There’s certainly no shortage of successful young entrepreneurs in business today. We hear daily of fast growing startups from New York City to Silicon Valley, headed by CEOs such as Mark Zuckerberg, Andrew Mason and Tim O’Shaughnessy. These creative minds have demonstrated the power of youthful tenacity and innovation, combined with a sharp eye for business.
Yet, in 2010, entrepreneurs aged 35 to 54 were responsible for over 50 percent of total new entrepreneurship activity in the U.S, according to the . Individuals aged 55 to 64 also made their mark, representing 22.9 percent of new entrepreneurs in 2010, compared to 14.5 percent in 1996.
With their irreplaceable advantage of experience, perhaps those who are older and wiser have learned a few valuable lessons during the course of their careers. Having started my first venture at the age of 28, followed by two others in the last 20 years, my experience has taught me the following crucial lessons:
- Follow-through is essential
- Build an enthusiastic and passionate team
- Balance is critical
- It pays to think like an investor
- Listen and learn