Written by Jessica Nathania
In recent times, there has been a lot of media focus on young local entrepreneurs. Whether it is running a handmade slime business or creating a safe and inclusive social app for the LGBTQ+ community, these innovative student entrepreneurs show that they have what it takes to be successful.
With over 50,000 startups and 100 incubators, accelerators and venture builders, Singapore is internationally known as an entrepreneurial hub. If you’re still unsure whether you would like to start your own business, here are 4 benefits of being a student entrepreneur:
1. Work on a business that aligns with your goals
Student entrepreneurs usually start their business as a passion project. Oftentimes, business ideas come about when individuals are bothered by an issue that they and many others face which has not been addressed yet. In an attempt to solve the problem, they come up with an innovative solution and figure a way to turn it into a sustainable business model. For instance, Foreword Coffee, a local social enterprise, was founded by two young Singaporeans who wanted to provide employment opportunities to individuals with special needs by training them as service crew.
2. Network with industry leaders and meet like-minded individuals
As the start-up scene in Singapore continues to grow, the government recognises the importance of supporting entrepreneurial ventures by offering grant schemes like the Startup SG Founder grant of $50,000. Incubator and accelerator programmes that offer mentorship assistance to aspiring entrepreneurs have also become more popular in recent times.
Mentorship programmes allow student entrepreneurs to network with industry leaders and meet like-minded individuals while receiving more support to run their businesses. There are many mentorship resources out there, including the Startup SG Founder scheme, the ACE Mentorship Programme, Youth Business Singapore (YBS), Edudot, and more.
3. Gain practical workforce skills
As start-up culture is known to be fast-paced and dynamic, most founders take on several hats when overseeing their business. While building their start-up, some common practical skills gained include business strategy, branding & marketing, sales pitching, and budget planning. It can be said that working at a start-up, let alone running one, offers a work experience unlike any other. Although challenging, most student entrepreneurs find the work extremely rewarding.
4. Develop one’s leadership potential
When a start-up expands its team, founders are required to take on a leadership role. Managing a team well plays a crucial part in ensuring that operations run smoothly. As important as it is for founders to onboard suitable team members, it is also crucial that the team has a well-thought out business plan for them to head in the right direction. Even in times of difficulty, start-up founders are required to be resilient and learn to adapt to different circumstances. After all, “a team is a reflection of its leadership”.