Youth unemployment in South Africa is high. It is not just a matter of number crunching, but something that we see in our communities. Idle youth and the constant strikes for more jobs and opportunities speak to this end.
Teen entrepreneurship is one way of standing up against youth unemployment. It boosts confidence, promotes independence and affords our youth a shot at contributing positively to the nation’s economy. Yet, this is not done without challenges, but rather in the midst of them.
If you are one of those preparing to step out to make your mark as a young entrepreneur, here are five barriers to teen entrepreneurship that are not insurmountable, but you would do well to take heed of in Mzansi (South Africa).
Many schools do not have the adequate facilities and resources to really delve into entrepreneurial education and/or subjects at school levels.
A High School Entrepreneurs Society is an inspiring platform for young entrepreneurs – it’s never too late to get your school involved.
- Lack of communal involvement and sponsorship
Activities such as “Market Days” often do not get the attention and sponsorship from local businesses that they rightfully deserve.
Do it yourself – watch out for workshops and networking groups such as the “Awaken the Giant in You” breakfast series where you can meet up with other young entrepreneurs for tips and advice.
Funding remains a big challenge, particularly for young entrepreneurs who have ideas, passion, but lack the resources to kick-start their dreams. Those dreams can become reality when you turn to crowdfunding and angel investors. Never give up hope.
- Risk aversion
As South Africans we have a tendency to opt for international products, shops, designers and brands rather than supporting our own Proudly South African household names.
That’s not to say that your idea won’t be a success in SA. Since the launch of the Proudly South African campaign in 2001, South Africans have become increasingly more aware of the importance of buying local.
- Red tape
At times policy and regulations along with all the red tape that must be fulfilled in order for an entrepreneur to grow can be overwhelming and downright discouraging to aspiring entrepreneurs.
Adopt our own policies. Believe that ‘nothing is impossible’ and with determination you can find a way through anything if you set your heart on doing it.
Being part of the High School Entrepreneurs Society can make a big difference to taking on these barriers, open you up to a whole new world, and give you networking opportunities with like-minded entrepreneurs and mentors. There’s really no need to go at it alone.
You can learn from mentors with proven records of excellence and be empowered to take your startup to even greater heights. To find out more about the High School Entrepreneurs Society and how to join in, click here.