It seems that everyone not in just Silicon Valley is launching a startup these days. If not launching a startup they’re joining an accelerator or incubator. While startups are the new cool thing and accelerators and incubators are the new american idols for startups, launching a startup is no easy task.

Recently Kauffman FastTrac conducted an “Are You An Entrepreneur?” questionnaire with results from 5,000-plus individuals and posted on forbes.com. If you’re a first time entrepreneur or soon to launch a startup the data is a must read. Below is an infographic and some of the data from the Kauffman FastTrac “Are You An Entrepreneur?” questionnaire.

While most survey respondents rated themselves high on many of the 17 personal characteristics, traits and skills that bode well for taking an entrepreneurial plunge, the results also clearly indicated areas in which aspiring entrepreneurs see themselves “needing improvement.” The top five attributes to hone before starting a business, according to those surveyed, are:

  • Networking – 19 percent
  • Persuasiveness – 16.3 percent
  • Market awareness – 15.6 percent
  • Business knowledge – 13.5 percent
  • Self-discipline – 9.1 percent
  • On the other end of the scale, the traits in which founder-wannabes felt they needed little to no improvement included ethics (1.7 percent) and accountability (3.2 percent). In other words, they feel well equipped with honesty and integrity, and they take responsibility for their own performance.

    “Passion to be an entrepreneur” is the top reason for wanting to start a business for nearly half (48.5 percent) of those surveyed. Following at a distant second and third were “I want to be my own boss” (29.5 percent) and “I have a great idea/innovation” (17.4 percent). Interestingly, only 1 percent indicated their interest was driven by a lack of success in finding a job.

    So, with interest in entrepreneurship high, what did survey respondents see as their barriers to entry? Money, money, money – and figuring out how to get started. Topping the responses to a question about the “biggest obstacle to starting my own company,” 36 percent of aspiring founders cited financing, followed closely by “knowing where to begin” (34.7 percent). Much farther down the scale of concern were fear of failure (10.1 percent) and finding a partner (6.5 percent).

    via Kauffman Foundation

    What challenges do you have as an entrepreneurship

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