I belong to an entrepreneur’s group on Facebook. It’s mainly comprised of people who have become–or long to become–part of the free agent nation, a group of people who work on their own terms for themselves. Most of them rely on online work as a major part (if not all) of their business.
What surprised me about this group was the number of people who have not officially left the corporate job but plan to shortly; yet, many, many of them have no idea what kind of business they want to launch. They just know they want to do their own thing. Often they ask the rest of us what they should be doing. This is exactly what I thought of when I came across this stat:
According to America’s Small Business Development Center, almost half (49%) of Millennials intend to start their own business in the next 3 years.
Wow. Nearly half.
Things that Millennial Chamber Members Need
We’ve been talking about recruiting Millennial members out of the sheer size of their generation and the fact that it’s important to get the future involved in the organization. But now there’s another reason. These people want to be business owners. Here’s what they’ll need:
- Advice on how to legally start a business. This includes licenses for your city, municipality, registering a name, etc.
- Advice on how to get government work.
- Social media help for business. Yes, they’re digital natives but as we saw with the recent Harvard admission rescinding, they may not always know what’s appropriate to post for business.
- How to write a business plan.
- How to assess what will work in the market or how to identify their target demographic.
- Tax assistance. This is not something the chamber will help with directly but you know people. I have several Millennial friends who began successful freelance careers only to rejoin the corporate workforce after they got hit with a terrible tax bill that first year.
- Finding a business location.
- Financing. They know a lot about buzz words like angel investors and unicorns but the everyday financing may leave them confused.
- Business mentoring.
- Finding something they like and can be successful at.
Recruit Millennial Chamber Members Early
The last idea above may not be something everyone needs because many people go into a new business knowing exactly what they want to do. However, there are also people who desire to be business owners or entrepreneurs and aren’t sure what they should do (like the people in my group). Creating a business mentoring program or a “Discover the business in you” type offering may be a way to entice more Millennial chamber members.
Many business starting programs begin after the concept stage, but many of these young entrepreneurs may have difficulty getting to that point. They know they want to be business owners but need initial guidance on how to begin and what to pursue. Reach out to these people who are enamored of the idea of a business or entrepreneurialism and make their acquaintance early on for maximum benefit to both.
By Christine R. Green, FrankJKenny.com