Mindset vs. Skillset: Which One Is More Important as a Small Business Owner

Being an entrepreneur can be extremely fulfilling. A small business owner, however, has his work cut out for him. It’s easy to become optimistic when we hear of start-ups brilliantly pop-ping up and taking the world by storm. One thing that we don’t hear about in the news is the number of start-ups that don’t make it.

Skillset vs. Mindset
There has been an ongoing debate between small business owners regarding the factors behind the success of a small business. When a small business starts out, its major resource is its owner and it is the owner that sets the direction for success or failure. In order to understand just what makes a small business tick, it is important to know what the entrepreneur can do for it. The debate between mindset and skill set rages on in the same vein as book smart and street-smart. I fact, the two concepts may be rather similar to one another.

What is a skillset?
Since the day we are born we are thrown into a series of situations that are going to help us develop skills. These skills will ultimately lead to one goal – success in the money making sphere. One must consider why the acquisition of skills is given so much importance in the world that we dedicate our entire lives to accumulating them from attending school, to high school, university and then trainings. We are constantly making efforts to collect skills that will give us that extra edge and the strong line in the CV. Skills can be defined as social, technical, and digital tools used by professionals to increase effectiveness in the workforce. As the world is constantly evolving and newer technologies emerge, the required skill sets to remain on top of the game are also constantly changing.

What is a “Mindset”?
This concept is very different from that of skill set. Unlike skills, a mindset cannot really be acquired while sitting in a classroom. Perhaps this is why we never really see any schools dedicated to improving the mindset of a person. Mindset refers to the lens through which we look at the world. The mindset refers to world view of an individual – it refers to the manner in which they perceive life and the attitude that they have towards it.

Mindset, Skillset and the Small Business Owner
What characteristics define a small business owner? When it comes to running a business, a small business owner should first and foremost know how to lead he business and its employees towards success. The logical answer to most questions is if you don’t know how to do something then you simply learn it. This difference is much more pronounced when it comes to sales. If you don’t have the skills to negotiate naturally can you really take a class to learn how?

While it is rather clear that a mindset is much more essential to a small business owner as compared to a skill set, it does not mean that the mindset is the stand alone solution to the problems of the small business owner.
Implementing a clear balance between the two is what leads businesses to success.

Imagine your skill sets as a tool box. Each skill you’ve acquired can be used in a particular situation the mindset however is the understanding of which tool can be best implemented in a situation. In fact, the mindset is something that can help you even if you don’t have the required tool in hand. The mindset is what helps you reach your goal by working with what you have.

Why Mindset Is so Important?
The fact that mindset is given so much importance in the real often comes as a shock to novice entrepreneurs. This is because they’ve been predisposed to giving importance to skill development their entire lives only to be told that it isn’t enough. You can be working doggedly and relentlessly but if you don’t have the belief and conviction to succeed, nothing’s going to happen. At this point you need to put on your leadership goggles and understand what is wrong with your perception.

The best entrepreneur and leader is one who thinks on a global scale and is a strategist. When you’re the spearhead of an organization, it’s your attitude towards it that determines the direction it will go in. If you perceive it in a negative manner believing that certain tasks can’t be done, then they won’t be.

In fact 80% of business problems are personal in disguise. Simply changing your attitude towards the business can help the business move forward. Think of it as the ripple effect. The leader and small business owner should be the one who cares most about the success of the business. When you fail to show a positive attitude towards it, this feeling will slowly trickle down the hierarchy and instill itself into every one’s mind.

Negative thoughts don’t only poison your own mind but also of those who are working with you. Negativity is highly contagious and letting it eat away at you business is something that you simply cannot afford.

Find the Perfect Balance between the Two
For people who love to live on extremes it is always a choice between skill set and mindset. What they don’t realize is that one cannot exist without the other. A small business where only one is implemented will starve because it isn’t receiving a healthy diet of its two staple foods.

Skillsets are required on entry. Once you have the ultimate resume in your hands, it’s time to put your mindset into action and implement those skills that you worked so hard to acquire.

Your mindset is something that you cannot acquire overnight. Changing your vision takes time and experience. In fact, it is quite often when we find ourselves facing a wall that we learn to turn around and change direction.

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