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Business Start Up Corner - What Is A Good Age To Start A Business?

Online and digital marketing has changed the rules of business. The gap between knowledge and experience has narrowed and more people are starting their business in their late teens and early twenties. When it comes to entrepreneurship there are fewer obstacles but, is there an ideal age to start a business?

Clearly, there are pros and cons for both young and old entrepreneurs but the most important factor will always be the quality of your idea, concept, product or service. You’ll need to understand the risks, be prepared to take advice and have patience. While the young, technologically savvy entrepreneur may have the skills and ideas, you can’t put an old head on young shoulders. There’s also an adage, you can’t teach an old dog new tricks. There are plenty of successful start-up entrepreneurs both young and old and age is certainly not a barrier to entry.

So, what are the advantages and disadvantages of being a Young Entrepreneur?

Advantages:

  • Firstly, your perception of risk is very different at age 20 compared to age 30, 40 or 50.
  • Fewer obligations – issues like supporting a family, a mortgage and car repayments can make older people less likely to take on risk. The young have fewer responsibilities and recover better from a financial setback.
  • Familiarity with technology – nothing about technology will phase a younger entrepreneur who is always looking to work smarter not harder and use business automation tools.
  • Irrespective of age, business failure is a fact of life. There have been some spectacular failures but young entrepreneurs have time on their side.

Disadvantages:

  • Younger entrepreneurs are often not taken seriously. Online businesses with a degree of anonymity will work but eventually clients and customers will find out the age of the business owner.
  • You can’t buy experience and there is no text book on starting or running a business. If you don’t have that experience, surround yourself with people that do and get advice from the experts.

Mature Entrepreneurs

The mature age entrepreneur will probably embark on a new business venture in response to something as simple as not wanting to be told what to do anymore. They may have been retrenched or just want to get off the nine to five ‘treadmill’. They are generally more financially secure so the pressure isn’t as high but they still need to have the entrepreneurial essentials of marketing, financial and business skills. A number of mature age business owners didn’t learn these skills as employees.

Advantages:

  • More likely to obtain finance – they generally have more capital backing plus bricks and mortar security.
  • Family pressure – they may have already raised their family and have the time and money to indulge in their passion.
  • Versatility – previous life and work experience can provide the skills to capitalise on business opportunities.

Disadvantages:

  • Risk – no matter what your age, if your business fails it may well be the family home on the line. More assets or a large superannuation balance might mean you can purchase a larger business with more money at risk.
  • Salary Surrender – many older entrepreneurs discover that giving up a relatively high salary is more difficult than they first thought. The business start-up phase can produce losses and be physically and mentally testing.

The moral of the story is age is irrelevant. Both young and old bring different skills to the table and if you have the idea and the business plan to take to the market, then follow your passion. Planning is the key and talk to us today about your business idea and tap into our range of business start-up tools and experience.


Click HERE to download the full edition of The Business Accelerator Magazine for  December 2014.

Other articles in this edition: 

IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER:This newsletter is issued as a guide to clients and for their private information. This newsletter does not constitute advice. Clients should not act solely on the basis of the material contained in this newsletter. Items herein are general comments only and do not convey advice per se. Also changes in legislation may occur quickly. We therefore recommend that our formal advice be sought before acting in any of these areas.


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