HEC Montreal Meets The Dragons

A few days ago, I had the chance to attend the event HEC Montréal Rencontre les Dragons. Three of the Dragons from the TV show were interviewed on how they perceive entrepreneurship and on what it takes to be a great entrepreneur. This post is a very condensed summary of a few of the topics that were discussed that day.


We know that the parent’s personality and behaviors have a major impact on the child’s personality. This is especially true for entrepreneurs. Most of them are entrepreneurs because of their familial environment. They were raised in an entrepreneur-friendly ecosystem. Most of the time, their parents were also entrepreneurs.


Even though entrepreneurs often dislike working for someone else, the Dragons agreed that working for large businesses before starting a venture can provide valuable experience and market knowledge. This is also a good place to start if a young businessman wants to learn how to sell, how to go to market and how to distribute a product. Having a secured job is often the Plan B for many entrepreneurs, especially when the startup is running low in cash. While this can reduce the amount of time and energy an entrepreneur can invest in his own project (which was for some, a major drawback), there are also benefits that must not be neglected.


There is a line between entrepreneurs and managers. Entrepreneurs are creators. They use their intuition to build a new business from scratch. Managers, on the other hand, are more like operators. When a startup becomes well established, some entrepreneurs get bored and feel the need to find a new challenge. The business then needs an operator. This lust for creation is a driving force for many entrepreneurs, especially serial-entrepreneurs.


For the Dragons, being successful involves a little bit of luck. Entrepreneurs need to create their luck. Luck is being at the right place at the right moment. Luck is being prepared for the right opportunity.

Do you agree with these propositions? What do you think makes and motivates a great entrepreneur? Feel free to comment.

Picture by SP Veres