Difference between Entrepreneur, Intrapreneur, and a Manager

Sometimes, people confuse the terms entrepreneur, intrapreneur, and manager. But, these terms all have different roles to play in a company. 

An entrepreneur is an innovative person who starts and operates a business for himself/herself. An Intrapreneur is like an entrepreneur but works for other people. A manager manages a group of staff in an existing business. 

If you’re interested in learning more about the differences between an entrepreneur, intrapreneur, and a manager…keep reading… as I’m about to explain each person’s role in a company in detail.

Who Is an Entrepreneur?

An entrepreneur is a person who searches for new ideas and starts an enterprise. He/She uses their creative skills to develop new products and services. They are responsible for carrying out new activities in their business, leading to innovation.

Entrepreneurs take substantial financial risks and also reap enormous profits. 

They work for themselves, so their success and failure solely depend on them. 

Entrepreneurs start companies that generate wealth for themselves and create employment for the people. Entrepreneurs also benefit the government as the economy grows when new wealth is generated. 

Who Is an Intrapreneur?

An Intrapreneur is sometimes confused with the entrepreneur. But, they both have different roles. 

The term intrapreneur describes a new breed of entrepreneurs. 

An Intrapreneur is a person who has entrepreneurial skills but works for a company. An intrapreneur doesn’t start his own venture but is an employee in an existing enterprise. 

He/She comes up with innovative ideas and leads projects but within the organization’s limits.  

Entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs have complementary skills, but an intrapreneur doesn’t take risks like an entrepreneur. Hence, an intrapreneur can introduce new unique products and services for a company, but the rewards are not substantial.

The best examples of companies with intrapreneurs are Microsoft, Apple, Google, Facebook, etc. 

Who Is a Manager?

A manager is an employee in a company who manages a group of staff, controls resources, and performs administrative tasks. A manager is not a risk-taker like an entrepreneur or intrapreneur, but he/she must ensure that office is running smoothly.

Managers have a role in dealing with everyday affairs of ongoing issues within a company.

In some cases, managers are in charge of a department; in others, managers are in charge of the whole business, i.e., restaurants. 

Overall, managers play a crucial role in the success of a company. They’re responsible for leading employees, meeting goals, and achieving business metrics. 

Entrepreneur vs. Intrapreneur vs. Manager 

Now, let’s discuss the differences between entrepreneurs, intrapreneurs, and managers.

MotivationAn entrepreneur wants financial freedom and be his/her own boss. An intrapreneur wants to get rewards from the company, such as bonusesA manager wants a promotion and moves up the corporate ladder
GoalsAn entrepreneur has long term goalsAn intrapreneur has medium to long term goalsA manager focuses on daily, weekly, monthly, or yearly goals
RiskAn entrepreneur is a high-risk takerAn intrapreneur is also a risk-taker, but within the limits of the company he/she is working forDoes not take any risk
WorkAn entrepreneur is self-employedAn intrapreneur works for othersA manager also works for others
Decision-MakingEntrepreneur makes all of their own decisionsAn intrapreneur is less involved in decision makingA manager has to agree to decisions made by the superiors
ThinkingEntrepreneurs are free thinkersIntrapreneurs are also free thinkers but within the limit of the company’s activityA manager is not a free thinker
FundAn entrepreneur needs to deal with fundraisingAn intrapreneur is not concerned with fundraisingA manager is not worried about fundraising
SkillsMarketing, Sales, Accounting, Innovative, Problem-Solving SkillsInnovative, Problem-Solving SkillsManagerial Skills

Should You be an Entrepreneur, Intrapreneur, or a Manager?

Now that the difference between entrepreneur, intrapreneur and manager is clear to you. You might be thinking about which career path is best for you. Well, this depends upon your personality. 

If you’re great at networking, know how to solve problems, have time and the budget to run and operate a company, then entrepreneurship will be more interesting to you.

Entrepreneurship should allow you to introduce new products and services to fill the market gap.

On the other hand, if you have entrepreneurial skills but don’t want the risks of a startup, then you can opt for intrapreneurship. Intrapreneur tends to take less risk compared to entrepreneurs. 

Lastly, if you’re not innovative and want to work for an existing company, becoming a manager should be fine. 

But, If you ask me what I would choose. Even though entrepreneurship comes with significant risk, I would surely go for entrepreneurship because I’m a free thinker and want to be my own boss and achieve financial freedom. 

This is only my personal opinion; you should choose the career you like the most. 

Is It Easier to Be an Intrapreneur or an Entrepreneur?  

Intrapreneurship is easier than entrepreneurship because intrapreneurs don’t have to deal with the risks of a startup. Intrapreneurs also don’t have to worry about fundraising, marketing of the product, and sales. 

Intrapreneurs only need to have innovative skills to introduce new products for the company they are working for. 

Intrapreneurship is also easy because if the product you introduce to the market fails, the company you work for will have to take the loss.

On the other hand, if entrepreneurs fail, they have to take all the losses themselves. So even it could lead to bankruptcy. 


In Conclusion, an entrepreneur works for himself while an intrapreneur and a manager works for others. An entrepreneur has creative ideas and creates new products and services under his/her name, while an intrapreneur creates new products/services for their company. Entrepreneurs are great risk-takers, while intrapreneurs and managers are moderate to low risk-takers.

I hope you liked my article. If I missed any topic, please give me your suggestions in the comments.

Thanks for reading. 

You may also want to read… Why do entrepreneurs fail as managers?

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