THE ENTREPRENEURalways searches for change, RESPONDS to it and exploits it as-2So you’re thinking about reinventing into an entrepreneur? If so, you’d better get familiar with grustle, a word I first heard about roughly a year ago but which holds more meaning to me with each passing day. Grustle, the combination of grind and hustle, accurately describes the day-in and day-out life of an entrepreneur, particularly at the outset of starting a business.


Grind means waking up every day prepared to do whatever it takes to get your business off the ground. It means getting your head in your A-game, being prepared for acting and counter-acting in any circumstance, it means doing things over and over and over again even when they don’t seem to be paying off. And when times get hard or success seems unattainable, it means pushing past those challenges and keeping at something…because you have the drive, the dream, and the conviction to do so.


Hustle, the companion to grind, means (frankly) making shit happen. The hustle takes on two forms (neither one of which is a dance):  1) Creating an opportunity when one doesn’t exist except one’s will and imagination; 2) Seeing opportunity when it presents itself and being able to take advantage of that opportunity. The hustling entrepreneur turns a door cracked open into a door wide open to even the possibility of the door being blown off its hinges. The “hustler,” in the context of the entrepreneur, has to continuously get out there and make business happen, whether that’s in directly driving revenues, fostering partnership relationships, doing marketing, speaking in front of audiences large and small to evangelize what they’re trying to bring to bear, or convincing all kinds of constituents that their product or service is something the market needs and wants.

The Grustle never ends. It’s the modern day version of “Carpe diem.” One small success could be parlayed into a larger one, but large successes do not mean that the entrepreneur can rest on her laurels. The business really cannot continue to exist and grow unless the entrepreneur is willing to get out there and work the grustle every day. Something as demanding as grustle takes a lot of energy, too. The reinvention journey — and the marathon of a process it can be– well-prepares a person for grustle, but you should be conscious of your pacing, too. Much like a marathoner has to pace their speed and energy over the long distance, if you plan to reinvent into an entrepreneur, you need to pace your energy across your reinvention journey but save enough (or build up reserves) so you have energy left over to work the grustle once you know what kind of entrepreneur you’re reinventing into.

Creating that kind of endurance plan could be a real feat! So rev up your engine and get something started — just know what you’re getting yourself into, too.