Parents everywhere are breathing a sigh of relief as the kids go back to school this week. The world has changed quite a bit since I was at school, but some things never change – my daughter has already lost her school tie after only one day back!
Thinking back to my own school days, I did learn a lot, but not all of it was in lessons. I’m not sure how much is taught these days about being entrepreneurial, but so much of what I know about running a successful business was learnt the hard way. No-one taught me anything in school about how to make money. I just learnt by doing it.
It started for me even as a teenager, where I saw an opportunity to make some money from the school tuck shop. People would queue up all break time just to buy their sweets. I used to sneak out of lessons early, get to the tuck shop first and buy as much as I could, then take it back to my own classroom and sell it for double the price. My class didn’t have to waste time queueing, I made money – everyone’s a winner!
That spirit of seizing an opportunity is what running a business is all about. You have to constantly look for ways to improve things. School IS important to learn the basics, but to succeed you have to be hungry to get the first hand experiences, and try new things. Taking a risk on an idea, and learning from your successes (or failures!) is something that I don’t think can ever really be fully taught in a classroom. The lessons stay with you much longer if you experience it first hand for yourself, like I had to.
It’s never too late to get that learning mindset back. Even if you were a total failure at school, half of the battle is having the right attitude, and a willingness to have a go. Learning to be resilient when things don’t go right, and having the determination to keep on finding ways to constantly improve is what a successful business is all about.
So if you reckon you’ve got the entrepreneurial spirit, and have a great idea for a business, get in touch. With the right experience and funding, it could be the start of something good!