An entrepreneur is someone who organizes and operates a business venture and assumes much of the associated risk. By extension, a student entrepreneur is that individual that combines his academic work with some business or business-oriented ventures. At this point, I’m quite certain you must be thinking that meddling academic activities with business or some other activities will hamper ones academic pursuit. Well, wait till I unconvince you.
Being a student entrepreneur helps you to develop astute time management skills. This will make the little time you have for your venture and academics very productive. It also keeps you away from unnecessary distractions (if you know what I mean) and helps you build yourself while yet a student.
2.PEOPLE MANAGEMENT SKILLS
Whoever told you you don’t need skills to handle people? Believe me, the ability to handle people and make negotiations is a skill which anyone can develop—be you an extrovert or introvert. I used to be much of an introvert myself (which is awesome) but believe making my first venture as a student opened me to a whole new world. It has given me the opportunity to practice principles I have learnt from Dale Carnegie’s How to win friend s and influence people. The change has been so radical that I can hardly tell these days if I am an extrovert or introvert.
I know you might want to argue with me on this one, but the truth is a student entrepreneur makes you have less time and based on research; people who have less time are more likely to make a more productive use of it. Let’s face it, even if you had 24 hours to yourself, there is no way you can se the whole of it for reading. So, why not devote a few of these hours to some other productive activity.
Its one thing to know how to spend money and it’s another thing to know how to earn it. A lot of our knowledge of money right from childhood has been centered on consumerism; we are sent on errands to purchase a whole lot of stuff so when we grow up and see money the first thing that comes to our mind is—how do I spend it? Never taught of it that way right? Well now you have.
Being a student entrepreneur gives you a glimpse of how money is earned and will help you develop a viable savings, investment and spending culture.
Someone rightly said, show me your friend s and I will tell you who you are. When you become a student entrepreneur, consciously or subconsciously you begin to build yourself an amazing range of clientele –and who knows, it might lead to some bigger ventures in the future.
Let’s face it, job opportunities in Nigeria and most part of Africa today are very scarce and even the available few require someone with “experience.” So, why waste your time and talent when you can utilize it for yourself and for humanity. Give yourself the experience you need. The last time I checked, self employment was still employment no matter the pay.
Sure! To be an entrepreneur of what ever sort, you need to be a decision maker . That in itself is a great attribute—howbeit, anybody can develop it! However, one important question to ask yourself is, are you looking to develop this attribute years after graduation when responsibility and desperation is already telling on you? Or better still as a young student when you have all the freedom, space and time in the world.
8.YOU GET TO LEARN FROM MENTORS
Of course! By being an entrepreneur, it means you have indirectly signed up to be a perpetual learner and voracious reader. What do you think entrepreneurs like Richard Branson, Aliko Dangote, Christopher Felix, Mark Zuckerberg, Adams Taimako ,Abdulsamad Lawan and Bill Gates spend their time doing? They spend it reading, researching and looking for ways to develop new ideas and pioneer new innovations. Lest I forget, entrepreneurs like Linda Ikeji, Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, Tara Durotoye to mention but a few all started their ventures while as students—believe me, it’s the in-thing!
Youth entrepreneurship is so important that former British prime minister had this to say;
“Entrepreneurship will become a core skill which all young people will need to exploit the opportunities emerging from science and technology, culture and communications.”
You can also include other suggestions on how you think student/youth entrepreneurship can better the lot of Nigerian and African youths. Don’t forget to share with friends and loved ones.