Apple. Google. Facebook. Starbucks. All of the iconic businesses we recognize today started as mere ideas. It’s the action you take with your initial idea that establishes you as an entrepreneur. The success of your vision comes from the right combination of confidence, versatility, and resilience paired with opportunity.
Today’s business world is ripe with young trailblazers breaking age barriers and establishing entrepreneurial careers after opening the door for opportunity when it knocked.
Just look at these inspiring teen entrepreneurs who are changing the face of business.
Arizona State University (ASU) recently hosted the 2018 ASU Innovation Open, which rewarded savvy young entrepreneurs with over $195,000 in prize money. The grand prize winner, Hoolest, is the brainchild of ASU student Nicholas Hool, who engineered a device to biomechanically reduce performance stress. He honed in on a problem (event-triggered anxiety) and used his personal talents and resources to create the solution. The concept was awarded $100,000 and massive exposure.
Think you have to wait until college to launch your dreams? Think again. CEOs whose age barely reaches double digits are successfully running full-fledged operations. And many of these teen entrepreneurs focus on a problem they need to be solved in order to improve their own quality of life.
New Yorker and avid lacrosse player Samantha Wolfe found that her ability to play was inhibited by cold winter months. With the help of her father, 17-year-old Wolfe created a heated lacrosse stick that is currently testing at the professional level. Her ingenuity landed her on TeenBusiness’ Top Twenty 2017 list.
Sometimes a business is founded solely for the betterment of society. Young social innovators are applying creative ideas to philanthropic missions worldwide.
Mexican teen Julian Rios Cantu nearly lost his mother to breast cancer when he was 13. Her diagnosis was the catalyst to Cantu’s product Eva, an auto-exploration bra that assists women in detecting early signs of breast cancer.
Twelve teenage girls united to engineer a solution for the homeless population near their high school. With no experience in coding or 3D printing, this all-girl team created a solar-powered tent that packs into a rolling backpack. Their determination even spawned the hashtag #wegetitdone.
If you are uncertain of a problem that needs solving, reflect on what makes you tick. What compels you? What activates your unique set of skills and talents? Erwin “Jimmy Burner” Portis Jr. was in third grade when he developed a love for fashion. Now 19 years old, he is living his dream as a fashion designer. Once you unlock your passions, the creative process unfolds and the reigns are yours to turn that passion into a tangible business.
Now, it’s your turn.
Whether you are solving a social issue, creating a product with a key consumer in mind, or evolving an outdated service to fit current trends in technology, now is the time to let your ideas take flight.
By embracing the entrepreneurial mindset in high school, you are opening the door to unlimited potential. Equipped with the right courses, you can approach entrepreneurship with a holistic understanding of the academic foundation as well as the practical application of the key principles of business.
And the business world is bursting with investors seeking out the next great concept. From startup accelerators to conventions and contests, you are one online search away from finding a hub of eager ears ready to listen to your vision. Capitalizing on resources like these exponentially increases your venture’s potential for success.
If you are ready to take on the rewarding challenge of a lifetime, the business world is there for the taking.