Entrepreneur vs Intrapreneur

What differences exist between an entrepreneur vs intrapreneur? Learn more about how both individuals are equally important for new and established businesses.
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entrepreneur vs intrapreneur

What is an intrapreneur?

This whole topic of entrepreneur vs intrapreneur has made many people grabbing each other’s hair lately thinking about which is the profile that suits them, or the best option to exploit their creativity.

In this article we will talk a little about what an intrapreneur really is, we will tell you why they are in such demand, and we will point out the most relevant differences between an entrepreneur and an intrapreneur.

Within what is in its greatest popularity within companies, we find terms such as intraentrepreneur, as these have much intention to benefit more and more of these characters.

The definition of intrapreneur speaks of an employee of a company, or business, that brings innovation within and that keep a relationship where any of the above mentioned benefits each other that have become so important that increasingly make them more sought after. 

It should be taken into account that within what would be the work area of the intraentrepreneur, he is allowed to develop their qualities to the maximum, since what the organization is really interested, is in the relationship that exists between the two to use their creativity and their ideas to achieve their own goals. 

That is why the intrapreneur must not only be seen as a person capable of being part of the change of a company, but also become the one who promotes it without necessarily being the leader of a process, or of the high command.

Characteristics of the intrapreneur

Among the characteristics of the intrapreneur we can find mainly the desire to excel, and have a vision of the future.

Besides, they also need a lot of initiative and leadership in order to lead the change along the path they have devised. 

On the other hand, it is recommended that they are flexible and persevering people, since many of their ideas are not realized at the first time or, on the way, they must adjust to certain scenarios.

This also leads us to point them out as people with a great power to make and execute their plans. 

Finally, from the intrapreneur’s profile we can also highlight the fact that they have to be people responsible for their actions and committed to change.

They must be able to make decisions that support the initiative and also have a good ability to resolve any inconvenience that may arise.

This is seen as a professional who is destined to carry out a new line of business, or whose task is to innovate within a company and that is where their salary comes from, so they are given a certain level of responsibility to carry out their projects. 

The intrapreneur must be psychologically prepared to be very involved with the company that hires him/her, where he/she is always asked to be passionate and motivated about the ideas he/she may come up with so that they do not simply come out of the need to earn a salary. 

The goal of an intra-entrepreneur is to be concerned about keeping innovating, to come up with ideas and projects that are in line with their work methodology and the capabilities they have, so that the best possible results can be obtained from both sides of the coin.

Why do companies need intrapreneurs?

Let’s open this section thinking that all those powerful innovations that the largest companies have ever had have not arisen spontaneously, or are products of chance.

They come from a methodical work, with clear goals and objectives, which is done with the intention of promoting new ideas and scaling it to innovative projects.

It is then under the need that this context shows us that we can point out the importance of intrapreneurship, especially in those companies that intend to develop new products or services on a constant basis.

That is to say, they need them to emerge from someone’s mind. 

From the point of view of the company, it can be said that the great advantage is to keep this type of talent within the facilities, which are an important human capital due to their ability to provide solutions and improvements, without having to look for more personnel from outside. 

But for this reason it is important to consider the fact that these are people who are increasingly hungry to create new things, so if you have a professional of this type who feels that his proposals have no place, he will most likely leave the team.

An intrapreneur provides speed and flexibility.

Another of the greatest advantages of having an intrapreneur in a company is the fact that they are able to increase both the speed and flexibility of all its functions, an extremely important value in today’s competitive market. 

Speed must be taken into account, since business growth becomes more difficult when the market has already been captured and is entrenched. If you have someone in charge of doing new business, the speed of growth, which seemed stagnant, begins to increase.

On the other hand, there is also the fact of flexibility because the market is very large and this makes it possible, and in some cases creates the need, to be able to look at other sectors in order to find new opportunities that will help with growth. 

It is in this context that intrapreneurs will use all their skills to be able to dive into research where they will set out to find new opportunities that go beyond the traditional business, which can bring the company back to a huge spike in attention.

Other advantages that can be obtained...

Within the profile of an intrapreneur you have the fact that they are constructive critics, this will always have a person capable of questioning the established order, who is never satisfied, and who expresses it in a positive way, approaching everything in a different way.

In the same way, you will have a dream employee, one who makes failure an opportunity to learn and will use it as another experience to base everything that comes after.

He recovers quickly from these moments, and provides solutions to put them behind him.

Entrepreneur vs intrapreneur Differences

Now that we have explained what an intrapreneur is, we can then make a completely healthy Entrepreneur vs. Intrapreneur so as not to place both profiles in competition, but to point out more clearly how they differ and which one is really the one you want to be, or the one you need in your case.

Differences in their definitions

On the one hand, we have the definition of entrepreneur, which tells us very directly that it is a person who starts a business.

This means that he himself provides the investment funds, assumes the risk, and is the main decision maker.

On the other hand, we already know that an intrapreneur is an employee of the company who is given the opportunity to act as an entrepreneur.

They have full authority to decide many aspects of new products or services, imitating the previous one but under a brand that is not personal.

Differences in relation to equity

Another important aspect within the Entrepreneur vs. Intrapreneur is that it should be emphasized that the former is the one who assumes all the risks of the project, since it is his money that is at stake.

While the latter is financed by the organization. 

Let’s think that the business has not succeeded and goes bankrupt, the losses generated for the intra-entrepreneur are directly discounted to the company, what he can lose is a little bit of prestige of his ability to make good decisions or, in the worst case, his job. 

This is why the entrepreneur will be recognized as a person who will take many more risks than the intra-entrepreneur.

Which is not a bad thing; many start by developing the ability to go out on their own, contributing ideas and solutions to a company precisely so as not to lose everything before getting to know the business.

General differences

Another difference between an intrapreneur and an entrepreneur is that the former is usually only authorized to make decisions within specific projects or situations.

The latter, on the other hand, does so in all aspects of the company. 

On the other hand, it should be noted that an entrepreneur usually does not have any type of support for his plans.

In those cases where there is a partnership between entrepreneurs, each one is still responsible for the part they are supposed to provide to the business. 

Another aspect that can mean a lot in differentiating them is the fact that the intrapreneur, at all times, is on the payroll of the company.

While the intrapreneur is autonomous, which can cause their earnings to decrease at certain times.


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