are a number of risk factors. Any mistakes or missteps will not go unnoticed, warns Hall. Depending on the company, failure could result in demotion or the loss of your job–and a tarnished reputation. There are also no guarantees. An employee is at the whim of an organization, says Pinchot. “Once a person comes up with an idea and gets the business up and running, the company may take it away and give it to [another employee]–someone they know better and trust,” he explains. One way to secure your place as well as your compensation package is negotiate everything up front, he advises. That’s what Gooden and Thomas did. Taylor’s expertise as well as his relationships within the company helped to solidify his position once the idea was approved. “I was working for the CEO at the time and I had a blend of the skills they needed to go do this,” says Taylor. “We needed someone who could move left to right across the company. Because of my time working for Steve directly, I learned how to navigate all aspects of the company. Because I had spent a lot of my time at the company in the field, both internationally and in the U.S., with large customers and small customers … and we needed to understand customer drivers around this, I had customer empathy. I knew how to talk to our executives and to our customers.”
Perseverance, flexibility, a solid work ethic, and heart were factors that made Gooden, Thomas, and Taylor successful in their endeavors. Building a business division from the ground up is hard work and many people are not cut out–mentally or emotionally–for the level of devotion required, says Watson. “It is a test of your mettle on whether you’re truly committed.”
Intrapreneurs are still employees of a company, but enjoy greater freedom to run a particular aspect of the company such as a new product line or subsidiary.
Intrapreneurs are chosen based mostly on corporate standards and not entrepreneurial success.
Intrapreneurs have some security in that the company will continue to compensate them even through challenging times.
Intrapreneurs are usually selected by a corporation and don’t have to worry about building the infrastructure (e.g. tech support, human resources, or accounts payable/receivables) to support their business.
Entrepreneurs are self-employed.
In crisis, entrepreneurs have nothing to rely on other than what they possess.
Entrepreneurs set their own standards for embarking on an idea.
Entrepreneurs build every aspect of the business and its support systems.
–Additional reporting by Glenn Townes & Tykisha Lundy