Having a great product, an amazing team and an IQ over 120 are not sufficient for success. An entrepreneur must also possess effective social skills . They must rely on these skills to form relationships with customers, suppliers, employees and venture capitalists. They have to convince people to love their product, idea and vision. They need to create an environment of collaboration in order to facilitate interaction between employees.
Founders must be the person to lead their team to success and their social skills are critical in this endeavor.
Research suggests that socially competent entrepreneurs create more effective personal relationships , receive more funding , are more financially successful  and have more successful companies  than entrepreneurs who lack effective social skills.
Social competence is therefore a key differentiating factor between the success and failure of an entrepreneur and his venture.
The 5 factors that underlie social competence in entrepreneurship
1. Social perceptionIs the ability to accurately perceive others (their traits, intentions and motives). Social perception assists the entrepreneur in:
- Determining whether others are being truthful in negotiations
- Choosing the best job applicants
- Determining the cause of a substandard performance
- Correctly gauging current moods and emotions of others
2. Impression managementInvolves techniques for inducing positive reactions in others. Entrepreneurs with good impression management skills:
- Use flattery to their advantage
- Appear to like someone even when they don’t
- Agree with others when it’s appropriate
- Enhance their appearance and image
3. PersuasivenessInvolves the ability to change others’ views or behavior in desired directions.Persuasiveness is important when obtaining financing, recruiting key employees, interacting with customers and conducting negotiations.
4. Social adaptability
Is the ability to adapt and feel comfortable in a wide range of situations. Entrepreneurs with good social adaptability can.
- Easily adjust to any social situation
- Be comfortable talking with many types of people
5. Social expressivenessThe ability to express one’s emotions and feelings clearly in order to generate enthusiasm in others. Social expressiveness is related to success for entrepreneurs in the high-tech industry .
All five of the factors that underlie social competence are essential for entrepreneurial success. They each contribute to an entrepreneur’s ability to connect with employees, customers, prospects and venture capitalists. Social competence is the key to selling a vision, inspiring greatness and leading a team to success.