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An entrepreneur is a person who has possession of a new enterprise, venture or idea and is accountable for the inherent risks and the outcome.[1][note 1] The term was originally a loanword from French and was first defined by the Irish-French economist Richard Cantillon. Entrepreneur in English is a term applied to a person who is willing to launch a new venture or enterprise and accept full responsibility for the outcome. Jean-Baptiste Say, a French economist, is believed to have coined the word "entrepreneur" in the 1800's - he defined an entrepreneur as "one who undertakes an enterprise, especially a contractor, acting as intermediatory between capital and labour".[note 2]


Leadership attributes

The entrepreneur leads the firm or organisation and also demonstrates leadership qualities by selecting managerial staff. Management skill and strong team building abilities are essential leadership attributes for successful entrepreneurs. Scholar Robert. B. Reich considers leadership, management ability, and team-building as essential qualities of an entrepreneur. This concept has its origins in the work of Richard Cantillon in his Essai sur la Nature du Commerce en (1755) and Jean-Baptiste Say (1803 or 1834)[note 3] in his Treatise on Political Economy.

Entrepreneurs emerge from the population on demand, and become leaders because they perceive opportunities available and are well-positioned to take advantage of them. An entrepreneur may perceive that they are among the few to recognize or be able to solve a problem. Joseph Schumpeter saw the entrepreneur as innovators and popularized the uses of the phrase creative destruction to describe his view of the role of entrepreneurs in changing business norms. Creative destruction encompasses changes entrepreneurial activity makes every time a new process, product or company enters the market.

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