Contrary to popular belief about entrepreneurship, the optimal age group to start a business is between 21 and 40 years old. This fact, which may offend the image of the traditional owner of an SME, takes on its full meaning when we know that Millennials and Generation Z, very different from previous generations, have all the facilities and ingredients necessary to develop in as entrepreneurs. In fact, 14% fear that they will not be taken seriously because of their age, and 42% of aspiring entrepreneurs believe that the older they are, the more likely they are to be successful. This is data from the Global Entrepreneurship Observatory, a study that monitors the real state of entrepreneurship around the world.
Technology, an ally that previous generations did not have
One of the advantages young entrepreneurs have, according to the survey, is their technological knowledge. 19% of Spaniards surveyed think they adapt better to new technologies than other generations; while 14% think they are more likely to have new and unexplored ideas, and 13% of those who want to open a business say they have a greater availability of resources compared to other generations.
This vision, similar to that of Italy, is opposed to that expressed by the citizens of other European countries, such as France and Germany, and the United States, for whom the experience is a sign of responsibility. and the stability needed to open a business. In fact, they believe you should have, on average, 5½ years of work experience before you jump into the entrepreneurial pipeline. In Spain, the recommended baggage period is reduced to 4 years.
If you wait, you miss the train. Motivations to undertake
Almost 75% of those questioned say they dream of being an entrepreneur. Among them, nearly 5 in 10 (48%), indicate that what motivates them the most is to become their own boss, 44% put forward the possibility of following their passion, 36% give a career change and 3 out of 10 prefer to obtain greater flexibility at work and support their families (30% in both cases). Additionally, among those who had a job before and are now interested in becoming entrepreneurs, 57% point out that one of the reasons was that they were tired of being told ‘no’ by older employees and managers. % don’t feel their ideas have been reflected in their previous posts.
“Working with entrepreneurs over the past 41 years has taught us that, regardless of age, the difference between success and failure is often found in a good business foundation, a willingness to learn and to grow. adapting and a passion for the job, ”he explains. John DeSimone, President of Herbalife Nutrition, who adds that “Entrepreneurship is a great opportunity to gain more control over our lives and, contrary to stereotypes, young people can have the most valuable skills to be successful. There is no time like the present to follow, each one, his passion ”.
Challenges for Millennials and Generation Z. The pandemic, a specific obstacle to entrepreneurship
7 in 10 Spaniards say their generation faces unique challenges when starting a business, compared to previous generations. Among these challenges, the most repeated by respondents are the ability to adapt to the pandemic (38%), earn enough money to offset the investment costs (36%), have a sufficient budget to grow the business (32%) and make sales. or get customers (31%). In addition, they also mention economic instability, uncertainty, competitiveness and bureaucracy as obstacles faced by entrepreneurs. All these issues are common to the majority of the populations surveyed, from the United States or Argentina, via France or Germany, and even Japan or Turkey.
“As young entrepreneurs learn to deal with the day-to-day rigors of starting their own business, it’s imperative to surround yourself with a supportive community that includes mentors and people who continually take them to the next level,” says DeSimone.
The uncertainty linked to the Covid-19 pandemic has made it difficult to create new businesses and consolidate new entrepreneurs to the point that 67% of Spanish respondents say they do not intend to leave their current job, even if they want it. . For 47% of Spaniards, 2020 has been a particularly difficult year for this sector; in fact, the same percentage say they had to shut down their business for this problem. However, more than half of respondents (67%) say their aspirations to start their own business remain intact despite all the downsides.
Young and enterprising, without ties and with a greater sense of risk
The survey also found that younger respondents are less likely to support a family or have to pay a mortgage, allowing for a more adventurous and exploratory approach to being their own boss. This desire is the main motivating factor indicated by nearly 5 in 10 future entrepreneurs (48%), followed by the possibility of following one’s passion (44%), of changing careers (36%), of achieving greater flexibility in work and supporting the family (30% in both cases).