Struggles and Advantages of the Next Generation Entrepreneur
A glimpse of the differences between past and present entrepreneurs.
Back in the “good ole’ days”, you would frequently hear of start-up storefronts that began with nothing and transformed into these great successes. When is the last time you heard one of those stories? It probably was not that recently. In a struggling economy when most emerging entrepreneurs are weighed down by enormous student debts, not many people can obtain the funds needed to open up a brick and mortar store. Beyond that, the brick and mortar model is becoming less and less needed in our technological world. With certain struggles that exist for the next generation entrepreneur, there are also many advantages.
- Less access to funding, but do you need it?
Last I checked, there are not banks lining up to provide funding for every new idea out there, and if there were, would you want to take it? College graduates are entering the workforce with more student loan debt than any previous generations. Though they may have brilliant ideas that just need to take fruition, many young entrepreneurs are faring on the side of caution when it comes to starting new businesses. While this does sound like a negative, there are some silver linings. What do you do when you are low on funds? Just like the creative ramen noodle concoctions you invented in college, you think outside of the box. The next generation entrepreneur is not only creative with their solutions but also resourceful. By merging job skills with others and learning to wear more than one hat, today’s entrepreneur is set apart from those of the past.
- Business moves faster, but that may not always be a good thing.
If you stop and think about it, you can basically have anything you want within just a matter of hours or days as long as you have the money for it. I can notice that I am out of paper towels, place an Amazon order, and have them on my front porch in two days or less without even leaving my home. I think we have become so conditioned by the technology in our everyday lives that we do not even consider the marvel of it all. Because of this high-tech environment that we are conditioned to, business transactions can happen very quickly. When it comes to high-stakes transactions, this can be a danger rather than a blessing. I come from the mentality that when it comes to big decisions, it is always best to “sleep on it.” The faster we do business, the less time next generation entrepreneurs are spending sleeping on it.
- Less person-to-person contact with your clients, but can you recreate that with social media?
Most entrepreneurs that I know do not operate in a storefront. Most of their business is handled over the phone, through emails, and in the comfort of their office or home. Because of this common model, we have very little in-person contact with our clients. There is something about face-to-face connections that instantly bond you in a way that a phone call or email simply does not do. How do we recreate those personal bonds that create loyal customers? Social media has provided the next generation entrepreneur with many tools for forming connections with the people they do business with. By providing your clients with a glimpse of your life and what you are all about, those personal connections can be recreated in a way that matches the societal norms of business today.
While it can be easy to glorify the entrepreneurs of the past, it is important that the next generation entrepreneurs see the power in the hand in which they were dealt.