May 31, 2012 by Guest Contributor
Callum Laing, serial entrepreneur and CEO of Fitness-Buffet, argues that articles like this recent Forbes piece Why Entrepreneurs Will Save The World reflect an unhealthy preoccupation with entrepreneurship and adds one item too many to an already busy-to-do list.
Years ago, I wrote an article for a newspaper denouncing the media’s growing obsession with entrepreneurs as the new rock stars. It was during a downturn and I pointed to the army of recently laid-off people who, unable to find jobs, re-branded themselves first as ‘consultants’ and then when that didn’t work as either ‘lifestyle coaches’ or ‘entrepreneurs’.
Inspired by whoever was on the cover of Forbes magazine, they would ‘find their passion’ and throw themselves headlong into building a business with the charming naivety and enthusiasm only a fresh entrepreneur can muster.
Within 12-18 months, however, most of them had burnt through their lifetime’s savings, often taking on personal debt, alienated their friends and family by trying to sell to or borrow from them, and closed down their businesses. They then return, tails between their legs, to the workforce to lick their wounds.
Perhaps those were the lucky ones. The rest of us stumbled on. Read more