With A-level and GCSE results recently published and a sixth of young people aged 16-24 years classed as NEET (not in education, employment or training), a study by PC World Business found that nearly half of young people questioned are aiming to set up on their own in the next two years with 19 per cent looking to set up their business in the next six months.
Celebrity business programmes, such as The Apprentice and Dragon’s Den, are influencing this group of young business stars, with nearly half claiming they are more aware of entrepreneurial career options after watching business TV programmes like Dragons’ Den and The Apprentice.
To celebrate this growing trend, PC World Business is launching a competition to find Britain’s best ‘Generation Y Not?’ entrepreneurs, rewarding those with the best business ideas as well as those who use technology in innovative ways.
The competition is one of the first in the UK to ask entrants to Tweet their business plan in 140 characters or less to @Gen_Y_Not
The competition which opened this week, to coincide with the start of the school term, aims to find five finalists who will be judged by a panel of the UK’s most successful entrepreneurs including Jamie Murray Wells, who founded Glasses Direct while at university and Oliver Bridge, who founded Bigger Feet when he was 15 years old.
Prizes include the latest IT kit, free membership to one of The Office Group’s stylish office spaces and exclusive tailor-made mentoring sessions with Jamie Murray Wells, business experts from Dixons Retail, parent company of PC World Business, and M&C Saatchi PR.
The competition closes on 14 October 2011 and judges will be looking for entrepreneurs with a great business idea, have demonstrated an innovative use of technology and have drive, passion and vision to realise their goals.
Phil Birbeck, managing director, PC World Business said: “By launching the Generation Y Not? competition, we are demonstrating our commitment to helping young business people realise their potential, supporting them through technology to set-up their business and celebrating the best of the UK’s young business talent. It is vital that any young entrepreneur gets the right advice first time round, as they can save time and money by ensuring they get the right IT solutions for their business at the outset.”
Barriers to setting up a business
Even though more young people are looking to start a business, the research found that there are barriers to setting up on your own.
When asked what is stopping them from setting up their own business, over 40 per cent claimed lack of funding was the biggest hurdle with nearly 30 per cent saying that they did not know where to start.
However, they were aware of the resources available to help them with their business, with 40 per cent saying they would use the internet for advice, followed closely by looking to their mum and dad for guidance.
Jamie Murray Wells, Generation Y Not? judge said: “As someone who started a business while at university, I am a big believer in helping those people with the drive, knowledge and business ideas to set up on their own. It is hard work and you need a lot of energy, but competitions like this one can give your business a real kick start. They also provide invaluable advice and support on the things that help you make your business successful, such as technology, to help you on your way.”