Is Entrepreneurship the Smart Move for Youths of Today?
A look into the Millennials movement away from the corporate world and into the realms of entrepreneurship for young adults
By: Matt Smith, Staff Writer
It’s the classic success story. You finish school and get an internship, or low level job, at a big company. You work hard, network, and show dedication until you finally get offered a promotion. Then you wash, rinse, and repeat the process. Year after year you work hard in hopes of getting another promotion and jumping up to a new position in the company. Your goal? To be the boss. It’s a process known famously as “climbing the corporate ladder.” The idea that one must pay their dues before they can receive success or power. It’s a viable option and one many people chose to take. But is this the only option?
The movement away from corporations
Every day, millions of people quit their jobs working for a corporation and pursue their own independent interests. In fact, a recent study conducted by ODesk revealed that “61% [of Millennials] say they are likely to quit [their jobs] within two years” and that “58% classified themselves as entrepreneurs.”
Whether it’s starting a small business, creating a new web service, or starting the next social media website, entrepreneurs are becoming increasingly popular, especially amongst the youths of today.
Why is there a shift from climbing the corporate ladder to becoming an entrepreneur?
Critics of the “me” generation (a nickname for those born in this generation) have seen the surge of youth entrepreneurs as a byproduct of entitlement. Critics scoff at the idea that a young man or woman wishes to be their own boss without “paying their dues” or having been the “lunch chooch.”
In 2011 Canadian Business reported that “more than half of all workers are dissatisfied with their work.”
Maybe the youth generation of today doesn’t wish to end up like more than 50% of all other workers. Instead of slaving away at a job which doesn’t interest or satisfy you, why not quit and pursue a career that does. Transferring to entrepreneurship allows you to be your own boss, pick your own hours, choose your own goals, and do what you want.
Millennials are learning from the past
Bill Gates, Richard Branson, and Steve Jobs. What do all these three names have in common? Not only are they all entrepreneurs, billionaires, and creators of some of the most used products in the world, but they’re all a part of the cohort which is so adamant in criticizing the generation of today. These three entrepreneurs, among innumerable other names, started their own businesses and not only were successful, but changed the world as we know it. Millennials today have looked to the past and realized that some of the most success businessmen started off as entrepreneurs. Millennials see that not all success stories come from climbing the corporate ladder.
Even the past ten years have yielded some great entrepreneurial success stories.
Mark Zuckerberg was only 20 years old when he founded Facebook. His social media website has revolutionized the world ever since. Facebook’s newsroom page touts that every day, on average, 699 million people actively use Facebook. 699 million people use a service which was created and is currently run by an entrepreneur. Zuckerberg’s venture has rewarded him in roughly $14 billion dollars and the honour of Time Magazine’s Person of the Year.
Zuckerberg isn’t the only successful youth entrepreneur who has found inspiration due to the growth of the internet and technology. To name a few:
Google: Founded by Larry Page and Sergey Brin both at age 25.
Tumblr: Founded by David Karp at age 21.
YouTube: Founded by Steve Chen, Chad Hurley, and Jawed Karim at age 27, 28, and 26 respectively.