Entrepreneurs can be of different types. Some may prefer to go it alone or share the risk in groups with others. They are found in every economic system and every form of economic activity as well as in other social and cultural activities. They are seen from amongst farmers, labourers, fishermen, tribals, artisans, artists, importers, exporters, bankers, professionals, politicians, bureaucrats and so many others. Basing on the above features C. Danhof has broadly classified entrepreneurs into four types. These are discussed below.
1. Innovative Entrepreneur:
In the early phases of economic development, entrepreneurs have initiative to start new ventures and find innovative ways to start an enterprise. Thus, innovative entrepreneurs are those who introduces new products, new method of production techniques, or discovers a new market or a new service or reorganises the enterprise. It is the innovative entrepreneurs who built the modern capitalism. They are commonly found in developed countries. They are aggressive in nature who exhibit cleverness in putting attractive possibilities into practice.
2. Imitative Entrepreneur:
There is a second group of entrepreneurs generally referred as imitative entrepreneurs. They usually copy or adopt suitable innovations made by innovative entrepreneurs. They are adoptive and more flexible. They are organisers of factors of production rather than creator. The imitative entrepreneurs are also revolutionary and important. They' contribute to the development of underdeveloped economies.
3. Fabian Entrepreneurs:
The third type of entrepreneur is Fabian Entrepreneurs. Such type of entrepreneurs are very shy and lazy by nature. They are very cautious people. They do not venture to take risks. They are rigid and fundamental in their approach. Usually, they are second generation entrepreneurs in a family business enterprise. They follow the footsteps of their successors. They imitate only when they are very clear that failure to do so would result in a loss of the relative position in the enterprise.
4. Drone Entrepreneurs:
The fourth type of entrepreneur is Drone entrepreneurs who refuse to copy or use opportunities that come on their way. They are conventional in their approach. They are not ready to make changes in their existing production methods even if they suffer losses. They resist changes. They may be termed as laggards.
The above types of entrepreneurs is not comprehensive for it aims at highlighting the broad range of entrepreneurs found in business and profession. Following are some more types of entrepreneurs listed according to the type of business, use of technology, motivation, growth and stages of development.
According to the Type of Business
Depending on the nature size, type of business, entrepreneurs are divided into five categories. They are as follows :
Business entrepreneurs are those entrepreneurs who develop an idea for a new product or service and then establish an enterprise to materialise their idea into reality. Most of the entrepreneurs belong to this category because majority of entrepreneurs are found in the field of small trading and manufacturing concerns.
An entrepreneur who undertakes trading activities whether domestic or overseas is known as a trading entrepreneur. He has to identify the potential market for his product in order to stimulate the demand for the same. He pushes many ideas ahead of others in the form demonstration to promote his business.
Industrial entrepreneurs are essentially manufacturers who manufacture products and services which have an effective demand in the marketing They have the ability to convert the economic resources and technology into a profitable venture.
Corporate entrepreneur is one who through his innovative ideas and skill able to organise, manage and control a corporate undertaking very effectively and efficiently. Usually, he is a promoter of the undertaking/corporation engaged himself either in business, trade or industry.
Agricultural entrepreneur is one who undertakes agricultural as well as allied activities in the field of agriculture. He engages himself in raising and marketing of crops, fertilisers and other inputs of agriculture through employment of modern techniques, machines and irrigation.
According to use of Technology
The entrepreneurs may be classified into the following categories on the basis of application of new technology in various sectors of the economy.
An entrepreneur who is technical by nature in the sense who is capable of developing new and improved quality of goods and services out of his own knowledge, skill and specialisation is called a technical entrepreneur. He is essentially compared to a craftsman who concentrates more on production than marketing.
Non-technical entrepreneurs are those who are mainly concerned with developing alternative marketing and distribution strategies to promote their business. They are not concerned with the technical aspects of the product and services they are dealing with.
Professional entrepreneurs are those who make it a profession to establish business enterprises with a purpose to sell it once it is established. He is always looking forward to develop alternative projects by selling the running business. He is not interested in managing and operations of the business established by him. He is very dynamic in his attitude.
According to Motivation
Entrepreneurs basing upon their motivating factors can be classified into three types as spontaneous, induced and motivated entrepreneurs.
Spontaneous entrepreneurs are otherwise known as pure entrepreneurs who are motivated by their desire for self fulfillment and to achieve or prove their excellence in job performance. They undertake entrepreneurial activities for their personal satisfaction in work, ego, or status. Their strength lies in their creative abilities. They are the natural entrepreneurs in any society. They do not need any external motivation.
Induced entrepreneurs are those who are induced to enter into entrepreneurship because of various governmental support provided in terms of financial assistance, incentives, concessions and other facilities to the people who want to set up of their new enterprises. Sometimes prospective entrepreneurs are induced or even forced by their special circumstance, such as loss of job or inability to find a suitable job according to their talent and merit to adapt to entrepreneurship.
Motivated entrepreneurs are those who are motivated by their desire to make use of their technical and professional expertise and skill in performing the job or project they have taken up. They have enough confidence in their abilities. They are highly ambitious and are normally not satisfied by the slow progress in their jobs. They entered into entrepreneurship because of the possibility of making and marketing of some new products or service for the use of prospective consumer. If the product or service is developed to a saleable stage and the customers accept the same, the entrepreneur is then further motivated by reward in terms of profit.
Other Categories of Entrepreneurs
Solo operators are those entrepreneurs who essentially work alone or have a few employees. In the beginning, most of the entrepreneurs when start their enterprises perceive themselves like them.
Active partners are basically solo operators who start an enterprise as a joint venture. It is important that all of them actively participate in the business of the firm.
There are certain entrepreneurs who only contribute funds to the enterprise without actively participating in various activities of the firm are known as simply partners.
There are some entrepreneurs whose chief competence is their creativity and inventiveness to invent new product are called as inventors. They like to invent new products and services through their research and innovative activities and may need to set up a business enterprise to make them commercially viable. Their interest is basically in research, and they often-lack managerial experience or desire to run a business.
These are the entrepreneurs who get into the business because of the challenge it represents. They tend to get bored when it seems that challenges are met and doing well. Then they begin to search for newer challenges.
Lifetimers are those entrepreneurs who see their business as an integral part to their life. It is a matter of ego satisfaction and personal concern of lifetimers to run the business successfully. Family enterprises and business come in this category.
Buyers are those entrepreneurs who tend to purchase business rather than start one themselves as it appears to them to be less risky alternative. They do not like to bear much risk.
These are the entrepreneurs who always take up high growth industries which have substantial growth prospects in future. Such entrepreneurs grow with the growth of industries and vice-versa.
Entrepreneurs who have shown tremendous growth performance in their enterprise are called as super-growth entrepreneurs. The growth performance of enterprise is characterized by liquidity of funds, profitability and gearing.
These entrepreneurs start their industrial unit by means of their own innovative skill and expertise. They usually combine different technologies to produce marketable products or services for the consumers. They are essentially innovators having no entrepreneurial background.
A classical entrepreneur is a stereotype entrepreneur who is concerned with the customers and marketing needs through a development of a self- supporting venture. His main aim is to maximise his economic gains at a level consistent with the survival of the firm with or without an element of growth.
Modern entrepreneurs are those who undertake ventures which run smoothly along with the changing demand of the products or service in the market. They also take up such ventures which suit the current marketing needs of the consumers.
Inherited entrepreneurs or entrepreneurs by inheritance are seen in India where entrepreneurs inherit the family business through succession and pass it from one generation to another.
Sometimes circumstances compel persons to accept entrepreneurial activities, even if they lack proper understanding and training in the respective field. They are known as forced entrepreneurs. Unemployed youth/job seekers, rich farmers are few examples of such category.
When an entrepreneur is a male one who owns, manages, and controls the business enterprise is called a men/male entrepreneur. They are the key players in any developing economy particularly in terms of their contribution to economic development.
Women or female entrepreneurs are those section of the female population who venture out into industrial activities in the field of manufacturing, assembling, job works, repairs/servicing and other business. The women take the lead, organise and manage the business or industry and help in providing employment to others.
Rural entrepreneurs are those who want to carry out their entrepreneurial activities in the rural and backward sector of the economy. They set up their enterprises in rural areas.
Urban entrepreneurs are those who establish their enterprises in the urban or developed sector or the economy and carry out their entrepreneurial activities more successfully than the rural entrepreneurs.
Besides the above types of entrepreneurs a large number of other types of entrepreneurs are also seen in the economy who have established their business undertakings and perform entrepreneurial activities successfully. They are retail entrepreneurs, services entrepreneurs, large scale entrepreneurs, traditional entrepreneurs, skilled, national, international, bureaucratic entrepreneurs and many more.