blog Entrepreneurship | 4min Read
Published on December 2, 2020
‘I want to grow up and be an entrepreneur.’
At some point in your life, you might have had a brush with this thought. Maybe ever since you found out what that word means, the thought might have floated in to your head. Making big decisions, taking chances, getting rewarded in big cheques, being the boss, working out of beaches in Bali, and just having control over every aspect of life.
But it could remain as a fuzzy dream at the back of your mind. You go to college, experience more of life. Suddenly that entrepreneur dream gets pushed back a bit. Maybe you’ll do a job first, get some experience. Then you start making good money and start buying fancy stuff. Then you start travelling more and your expenses go up. You want a bigger house, a nicer car. Maybe you get married, so now you need to plan expenses with your spouse. Maybe you want to have kids. Before you know it, you’re in your 40’s wondering what happened to that entrepreneurial dream.
Now don’t worry, this scenario is a bit extreme to think about when you’re still in school. And it also doesn’t mean that you need to start a business as soon as you turn 18. The point is to start understanding what entrepreneurship actually means. Maybe you’ll realise that you don’t want to ever start a business. Maybe what you really want to do is have a great job and give your all to the company. But how will you know unless you test the waters.
So what does it mean to be an entrepreneur? Does it mean someone who has their own business? But if you’re running your own business, doesn’t that make you a manager. Is it about making money? But what if you dreamed of making ten crores and you make it. Would you stop working and just enjoy that money?
A true entrepreneur is someone who takes on the risk of a business, and doesn’t stop there. They dream of doing things that others would be too scared of trying. Elon Musk runs Tesla and also wants to create a colony on Mars. What do you think the risk with something like that is?
An entrepreneur doesn’t need to be that crazy, but they need to be that hungry. They can’t be greedy, because you could be in major debt and still start a new business. They don’t need to have fancy degrees, because many of the successful ones are college dropouts. Entrepreneurs risk speaking their ideas, to live their own dream. Age isn’t a factor because Richard Branson was 16 when he started his first company, and Colonel Sanders was 65 when he started KFC. They saw an opportunity for their dreams and took it. And the main thing they had in common, was failure.
Our school systems teach us how to pass, not how to fail. Which is a disservice to you. The mantra of any entrepreneur is to ‘Fail Fast’. You fail constantly, so that you can learn from your mistakes. You fail, and learn to pick yourself up. Twelve publishers told JK Rowling that her manuscript for Harry Potter was rubbish. She failed again and again, to finally make it.
And that’s the beauty of not knowing everything. You can’t know everything, and you will make mistakes. But if you create that mindset from a young age, you’ll be like ‘Ok I don’t know this, but I’ll figure it out’. You learn to be flexible and creative. Steve Jobs wasn’t an engineer, he was a marketing guy. But people still call him a genius, because he took the time to understand what an engineer did. You’re probably reading this on a device his company created.
So if you want to learn entrepreneurship, what will it teach you?
To ask questions and lead others.
To be creative and solve problems.
To make money and to save money.
To be a public speaker because you learn to sell.
To ask for help when you need it.
To learn from your mistakes and never give up.
People might tell you that you’re too young to think about starting your own business. Then when you get older, the same people will be after you to start it ASAP. People will tell you that Instagram influencers are entrepreneurs because they promote products. People say a lot of things. But being an entrepreneur means doing what you think works. Entrepreneurs see a problem and search for a solution. Maybe you want to solve the water crisis. Maybe you want to connect people across borders. Maybe you want solve global warming. Nothing is too big for an entrepreneur. If you have a dream, you work towards making it a reality.
And if you feel like dipping your toes in, join us for a week and challenge your assumptions about Entrepreneurship. Join our Ivy Early Entrepreneur Program.