Job Council News

The Definition of an Entrepreneur

The definition of an entrepreneur was coined by John Stuart Mill in his book “On the Origin of the American Economy.” In his work, he differentiated between the role of an entrepreneur and other owners of business. The former takes financial risks, and the latter does not actively participate in the day-to-day operations of the business. In contrast, the former works to build the market for products and services. They may not be the most appealing people to work for, but their unique skills and passions are vital to the success of the business.


The word “entrepreneur” is derived from a thirteenth-century French verb that means “to undertake”. In the academic realm, the term first appeared in the early 1800s. It was attributed to Richard Cantillon, who recognized that an entrepreneurship characteristic is the willingness to take personal risk. Then, in the late 17th century, the word was popularized by Jean-Baptiste Say, Ludwig von Mises, and Friedrich von Hayek. Both economists emphasized the role of the entrepreneur in creating value and moving resources.

An entrepreneur is a person who pursues a business opportunity, usually using limited resources. An entrepreneur identifies a need for a new product, process, or service, and develops the business around this need, taking on the risk. It is not uncommon for an aspiring entrant to be the only employee in a business; in fact, many successful ego-driven individuals started their businesses by bringing in other employees, family members, and friends.

A common mistake made by entrepreneurs is that they don’t have enough funds to start a business. In reality, they are likely to be self-employed. However, if they are passionate about what they do, an entrepreneur will be able to make a profit from their endeavors. In addition to self-employment, they may also want to consider partnering with another company or seeking investment from outside sources. But even if they don’t have the money to start a business, they will still have to make a profit from it.

An entrepreneur is often an unemployed individual. They have an idea, research it, and then create a business to fill that need. Despite being an entrepreneur, an entrant may work for a corporation to help them build their brand and to increase their income. In fact, many renowned household-name companies today started as a small company. The definition of an ‘entrepreneur’ varies from one industry to another.

The word ‘entrepreneur’ comes from a thirteenth-century French verb. It refers to an individual who undertakes a business venture. The first academic usage of the word was in 1730 by Richard Cantillon, who defined an ‘entrepreneur’ as a person willing to take personal financial risk. In the early 1800s, the term was popularized by John Stuart Mill and Jean-Baptiste Say, who stressed the role of an ‘entrepreneur in the creation of value’ and the movement of resources.