Lets face it. The youth are the hope for our future. The National Development Planning (NDP) vision 2030 has identified the youth to become entrepreneurs, drive the economy and create jobs. So, we need young entrepreneurs now. Because for us to be able to achieve the NDP’s vision 2030, we need to start now. If you are a young person, and have the potential to become an entrepreneur, do take note of the three nuggets of wisdom shared below. If you know any young person, who similarly has the potential, do make them aware of this article.
To be or not to be an entrepreneur?
A lot of young people are lost. They’re not sure about their career choices and what they’d like to pursue. Most will tell you they want to be entrepreneurs, but even so, they’re not sure about. I’m not sure what the indecisiveness is based on. To help you with this decision, you need to first establish what you want and who you want to be. So, the key question to ask yourself is: What do I want? Who am I? What do I want to be? And if you decide to become an entrepreneur, make up your mind about it and stick to it. The decision merely confirms your ultimate career choice, and doesn’t in any way, mean that you’ll establish your business on the same day. The idea is to take ownership of that title and that role. At that point, it really doesn’t matter whether you have money to start that business. Once you declare that you are an entrepreneur, you will ultimately become what you said you will be. The most important thing is to decide what you want. This will help you to craft your story. And develop your business vision.
Do note that there will be people who will try to discourage you on that idea. Don’t mind them. Focus on what you want.
To cultivate your decision, and ensure that its entrenched in your mind, inspire yourself by:
- Doing research on other successful young entrepreneurs. What are they doing well?
- Getting anything inspirational on entrepreneurship, DVD’s audios, books, everything you can lay your hands on that can give you information. Read. Watch. Listen.
- Driving through one of the biggest cities and imagine yourself being in the corner office on the top floor of one of them. Why not?
Learn as much as you can
So, now that you’ve established what you ultimately want and who you want to be, you need to invest some time to learn about your choices. So, the basis for this lesson is research. Digging, Learning, Identifying. Because this will confirm whether your choice of being an entrepreneur is implementable.
- Start by thinking: What do I want to do? Look at the world’s problems and ask yourself, “What can I do to solve them?” In fact, you could probably start within your community. Identify what their biggest problems are, and identify ways you can help them solve them.
- Identify something that you’re really passionate about. Something that you know that when you do, you get great satisfaction from doing it, and you do it to the best of your ability. Then ask yourself: How are am going to do it?
- Teach yourself. This is when you really need to invest time in learning about entrepreneurship and everything that has got to do with running a business. Get books on entrepreneurship. There are millions of published articles, published writers. Get any available material on business and entrepreneurship and what challenges are highlighted, what to look out for and how to make sure you will ultimately establish a successful business.
- Implement your learnings by doing. Start selling. Sell something. Having identified your community’s problems, you may have come up with what you may sell to them to solve their problems. When you start in your community, and you start small, you’ll know exactly what to provide or create and what your customers require.
Rome was not built in one day: Patience, patience, patience
One of the key characteristics that you will need to develop as a young entrepreneur, is patience. You know the saying that patience is a virtue? You will not get immediate success. Your community may not buy what you’re selling. They don’t think what you’re selling is the best solution to their problems. The secret to it is to break it down to all to smaller pieces. Just aim to get a little better every day and you’ll surprise yourself over time. Go back and understand exactly what their problems are. Have the patience to develop solution that will add value to their lives.
Also, as a young person exposed to technology and all other opportunities, you may be having lots of creative ideas that you want to implement immediately. You will certainly not be successful if you want to take all the ideas and want to implement them. The reality is, there are many great ideas out there and inside of you, but there is probably only one or two that are worth pursuing at any point in time. Some ideas have thee potential to make you rich, but you’ll feel bored within a short space of time, and other ideas may just be perfect to identify your areas of passion, but will not necessarily make you money. So develop the patience to sift through your ideas ruthlessly and to find the best fit between your passion and profitability.
You also need to develop the patience to never give up. Even though you may feel like a failure because community did not buy your first products/services doesn’t mean that your decision to become an entrepreneur will be a failure. Take that lesson as part of your business idea research and information to determine your ultimate success as an entrepreneur.
My challenge to you? Do the right thing.
‘Even if you don’t have the perfect idea to begin with, you can likely adapt.’ Victoria Ransom