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Your Founder Sign: The Outsider—Serious, Consistent, and Skilled at Your Craft

Illustration of The Founder's Zodiac sign, the Cartographer

After studying some of the one million business owners who use Shopify, we’ve discovered that founder types tend to fall into one of five groups. Which one are you? Start with our personality quiz.

Slow and steady wins the race! You’re not here for the medals, though, Outsider—you’re just taking careful steps on your way to securing your financial future. In business, you’re a solo artist, a specialist in your craft. 

Outsider strengths 🛠️

Your superpower is your pragmatic approach to your work. People trust you because you’re serious and consistent—a trait loyal customers are sure to appreciate. You deliver on your commitments and you do it on time. Your business is your steady paycheck—and that’s important to you. 

As a specialist, your attention to detail is impeccable. You’re not interested in growth or change, and you’d rather dedicate your time to perfecting your craft, your way. As you tend to operate solo, you’re able to touch every aspect of the business and maintain consistency. In the process you’ve grown skills outside of your area of expertise, like customer service, marketing, and business finance.

Does this sound like you? Take our poll to see how you stack up:

Outsider opportunities 🥽

Watch out for complacency, Outsider. The more you resist change, the harder it will be to adapt when life pitches you one outside the strike zone. You don’t like surprises, so be prepared when they come your way. Be sure you have coping strategies in your back pocket when you need to de-stress. And, develop a Plan B to evolve with the changing landscape of entrepreneurship and technology.

Push outside your comfort zone to gather ideas and energy from other founders.

You’re a lone wolf. That’s not necessarily a shortfall, but it can certainly get lonely in your echo chamber. Push outside your comfort zone to gather ideas and energy from other founders. Start with those in your industry who are also experts at your craft—a common ground will help you develop confidence in social situations. 

Unpopular opinion: you may not be the best person to handle every aspect of your business. Your self-reliance is usually an asset but it could bite you if you’re spending too much time on areas of the business that don’t play to your strengths and interests. Warm up to the idea by starting slow—maybe hire a virtual assistant to help with more tedious tasks.

💡 Your best business bets? What are you good at? Do you work for a company in a highly specialized role? Are you a skilled artisan making things as a hobby? Consider how that skill could be the foundation for your own business. Get the full list of ideas. 📝

Fictional Outsider: David Rose

David Rose stands at a counter in Rose Apothecary in a scene from Schitt's Creek on CBC

Disagreeable, cynical, and close-minded, David Rose is a true Outsider. He resisted adapting to his new life in Schitt’s Creek after falling hard from the social elite. Change made David itch, and finding his place in his severely less comfortable surroundings took a while. Literal seasons. But David’s positive Outsider qualities—pragmatism, expertise, and an unsentimental approach to business—helped him find his place in the one-horse town.

I'm trying very hard not to connect with people right now.

David Rose, Schitt's Creek

While David resisted the input of his life and business partner, Patrick (and that of pretty much everyone else), a few humbling moments—like Jocelyn’s knack for sales—eventually softened his Outsider edges. The former New Yorker launched his chic, curated lifestyle boutique Rose Apothecary in a small-town market he didn’t yet understand. But his care and attention to detail helped him win over the clientele. And snag a long-overdue win for the Rose family in the process.

📚 Read more: How to Be a Boss: 19 Tips from Schitt’s Creek

Outsider of the animal kingdom: the owl

Close-up of an owl with brown feathers and red eyesDue to their perceived stature, piercing eyes, and purposeful movements, owls are seen as being wise and mysterious. Like the Outsider, they are typically solo and more serious than playful. These task-oriented creatures dedicate their time fastidiously to their craft—procuring tasty rodents for a meal. They are highly skilled hunters, even on a moonless night, detecting prey by sound alone. The single-minded owl doesn’t waste time building nests (why diversify?) but rather takes up residence in the nests of other birds, hollow trees, or deserted structures.

🌟 Explore the other signs: Mountaineer | Trailblazer | Cartographer | Firestarter

👇 Click to share on Twitter: I’m the Outsider: meticulous, self-reliant, consistent. What’s your entrepreneur personality? Take the quiz by @Shopify

Illustrations by Alice Mollon