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Diving into the entrepreneur and intrapreneur world

Did you ever wonder what it really means to be an “entrepreneur”? In this article you will learn the true meaning behind the term, while also understanding the difference and similarities between “entrepreneurs” and “intrapreneurs”.
Nicolas Sack
By Nicolas Sack
/ May 2, 2023

​Nowadays, it’s common to hear the term “entrepreneur” absolutely everywhere. From news reports on those who’ve made it big to inspiring success stories starring normal people like you and me who have made the brave choice to become an “entrepreneur”. But do we actually know what being an entrepreneur really means?  

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And if we dig deeper, do we have to own a business to claim this title? Many people in business – whether owner/operator or working for someone else – would argue they live and breathe these enterprising qualities. In this article, we will dive a little deeper into what it means to be an entrepreneur - and in doing so, making a comparison between “entrepreneur” and “intrapreneur”.   

What is an entrepreneur?

Let’s start by answering this basic question. Though there might be more complex or specific definitions depending on the context, in a nutshell, we can say that an entrepreneur is a person who owns or operates a business.  

Of course, as there are different types of businesses, there are also different types of entrepreneurs. The thing that all entrepreneurs have in common is a willingness to take risks! Taking a risk in starting a business, launching a new product, in opening a new store. To turn that risk into a reward, they’ll need a sound business plan and a focused approach – starting small, then growing, if the target audience responds positively. 

What is an intrapreneur? 

Now that we’ve got the definition of an “entrepreneur” covered, let’s talk about “intrapreneurs”. We can define an intrapreneur as a person that works for an already existing business or company and is tasked with developing a project or idea to benefit the business in the future.  

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As the intrapreneur is fundamentally still an employee of an existing business, their goal is to help improve a specific aspect of their employer’s company –, from speeding up working processes, to increasing the annual revenue.    

Differences - and similarities! – between entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs 

Based on the definitions we just gave of entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs, we’ve learned that an entrepreneur builds a business from scratch, while an intrapreneur already works for an existing company. This shows us the key difference: an entrepreneur deals with most of the risks (and the benefits that might come with them!), while an intrapreneur that works for an employer does not.

Another important difference to highlight is that intrapreneurs rely on all the resources of the existing company they work for, which might relieve pressure and stress, and allows them to make bolder decisions. Entrepreneurs, on the other hand, do not have this advantage – with fewer resources, more stress, and often, personal financial risk is incurred. It’s why there is a growing conversation around safeguarding the mental health of entrepreneurs, particularly in the early stages of their journey. 

Nevertheless, despite these differences, these two profiles share lots of skills, traits and characteristics. Both usually are highly creative individuals who possess the ability to adapt to changing scenarios with ease, are resilient in dealing and bouncing back from failure, and are persistent and passionate about their work.   

Entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs closing points

As you can see, though entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs have very different starting points, they also share a lot of similarities. Indeed, many intrapreneurs end up leaving their employer to start their own journey as an entrepreneur.  

Our goal here at BTC Business is to offer the best connectivity packages, Smart Solutions, and 24/7 business-class support for those who are considering starting a new venture. That’s why we always celebrate the entrepreneurs and the intrapreneurs who are brave enough to start their own business.  ​

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