Module 1: Exercise 3: RESTART Entrepreneur Strengths and Weaknesses Checklist

Module 1: Exercise 3: RESTART Entrepreneur Strengths and Weaknesses Checklist 2017-06-03T09:03:09+00:00

A common concern among prospective entrepreneurs is whether they have the right personalities, characteristics or skills necessary to own and run a small business. The good news is that there’s no definitive formula for what makes a person well-suited to being an entrepreneur. Still, it is true that most successful entrepreneurs share certain characteristics.

This exercise will help you identify your strengths and weaknesses and will give you a better idea of whether you’re ready to become a business owner again.

Examine each of the skills areas listed in the chart. Ask yourself whether you possess some or all of the skills listed. Then rate your skills in each area by clicking the appropriate box, using a scale of 1-5, with 1 as low, 2 as between low and medium, 3 as medium, 4 as between medium and high, and 5 as high.

Product and Production

profitable product lines
efficient production processes
strong technical knowledge
cost effective purchasing
product performance reviews
new product development
external advisory expertise available
product performance reviews
new product development


clear routes to market
sales planning – prospecting to find new customers
not overly reliant on one market or one customer
selling and negotiation skills
customer service follow-up
gather and customer testimonials
managing your sales team
managing and motivating distribution channels
tracking competitors


regular marketing research and trend forecasting
strong and consistent brand
consistent advertising/promotion/pr
annual marketing planning
agile marketing strategies
adequate marketing resources
strong and up to date online presence


cash flow planning
billing, payables
credit control including debt collection
monthly profit and loss statements
on time tax preparation
regular profit analysis
bank relationships
good knowledge of grant supports


payroll handling
general administration

Personnel Management

hiring employees
firing employees
motivating employees
general management skills

Personal business skills

oral presentation skills
written communication skills
presentation skills
computer skills
online marketing experience
organizational skills


ability to work long and hard
ability to manage risk and stress
family support
ability to deal with failure
ability to work alone
ability to work with and manage others


After you’ve rated yourself in each area, total up the numbers. Then apply the following rating scale:

  • if your total is less than 100 points, you should reconsider whether owning a business is the right step for you
  • if your total is between 101 and 200, you’re on the verge of being ready, but you may be wise to spend some time strengthening some of your weaker areas
  • if your total is above 201, you’re ready to start a new business now