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While doing research for my wife, my daughter found the term wantrepreneur. This word made me think about the many questions I received from clients over my 32 years in the financial services industry. "I am about to retire, must I buy a franchise with my lump sum?”

There is in essence nothing wrong with the question. The counter question that I would normally ask is, why do you want to do that? The answer on this question will determine the outcome and success or failure of their venture.

I truly believe that once someone has made up his or her mind to do something, everything will start to take shape to make it possible. It is as though the whole universe will work together to make it possible.

I found that the word wantrepreneur have been around since 2011. There are some debate on who actually first coined the word. Some writers ascribe the word to Noah Kagan the founder AppSumo. Others say that it was Neville Medhora and Noah Kagan.

There is a definition for wantrepreneur:

·         Someone who “is going” start a business.

·         Someone who “will find the right idea some day”.

·         Someone who wants to “act” like an entrepreneur.

·         Someone who “thinks about starting a business” all the time.

Kylie Ora Lobell have written an article about the 5 major differences between an entrepreneur and a wantrepreneur. She describes wantrepreneurs as individuals who wants to rise to the top, but they are not willing to sacrifice anything, to make this dream come true.

To become a successful entrepreneur you need an unrelenting devotion to fulfil the goals you have set yourselves. You must have the ability to get past your fears. Self-doubt and feeling like an imposter is your biggest battle to make a reality of your dream to have your own business.

Lobell listed the five things that will guide the wantrepreneur to a justifiable calling and an entrepreneurial success. If you can monitor the five major differences between wantrepreneurs and entrepreneurs, you can implement the necessary changes and achieve success.

1.      “Entrepreneurs are prepared and willing to give up their personal lives at first, where wantrepreneurs are not. “
You need to choose between having fun or study and reskill yourself and work on your business. Most entrepreneurs put in at least 60 plus hours a week at the beginning of their business life cycle. In the long run this should be merely a short term sacrifice that needs to be made. However, it is important that you plan your time with your family and friends.

2.      “Entrepreneurs create the environment they need to succeed. Wantrepreneurs make excuses.”

Entrepreneurs do not make excuses, they just start making things happen the best way they can. They keep moving and do not complain. You cannot take responsibility at the same time as complaining. Your brain doesn’t think of creative solutions at all whilst you are busy complaining.

3.      “Entrepreneurs take themselves seriously.”

They are brutally honest about their capabilities, and find people that are stronger in the areas where they personally need development. Wantrepreneurs have these ideas that they can run their business in their pyjamas all day or do everything perfectly by themselves.

4.      “Entrepreneurs care about their workspace.”

You need a dedicated space where you can train your body and mind. This is a time to get down to business and not trip over children’s toys and dirty laundry, even if this workspace is in a coffee shop. Abstain from lying in bed and working in your pyjamas. Entrepreneurs work hard for their business while wantrepreneurs work hard for their outer image only.

5.      “Entrepreneurs take action.”

They do not let failures stop them. No risk, no reward. Just think about investment returns. The higher the potential return, the higher the amount of risk that you must be willing to take. This means that you could also experience some negative returns.

This is also true of your business. Sometimes life happens, and unforeseen events can wipe out a large percentage of your business income and hurt your cash flow. Why start a business if there is no reward? Entrepreneurs want to be the best at what they do; wantrepreneurs just want to be rich.


One way of ensuring that you stay focussed is to time yourself and pace yourself during your workday. Set yourself a timer, say every 25 minutes, and take a 5-minute break. Every two hours take a fifteen-minute break. This way you won’t need an extended lunchtime.

Guy Kawasaki, founder of AllTop says, “Ideas are easy. Implementation is hard.”
Steve Jobs writes, “I am convinced that about half of what separates the successful entrepreneur form the non-successful ones is pure perseverance.”
“Chase your vision, not the money; the money will end up following you.” – Tony Hsieh, CEO of Zappos.

Are you willing to work to get what you need or are you waiting for it to be given unto you?


Can you adapt to change quickly or do you call another meeting to discuss it first?


My last question to you is: Are you driven by your passion for what you believe in or are you driven by someone else’s passion?


Wantrepreneurs would study a given career, just to make money. However, it is only the South African Reserve Bank (SARB) who is legally allowed to make money. The rest of us have to work to earn money.


If you want to build a new career, it is never too late. What is it that you always wanted to do? Start now and work on your dream in order to make the change to where your passion is, in time to come.


Want to join us for our next workshop to guide you through the process to change fro a wantrepreneur to entrepreneur go here!

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