Fear of failure may be deterring young people – and particularly young engineers – from starting their own businesses, according to research released last week.
The research conducted by the Royal Academy of Engineering Enterprise Hub, highlights that a fear of failure and lack of business skills are holding many back from starting their own firms.
A fear of business failure is significantly higher among young people according to the report.
More than two-fifths (42%) gave this as a reason for not turning an idea into a business, compared to just over a quarter (27%) of 45 to 54-year-olds.
The findings echo separate research from the Enterprise Hub that found that young engineers were especially fearful of failure; 56% cited this as one of the main reasons for them not starting a business.
The research also asked young engineers what they would find helpful in encouraging them to turn ideas into innovations. Two-fifths (41%) said they lacked key business skills, and a third (31%) highlighted a need for advice on protecting their ideas.
Young people are also much less likely than their older peers to say that persistence is important in turning an idea into a business success: 43% of those aged 45-54 and nearly half (49%) of over 55s believed this, compared to just 27% of young people.
Supporting young entrepreneurs
Since 2013 the Enterprise Hub has worked to discover, celebrate and support the country’s next generation of brilliant engineering entrepreneurs. One of the ways it does this is through the annual Launchpad competition.
Rowan Minkley, co-founder and CEO of Chip[s] Board, won this year’s award from the Royal Academy of Engineering Enterprise Hub this month.
The 23-year-old was chosen by a panel of experts and business leaders. Minkley’s innovation is a wood substitute made from industrial potato waste, designed to be an eco-friendly alternative to MDF.
He has received a £15,000 prize, as well access to training, mentoring, and a network of expert advisors necessary to enable him to further develop his innovation.