Why Are You an Entrepreneur?

You might want to check your motivations, because they’re directly related to your success

Joe Procopio
6 min readMay 27, 2021


image by mego-studio

I don’t know if you’ve ever thought about the reasons why you want to be an entrepreneur, but you should. I can tell you from experience that knowing those reasons and acting on them are ultimately going to be the difference between your successes and failures as an entrepreneur.

Not long ago, I ran a poll in Teaching Startup asking our member entrepreneurs what success looked like for them. I told them that whenever I have these kinds of conversations with my entrepreneur peers, the answer usually falls into one of two camps — either they’ve never thought about what personal success means for them or they’re too busy focusing on the journey to think about the destination.

And yes, there are a handful of my peers who will directly reference the money — boatloads and truckloads of it, in fact.

None of those answers are untruthful and, for the record, none of those answers are wrong. Each reason is as different as each entrepreneur, as each person. So regardless of your motivations, the important thing is to be honest about those motivations and act on those motivations.

Let’s talk about why and how we do that.

The results: Money is a big deal

Because of the altruistic responses I was getting from my peers, and the fact that I maybe don’t 100% believe them, I reminded the Teaching Startup membership that the poll was indeed anonymous and they should definitely think about the money, even if they’re not thinking about the money.

And as it turns out, the money is a big reason why most of these entrepreneurs chose their path. But maybe not in the way conventional wisdom makes it out to be.

57% of the respondents said they wanted financial success. “I want to work my butt off and be rewarded for it.”

19% said they wanted financial freedom. “I don’t care what the numbers are, but I’m not killing myself to make this happen.”

14% said they wanted it all. “I’ll take the money and the book deal when I’m done please.”



Joe Procopio

I'm a multi-exit, multi-failure entrepreneur. NLG pioneer. Building TeachingStartup.com & GROWERS. Write at Inc.com and BuiltIn.com. More at joeprocopio.com