Two national radio programs recently featured Kauffman Foundation Vice President of Research & Policy Dane Stangler for his expertise on the relationship between age and entrepreneurship.
On The Innovation Hub: The New, Older Entrepreneurs
WGBH, the public broadcasting station in Boston, included Stangler on the national radio show "Innovation Hub" which spotlights new ideas and creative thinkers across a variety of fields. He presented information and insights about the growing number of entrepreneurs age 50 and older—both the challenges they face and the advantages they have. Read an excerpt of the accompanying article below.
Move over, Mark Zuckerberg. Although 23-year-old company founders make the news, the entrepreneurial spirit is alive and kicking among older Americans as well.
Instead of slowing down as they reach their 50s and 60s, an increasing number of baby boomers are identifying a need...and building a company around it.
Stangler attributes these growing numbers to several factors. In part, seniors faced the same issues as their younger counterparts during the recession: fewer full-time traditional jobs, and a need to think of more creative ways to bring in revenue. Plus, people are living longer—and staying healthier. At age 60, many people still have 25 good, productive years left.
Read the article on WGHB.org.
On Financial Myth Busting: Endangered Species: Young Entrepreneurs
Dawn Bennett, host of "Financial Myth Busting," a live weekly broadcast based out of Washington, D.C., interviewed Stangler on the benefits of young entrepreneurship, the current decline, and how to get things back on track. Read an excerpt of Dane's comments below.
There are both good and bad reasons for this broad declining trend. Bad reasons would be...rising student debt burden, so it's not as financially easy for young people to start a company.
Even if you're a few years out of college and you've already started a family, the recession took a major toll on everyone—but hit particularly hard on young households. So in past years where, for example, home equity served as a source of fee capital for a lot of entrepreneurs, that option just isn't there today for young households because they had such a hit.
There are also some (respectable) reasons we've seen this trend. One of them is that a lot more young people are going to school. This was part of the recession; the job market wasn't great, so a lot of people went back to school or enrolled in school...who wouldn't have otherwise. So that also has taken away from some of the business-creation activity—and that's not a bad thing.
Hear the interview on FinancialMythBusting.com.
On Feb. 11, 2015, the Kauffman Foundation's sixth annual State of Entrepreneurship address focuses on these two key demographic groups that are expected to play a leading role in the future of the U.S. economy. Visit www.kauffman.org/SOE2015 for more information and join the conversation at #SOE2015.