There was a time when the toughest decision for a college graduate was which one of five job offers they would accept upon graduation. Today’s graduates are entering a much different world and not so optimistic marketplace. Students have seen the constant restructuring and downsizing of top companies directly impact their career possibilities. With the increase in the number of qualified professionals seeking entry-level positions, the landscape for graduates is much more competitive. As a result, many graduates have limited options; either a) stay in school to pursue a graduate degree because there are no jobs or b) take the first job offer you get, and run!
But what about answer c) – starting a business? This option has become a trend for many graduates who are looking to take control of their destiny at an early age. A recent study by The Global Entrepreneurship Monitor shows that 18 to 24-year-olds in the United States are starting businesses at a faster rate than 35 to 44-year-olds. Many universities are now grooming students for business ownership by focusing on entrepreneurship as a major or concentration.
Locally, Northern Kentucky University’s Entrepreneur Institute has been a very successful program that has prepared students for starting a business or buying a franchise. For those students who may not have a business plan developed, becoming a franchisee allows them to learn the ins and outs of business ownership while having a support team to help ensure success. What’s better for a young person than real hands-on experience?
A warning for those who wait until later in life to begin an entrepreneurial venture – we all know that sometimes “life happens”, which may include marriage, children or simply deciding to take that first job offer right out of school. However, any of these factors can easily detour the aspiring graduate’s entrepreneurial goals until they slowly fade away. Starting a business earlier in life allows you to take risks you wouldn’t normally take as an older individual.
There are many reasons to start a business sooner rather than later. If you are successful in your business venture, great!! Enjoy the fruits of your labor and hopefully you will reap the professional and financial success you desire. But what if that college graduate fails? The answer is: SO WHAT! What is the worst that could happen, money lost? You can always earn that money back. The real world experience learned by that student is priceless! It can provide lessons that will be utilized within their next business venture. Conversely, what employer wouldn’t be impressed with someone who has owned a business, and can now bring that experience to their organization? And for that student looking to apply to graduate school, that business experience will look very attractive on a college application.
Some parents are helping their children realize their entrepreneurial dreams by forming parent/child teams to purchase a franchise business. This has become a great opportunity to bond with their child and get them moving in the right direction (with a little parental supervision). No matter the age, the longer one waits to start a business, the more reasons they will find not to do it. So when is the best time to start a business or buy a franchise? Answer: the minute you finish reading this article
Darian Richardson is the owner of RMC Franchise Connect in Cincinnati & Northern Kentucky. You can contact Darian at (513) 407-8475 or firstname.lastname@example.org or his website