Intrapreneurs – Wired to Lead and Succeed

In our last blog post we talked about how some individuals are just hardwired to be Intrapreneurs.  But…it isn’t as simple as that. There is usually something in their past, some part of their work experience or even their education that enables them to think and act differently.

One Intrapreneur started her career working for two of the most entrepreneurial companies at the time. Both companies left an entrepreneurial imprint that stayed with her throughout her career.  Being entrepreneurial was the only way she knew how to work.  It was the foundation for her success.

Another Intrapreneur went to an innovative and progressive school that encouraged students to explore new things.  There was no formal curriculum, the school allowed students to gravitate toward things that interested them.  Working on new and creative projects is what motivated this Intrapreneur and made her an effective leader.

A majority of Intrapreneurs develop their entrepreneurial skills by raising their hands to work on the most challenging problems and opportunities.  No opportunity is too big to tackle, no problem too difficult to solve.  Intrapreneurs use these types of experiences to learn and develop new capabilities.  As they grow their organizations grow with them.

Most individuals don’t think of themselves in terms of being an Intrapreneur.  It is often a process of self discovery.  It is through their actions and the reactions of those around them that provide the clues.

In his article, Why I Like People with Unconventional Resumes, Claudio Fernandez, an executive search consultant said, “I look for people who have shown a penchant for personal disruption. ….Disruptive moves can tell you a lot about potential because it shows a candidates curiosity, insight, inspiration and determination, which in turn indicate a search for learning and challenge.”

So how do you know if you are wired to be an Intrapreneur?  Ask yourself:

___ Are there times when you don’t feel like you fit in your organization?

___ Do people often look at you as if you were talking a foreign language?

___ Are your ideas dismissed because they are different?

___ Do you see opportunity when others only see problems?

___ Are you willing to question and challenge traditional practices?

___ Is what you are saying threatening to those around you?

___ Do your peers think you have a hidden agenda?

___ Does the organization nod their head then look the other way?

___ Do you ever feel like you’re wasting your time speaking up?

___ Is what you do and why you do it a mystery to your peers?

___ Does how you do something seem counter intuitive?

A lot of individuals think they are entrepreneurs but in reality very few are.  If you answered yes to most of these questions you may just be an Intrapreneur.

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