The first wave of baby boomer women, now in their 50s and early 60s, are embracing the idea of striking out on their own as entrepreneurs. Many are looking for an “encore” career where they can pursue what they care about and generate an income for the second half of life.

First, here is my definition of an entrepreneur:

“An entrepreneur is someone who sees an opportunity to be in business for herself and takes it. She creates something that did not exist before and takes the risk required to do so.”

Based on my personal observation of many women in midlife who get the entrepreneurial call, boomer women entrepreneurs have 7 traits in common. This holds whether they plan to launch a business that grows to be big, or they plan to keep it small – possibly as a solo-entrepreneur and home-based.

1) Autonomy. Entrepreneurs have a strong desire for autonomy. Women at midlife often lose patience playing by corporate rules and want to call their own shots and put their own values first.

2) Resilience. Entrepreneurs have the ability to bounce back from setbacks. It takes resilience to get through the roadblocks that will inevitably show up. At midlife and beyond, women have learned to be resilient, as they’ve weathered life’s ups and downs.

3) Initiative. Entrepreneurs are self-starters. The most successful entrepreneurs also keep the momentum going after the initial burst of energy.

4) Confidence. Entrepreneurs believe in themselves and get others to believe in them too. They have the confidence to find the resources they need and the ability to ask for help and support.

5) Intuitive. Entrepreneurs have good business instincts. They use left-brain rational thinking to analyze problems, but they also trust their intuition, which is often correct. Women tend to trust their intuition in business more often than men.

6) Decisive. Entrepreneurs are action oriented. They make decisions and take the actions required to get them to their desired results. Midlife women have had a lifetime of experience to fine-tune their decision-making ability.

7) Connects. Entrepreneurs build relationships. They build networks and thrive on seeing opportunities for connections for mutual benefit. At midlife, women have well-developed networks, which is an advantage in starting and sustaining a business.

This is not the definitive list, but I invite you to use it as a checklist. Rate yourself on each trait.

How entrepreneurial are you?

Amy Grossman, MBA, empowers women at midlife and beyond to turn their interests, strengths and experience into a business of their own to generate an income, find meaning in their work, and live a balanced and fulfilled life. For a FREE “Business Starter Kit” on how to create meaning and money at mid-life.