With tech-savvy skills honed after growing up in the digital age, an entrepreneurial spirit, and a global perspective on interactions, millennials have a remarkable set of skills that make them ideal candidates to run their own businesses. Given the right support and insights, millennials can bring their technical skills to bear on a range of businesses that will drive innovation across industries. As seen in Small Business Tips: 20 Things Every New Owner Should Know, having the right perspectives, plans, and vision will help millennials reach new heights as business owners.
1. Common Values, Difference in Passion
A recent study by Wells Fargo showed that millennial small business owners share many traits with older entrepreneurs.
- Both groups sought flexibility in when, where, and how they work (73 percent for millennials, 75 percent for others).
- Both groups had had difficulty in finding a job (25 percent for millennials versus 18 percent for others) or had been laid off (19 percent for each group).
- Both groups are wary of taking on business debt (75 percent for millennials compared to 78 percent for others).
Where millennials stand out is passion. Fifty-nine percent want to be passionate about their work, compared to just 51 percent of their older counterparts. This passion and belief in the impact of their businesses will help millennials go a long way.
2. Focus On the Long Haul
Millennials need to understand that success does not come overnight. It still takes hard work, dedication, and a lot of work in order to thrive and drive great outcomes. Entrepreneurship is rarely about instant gratification; rather, it is about looking ahead while still keeping a steady hand on the here and now.
3. Optimism Pays Off
A study reported in Inc. magazine shows that the millennial generation is generally accentuating the positive. The entrepreneurs surveyed were optimistic about the economy and their businesses, with 57 percent reporting a loyal customer base, 49 percent cautiously optimistic about their business’ long-term outlook, and 31 percent reporting increased profits.
4. Help Is a Strength
Millennial entrepreneurs have probably been doing group projects since they were in middle school. That approach is one to keep in mind. Entrepreneurs of any age cannot do it alone.
Millennials should rely on their networks of classmates, mentors, friends, former co-workers, and other entrepreneurs for guidance, insights, perspective, and talent.
5. Technology Is an Asset
New technologies are allowing small businesses owned by millennials to innovate scale in dramatic ways. Here are a couple of examples. The Internet of Things allows for connected devices to drive insights and data via embedded sensors, geolocation tools, storage and wireless capability. The cloud gives new companies the flexibility to store data and applications in a virtual platform that does not require expensive investments.
6. Demand Still Drives Growth
In order to be successful, millennial small business owners need to determine if the demand is there for the products or services being sold. Without a clear understanding of markets and customer interest, millennial small business owners may be spinning their wheels and not driving customer growth.
7. Access to Capital Is a Challenge
Access to traditional capital from lenders continues to be a challenge for many millennial small business owners. At Benetrends, we help small business owners combat tight capital markets. Benetrends’ innovative funding model leverages existing 401(k) or IRA funds to provide penalty-free access to capital fast. For millennials who may not have built up a large balance in a 401(k), Benetrends offers other funding options for consideration.
With Benetrends as a partner dedicated to your business success, your company can gain access to small business funding and support services that lead drive business growth. To learn more about how Benetrends can help your small business grow, schedule a consultation.