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Entrepreneurship is an enticing concept. Being able to start your own company from the ground up, building something you are proud of, and then sharing it with the world. Plus, what’s better than being able to do all this in your twenties? Here’s a top ten list of some of the most successful young entrepreneurs in the U.K.
Before influencer became a staple of our lexicon, Ben Jefferies found a hole in how we market products to the masses. Realizing that ad blockers were becoming more prevalent, he needed a way to insert ads more consciously. By teaming up with these now influencers, he was able to start his own influencer marketing industry, bringing in six figure revenues to his company.
Seeing blank trucks while sitting in traffic, Ed Hollands got the idea to start DrivenMedia. DrivenMedia uses commercial trailers that travel cross country as moving advertisements. By charging £7,800 and VAT for 12 months, while only incurring £5,500 in production costs, he’s driving down the highway to success.
Using the slogan “chop, chat, chill”, Ifeyinwa Frederick built a restaurant business around bringing authentic Nigerian food and culture to London. This is not your local corner stop, however. With an online following of 7,000 fans and features in Elle and Time Out, Ifeyinwa Fredrick is cooking up a great future as a restaurateur.
Having started creating jewellery as a hobby, Jessica Rose was able to take her hobby and turn it into a full time career. Creating London Jewellery School, Rose offers classes and programmes for new comers to jewelling, and to also help draw in newcomers to her jewellery line. Having conquered such feats at these at a young age sure is a remarkable feat.
Christian invented University Cribs after growing up as a child bursting with entrepreneurial spirit. University Cribs is a platform designed to connect students to accommodation providers across the U.K., allowing students to find affordable housing. A simple yet effective solution to student housing, and one that might not be far off from your next big idea.
- Tom Honey, Founder of Stoned Pizza
After starting off as a small pizza pop up at the age of 16, as word of mouth and finances grew Tom Honey was able to create his pizza restaurant, Stoned Pizza. While also serving the classic pizzas, Stoned Pizza also offers seasonal and gourmet pizzas. With ambitious dreams of having fifty stores in ten years, lets hope Tom’s eyes aren’t bigger than his stomach.
Using cognitive science and artificial intelligence, Guy Riese’s UpLearn allows students and parents to receive phenomenal tutoring services across a variety of school subjects. Riese got the ideal when falling ill before his A-levels, learning about retrieval practice and spaced repetition to succeed with his studying. His platform has gathered over 12,720 students, a testament to its success.
After starting out sending his designs and drawings to factories in the U.K. at age 13, it was clear Josh had an entrepreneurial spirit. When he was 18, he created RPD International, a design and manufacturing firm. Today, it’s valued at over $5 miilion and has grown %450 year to year.
Peter has a familiar story of renting a flat. Frustrated that his landlord had tried to charge himself and his flatmates hundreds of pounds for no apparent reason, he looked to find a place online to vent, but couldn’t find any. This led to his creation of Movem, which allows renters to post reviews of their renting process. Currently, every university in the UK uses it. Although he dropped out of university to pursue Movem, he says there’s no looking back
Seeing the power that social media celebrities held over their fan bases and the growth of Snapchat, Timothy Armoo created Fanbytes. Fanbytes allows companies to reach out to large audiences by creating videos specifically for Snapchat. Boasting clients like Disney, GoPro, and FC Barcelona, it’s clear that his company is on a surefire path to success.
Looking across all the ages of these entrepreneurs, there’s no reason anyone can’t start at any age. Go out there, chase your dreams, and start building your business.
- Ideas without mechanisms
The thing that most companies dream of is to be like Google and innovate their way to success. But the problem is that not all organisations work on the same foundational superiority. Google allows its employees to innovate for about 20% of the total time that they work for. But the fact of the matter is that Google has mechanisms to take these ideas forward and make an actual implementable impact. Google translate for starters was a side project, which has now grown into a global phenomenon. Most companies ask their employees to replicate this, but the problem arises when the organisation doesn’t have any sort of mechanism to take it forward. In the end, you are left with a long list of possible innovations that never see the light of day.
- Constraints and creativity
The problem brews when people think that freeing people from constraints will make them innovative and entrepreneurial. But the fact of the matter is that, unless there is a problem to solve, there can’t be good ideas emerging. Constraints need to be in place to ensure that people are trying to solve a problem in an environment where it is implementable and not in one that is ideal in nature. With complete freedom, executives attain ideas that cannot be implemented due to its overly fragmented nature and one that was built for an entirely different environment than the one that they are currently in. So if you want your employees to innovate for the company and its growth, then giving them real-time constraints along with the problem can be a world of difference to the outcome.
- Playing it safe
You can’t have a culture that promotes risk-taking and one that undermines failure. What organisations fail to understand is that, by saying you are allowing risks; you are also turning around and saying that it is okay to fail. But executives then throw around the term risk-free quite callously, and this promotes employees to play it safe. Let’s get this straight, a company that is rooted in the stigma of failure is not going to attain innovative and entrepreneurial ideas because of the cloud that will appear over a person’s head, if he or she were to fail at something that others would consider as risky. The other important thing to consider is that initial risks in innovation need to be understood and not undermined because you have a higher chance of making it work if you allow organic growth.
A common myth is that people believe entrepreneurs love taking risks and that is far from the truth than anything else. Entrepreneurs don’t take any more risks than a normal businessman would because he or she knows that a high-risk can either be a great idea or one that could cost them a lot as a result.
At the end of the day being an entrepreneur is someone who wants to take a challenge and influence the growth and financial capability of that challenge. You can be an entirely cautious person and still be an entrepreneur. The other fascinating aspect is that entrepreneurs understand that they don’t have the backing of corporate vaults to sustain them or see them ride a loss. So a good entrepreneur would assess all the possible outcomes before taking a risk. There is no point going down a road unless you are ready for the challenges that may arise as a result of your decision. The key is to know which business deals to take and which ones to avoid and that can only be learnt through experience. So entrepreneurs would end up playing it safe for a considerable amount of time, just like their traditional counterparts.
- University Entrepreneurship
There is this outlandish myth that entrepreneurship is an art and that not everyone can become like Picasso. Some people take it up a notch and say that entrepreneurs are born and not made. All that is just a horde of bullshit. Entrepreneurship is something that you can learn and change about yourself to stand apart in a crowd that says that entrepreneurship is a silver spoon that one is born with. If anything, it is quite the opposite of what these people believe; entrepreneurs need a substantial amount of experience in the field of business, innovation and idea generation to take things forward. But the fact of the matter is that people associate one-time wonders who made it big with one day to the broad spectrum of entrepreneurs. We as a society need to understand that entrepreneurship is something that we see every day; it is the ability to create impact, take up a challenge, influence growth and find a solution that no one knew existed. And who are we to say that an experienced individual who studied the nuances of business, innovation and entrepreneurial skills cannot achieve those very things.
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