ADHD, the entrepreneur gene?
Adults with ADHD are six times more likely to start their own business, according to the Economist magazine. ADHD entrepreneurs create a lot of businesses, with a low estimate of ADHD prevalence at 4%, effectively one in five (20%) of all businesses have ADHD entrepreneurs at the helm!
In my coaching somewhere around half my clients run their own business, sometimes very large businesses indeed, for some good reasons:
- creative and out of the box thinker
- great at making connections both with ideas and people
- prepared to take risks, in fact risks are exciting
- driven by passion and novelty
- work well as a hybrid easily taking many work roles
- able to take on many different work roles
- always focused on efficiency and problem solving
- don’t want a boss
There are many clear reasons why ADHD adults choose to set up a business and are suited to high-risk, rapidly changing, less rigid and specialised environments. Silicon valley is testament to the power of neurodiversity being given the right context to flourish.
What goes up must come down
But the yin and yang of ADHD means that what is given with one hand is taken away with the other. There are problems to offset the advantages. If you feel that you fit with the positives, do you also fit with these ADHD negatives:
- Too busy with urgent stuff to tackle the important?
- Find handling repetitive and mundane tasks difficult?
- Haven’t sorted out a PA yet as you’re a perfectionist and don’t know how to delegate?
- Procrastinate excessively, overwhelmed by certain tasks?
- Late on meeting critical deadlines?
- Want to sort out, use and respect a calendar?
- Feel unfulfilled and wish to change, perhaps “stuck” in a rut?
- Spin many plates yet don’t make the progress you desire?
- Struggle with indecision, too many options?
- Wish to better plan you time, to be more consistent and considered?
- Finances are neglected
ADHD entrepreneurs work well with other people
If you fit this description, whether formally diagnosed or not, an ADHD coach can really help. You can work with a coach who understands your nature, and can work in you “executive” team. As a business coach they can work with you to find lasting solutions: whether hiring a PA, creating a better routine, resolving a key decision or defining a strategy. In theory you might do this alone but the reality is you won’t. ADHD entrepreneurs prefer action to reflection and planning, so a coach helps you focus on these essential elements of your business.