Student entrepreneurialism is on the rise, with an increasing number of young minds taking control of their dreams and beginning a business while studying at University. Inspired by the many success stories of previous students – perhaps none more famous than that of Mark Zuckerberg and his start-up turned billion-dollar business Facebook – many students are developing their ideas during University instead of waiting until they graduate.
Starting a business as an undergrad is more valuable than you might imagine. Money, of course, is a huge motivator, but there are many non-monetary benefits of becoming a young entrepreneur.
Even if your idea doesn’t develop into a substantial national business, the things you learn along the way are, indisputably, worth much more than a large profit.
Put your studies into practice
Are you a business student or taking modules in marketing or project management? If not, perhaps you’ve discovered a new passion at University which you believe could turn into a feasible business?
Your studies and activities at University help to prepare you for the world of work, but when you’re a start-up founder you’ll also find that your learning is suddenly heightened by putting your studies into practice.
Many people worry that their grades will suffer when they split their time between studying and running a business. It is definitely something to consider, but managing a business can enhance your University learning too.
Even if you’re not studying a subject directly related to business, you acquire valuable skills that can be transferred to your studies. Time management, problem solving and even leadership skills develop from being your own boss – not to mention your idea will also spark a web of creativity within your mind.
Learn skills that last a lifetime
Entrepreneurs are many things. As well as being your own boss, you become your own accountant, marketing team, PR department and much more. The huge variety of skills you collect from running a business are highly valuable and all are abilities you will have for life. They also look really impressive on your CV!
Many graduates leave University with very little real-life experience. With a CV full of sought-after skills, you’ll certainly have an edge on other candidates. Employers are demanding more and more from applicants and even though an intuitive and intelligent mind is highly impressive, they love to see you take an idea and put it into action.
Young entrepreneurs show passion, commitment and determination, and your business will be an incredible thing to discuss in an interview – if you need to look for employment, that is!
If your business isn’t a huge success, don’t pretend it didn’t happen. Treat it as a learning curve, identify any mistakes and discuss everything you’ve gained from the experience.
Develop valuable relationships
Networking is an important part of any business and University is an excellent place to start developing relationships. Join societies to find like-minded, creative people, enquire at your career’s centre to see if your University can put you in touch with any local businesses, and make sure you speak to professors about your business ideas. University really is a brilliant gateway into the business community.
Starting your own business can seem daunting, but there really isn’t a better time to do it. With endless access to textbooks, knowledgeable professors and the opportunity to develop skills that will give you the edge over other graduates, your own business will be worth so much more to you than just money. Gather up your ideas, chase your dreams and don’t be afraid to take the next step before starting your own business.