Is This the Time for Young Entrepreneurs to Sink or Swim?

by / ⠀Startup Advice / August 24, 2011

As small business owners continue to wonder just where the American economy is going, young entrepreneurs are likely even more fraught with concerns, as they look to make sure their businesses or soon-to-be opening companies set sail in calmer waters.

The young entrepreneur in all likelihood doesn’t have the business savvy of an older business owner who has been through financial hardships, having to do whatever it takes to keep the business afloat. For the younger business owner, times like this can lead them to question why they went into business for themselves in the first place.

As a young entrepreneur, set sail on several trains of thought:

  • Game plan – If you’re lucky, lots of opportunities will come your way, but which ones are the right ones? It is important as a younger entrepreneur to determine which opportunities are potentially valuable to you as a business owner and which ones will lead you spinning your wheels. Zero in on what will be productive and what may end up being a wild goose chase;
  • Watch your wallet – How many times have you seen a young entrepreneur get in over their head financially and end up paying for it in more ways than one? While you may want to flaunt the fact that you’re a new entrepreneur at first, keep it simple. Spend a minimum on essentials, pass on the things that can wait, and budget, budget, budget. Make sure you keep track of your expenses, as not doing so can lead to some holes in your cash flow;
  • Sleep, what’s that? – As any business owner can tell you, there are many sleepless nights. Worrying about employees, cash, the economy, creating new streams of revenue are just some of the issues you will be dealing with. Expect to say goodbye to the 40-hour work week, unless until you’re settled in;
  • Give respect to earn respect – Too many get the big head syndrome when they start a business. The end result is they have employee quitting or having to be fired because they’re just not into working with you. From your top salesperson down to the administrative assistant, treat your employees with respect. While they need to support themselves and their careers, your employees are here to help your company grow, so don’t scare them off by being a tyrant;
  • See the writing on the wall – While you never hope to see it, recognize the writing on the wall if your business isn’t cutting it. A large percentage of small businesses fail in their first five years for a variety of reasons. In the event your business is taking on water and there is not a rescue vessel in sight, don’t be stupid and go down with the ship. If your business isn’t cutting it, put plan B into effect – Live to fight another day;
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While the economy is teetering on another possible recession, remember that this can also be a great time to open up a new small business.

With the right planning, investment and people around you, your dream of becoming a small entrepreneur can become a reality.

Are you up to the challenge?

Dave Thomas is an expert writer on items like telemarketing and is based in San Diego, California. He writes extensively for an online resource, providing expert advice on telemarketing decisions for small business owners and entrepreneurs at Resource Nation.

About The Author

Matt Wilson

Matt Wilson is Co-Founder of Under30Experiences, a travel company for young people ages 21-35. He is the original Co-founder of Under30CEO (Acquired 2016). Matt is the Host of the Live Different Podcast and has 50+ Five Star iTunes Ratings on Health, Fitness, Business and Travel. He brings a unique, uncensored approach to his interviews and writing. His work is published on, Forbes, Inc. Magazine, Huffington Post, Reuters, and many others. Matt hosts yoga and fitness retreats in his free time and buys all his food from an organic farm in the jungle of Costa Rica where he lives. He is a shareholder of the Green Bay Packers.