact, I guess the term defiant entrepreneur is kind of redundant.

Take a moment and run through a list in your mind of all the successful entrepreneurs that you know. How many of them are not “defiant”? I did this exercise a moment ago and for me, the answer was: “None”. Every single one of them is defiant. In fact, they’re some of the most defiant people I know!

Why is defiance important to being successful as an entrepreneur?

Well, here are some of the things you need to defy as an entrepreneur:

  • the odds of failure
  • authority
  • the status quo
  • naysayers
  • entrenched competition
  • “common wisdom”
  • inertia
  • your comfort zone
  • stereotypes
  • resistance to change
  • laziness
  • ignorance
  • jealousy

This list could go on and on!

As an entrepreneur, you are essentially in the business of being defiant!

Why is it important to your success in business that you are (or become) and you remain a defiant entrepreneur?

The answer is simple: the forces colluding against your success as an entrepreneur are numerous, as evidenced by the (incomplete) list above. If you give in and become anything less than defiant, your business is likely destined to fail.

In other words, the minute you acquiesce and give in to the forces conspiring against your success as an entrepreneur, you’re done. You might as well clean out your locker, go home, and find something else to do.

So, the next time you’re accused of being too intense, or of being too edgy – in other words, of being defiant – thank whomever it is who says it to you.

Don’t waste a lot of time explaining it to them, as you have defiant entrepreneur things to do, but let them know that as an entrepreneur, as someone who is trying to change your life and the world for the better, it is your job to be defiant!

You don’t need to apologize for it. You are simply doing your job to the best of your ability. It may be difficult for non-entrepreneurs to understand, but that is not your problem.

On a side note, I recently wrote an article about being successful as an introverted entrepreneur. I want to point out that I don’t think to be introverted and being defiant are mutually exclusive.

Some of the most defiant entrepreneurs I know are introverts – they just go about expressing their defiance differently than the extroverts in the crowd!

I look forward to your thoughts and questions.


Paul Morin