Young, Smart, Qualified, Unemployed? Help Is On the Way! : Under30CEO Young, Smart, Qualified, Unemployed? Help Is On the Way! : Under30CEO
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Young, Smart, Qualified, Unemployed? Help Is On the Way!

| February 21, 2011 | 10 Comments

young entrepreneur councilBy now you or someone you know has probably been hit with the national unemployment crisis. College diplomas and the skills developed through internships and past jobs no longer guarantee a job tomorrow. For this reason many young people have turned to starting their own business as a way to secure their future. This is what Scott Gerber, founder of the Young Entrepreneur Council, believes will help bring back the economy with his mantra “You need to create a job to keep a job.”

Gerber wants everyone to realize that starting a business is a viable alternative to getting a job. He has a simple approach “Identify and provide a service people need and will pay for”.  While no one is saying it is easy, starting a business needs to better recognized as an alternative to the traditional career path.

The Young Entrepreneur Council was created in 2010 to bring together successful young entrepreneurs to help mentor other young people. The council and the content it creates to help answer questions from aspiring entrepreneurs has been featured in places like The Wall Street Journal, Mashable, Entrepreneur, Huffington Post and AMEX Open Forum.

This month, to gauge the needs–and goals–of his unemployed and underemployed peers, Gerber partnered with Buzz Marketing Group, directed by YEC member Tina Wells, to conduct a Youth Entrepreneurship Survey, presented by LegalZoom.com. Of the 1,632 respondents ages 16-39 from across the country, 63% are college graduates. The result:

  • 18% of the respondents are unemployed; 24% hold part-time jobs: only 52% currently work full time.
  • 27% of respondents are self-employed; 21% of respondents started a business as a result of being unemployed – 52% said they didn’t have enough resources and 24% didn’t have enough government or financial support to do so.
  • 79% of survey respondents have an interest in entrepreneurship.
  • More than 35% of respondents with jobs started their own “side-business” to supplement their income – 18% plan to quit their full-time jobs this year to pursue entrepreneurship.
  • 89% believe entrepreneurial education is imperative today, given the new economy and job market, but 73% were not offered classes on entrepreneurship in college. Of those who were offered such training, 70% felt the classes were ineffective in giving them the skills needed to start a business.
  • 89% of respondents who are self-employed don’t feel they have enough support from the government – 67% of self-employed respondents don’t feel that they have enough financial support from banks.
  • 69% of respondents would like to work for an entrepreneur.

It is clear that young people are interested in entrepreneurship and most importantly are interested in more educational offerings on the topic.  Today’s education system, while improving, is still not caught up to the interest level of starting a business and entrepreneurship education. For this reason things like the Young Entrepreneur Council are stepping in to try and fill some of the gaps.

The full survey results were recently announced at the first annual Future of Entrepreneurship Education Summit,  an event that includes many of the nation’s top leaders in entrepreneurship education and philanthropy.

For more information about the YEC, or to apply to become a Council member, visit http://youngentrepreneurcouncil.com/.

Some questions for you to answer in the comments!!!

1. Did your school have entrepreneurship education offerings?

2. Do you think the education system and/or the government will ever catch up with the interest in entrepreneurship or will more things like the YEC develop to fill in the gaps?

3. Have you or do you know someone who started a business out of necessity because they could not find a job?

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  • http://www.entrepreneurialwoman.ca Cathy Watters

    I think the real question, re: #3 is not “Do you know someone who started a biz out of necessity because they could not “FIND” a job but rather, FIND A SATISFYING or VIABLE JOB. I believe that many people who have started businesses COULD have found work somewhere, if they were willing to work for minimum wage with no prospects of a better financial future; but would rather take their chances with starting their own business because they can have more control over whether the job is satisfying, and there is the potential of it eventually being better, financially.

  • http://twitter.com/yoscissortail Scissortail Creative

    Sounds like a great program – totally applying!

  • http://twitter.com/RachRodgersEsq Rachel Rodgers

    1. No
    2. Hopefully.
    3. Yes.

  • http://twitter.com/Curt_Szajkovics Curtis Szajkovics

    1) Yes, in fact I took the course last year. However it was severely lacking. The course focused on business plans what goes into one. But at the same time the teacher said that the business plan wasn’t everything. The focus of the course was that if you could write a business plan, you could get funding, which we all know is not always the case. I think it could have benefited from focusing more on boot-strapping, and the technical skills needed to start a business. By the end of the class I told my friends in the class that if they ever wanted to start a business later and needed help to call me and I would help them because so much was not taught in the course.

    2) I would hope so but with how slow established systems change it is hard to say.

    3) Indeed, my dad dropped out of college 30 years ago, worked for a few years and helped start a business. Recently he found himself out of work thanks to the recession. After a year or so of job searching and not finding anything, my mom started a similar business that turned into a family affair and we have been having a great time branding and launching the business.

  • http://www.corporateladder101.com Charlie

    Hey guys…great article. I’ve written a book called, “Corporate Ladder 101: How to Excel as a New Business Professional.” Even though the focus of the book is on getting ahead in the corporate world, the concepts work equally as well for anyone who needs to learn the soft-skills required to get ahead in the wonderful world of business. Visit the website at http://www.corporateladder101.com to read a few sample chapters and find out more. Also, for you young CEOs, I am available for speaking, mentoring, corporate orientation, etc. Just let me know. Thanks. Charlie

  • http://www.kunbrelifecoaching.com/blog Brett Kunsch

    1. Not specifically entrepreneurship, just old-hat business.

    2. I do hope more programs will sprout up, but I also think that entrepreneurship is something that’s hard to really institutionalize (nor do I believe we’d want it to be that way). YEC and Under30CEO are awesome advisory groups, and I do believe they will join a larger network of groups and individuals willing to educate entrepreneur-hopefuls in the years to come. I hope that young entrepreneurs do gain more access to the capital and support they need to give their businesses the wings they need to take flight.

    3. Ironically, I was let go from a federal government staff position at US Congress (yes the same congress trying to promote job growth). So I took the entrepreneur’s path because A) I’ve always been of that mindset and B) I needed to create a job that was not contingent upon the whims of an (incompetent) employer.

    Can’t wait to see all of the brilliant things YEC and Under30 will churn out! My one hope is that the demand for entrepreneurial support is not met by predatory financial institutions or “helpers.” But I have faith that entrepreneurs have a good BS-meter pre-installed and won’t let that stand!

  • http://www.kunbrelifecoaching.com/blog Brett Kunsch

    1. Not specifically entrepreneurship, just old-hat business.

    2. I do hope more programs will sprout up, but I also think that entrepreneurship is something that’s hard to really institutionalize (nor do I believe we’d want it to be that way). YEC and Under30CEO are awesome advisory groups, and I do believe they will join a larger network of groups and individuals willing to educate entrepreneur-hopefuls in the years to come. I hope that young entrepreneurs do gain more access to the capital and support they need to give their businesses the wings they need to take flight.

    3. Ironically, I was let go from a federal government staff position at US Congress (yes the same congress trying to promote job growth). So I took the entrepreneur’s path because A) I’ve always been of that mindset and B) I needed to create a job that was not contingent upon the whims of an (incompetent) employer.

    Can’t wait to see all of the brilliant things YEC and Under30 will churn out! My one hope is that the demand for entrepreneurial support is not met by predatory financial institutions or “helpers.” But I have faith that entrepreneurs have a good BS-meter pre-installed and won’t let that stand!

  • http://Under30CEO.com Jared O’Toole

    Great point Cathy. I agree that most people can find a job but it really may not be doing something you have any interest in or as any long-term potential. In these cases starting a business is a great option to try a different path that you control!

  • http://Under30CEO.com Jared O’Toole

    Thanks for the comment. I see that a lot in schools. It’s all about the business plan and if you can write a great plan everything else will seemingly workout. Which we know isn’t the case. I would also like to start seeing more investment made on learning how to bootstrap and teaching students about the tools and resources out there to help you that are cost effective…take the approach that none of them will end up with millions in funding.