How Can Young Startup Founders Make their Age & Inexperience an Asset not a Liability
This year I completed 5 years as a startup founder. I started up from my home first, then went on to create my company - Viralcurry, worked from an office, built new things, hired a full time team and faced every challenge possible. As any startup founder will tell you - These 5 years have not been easy. There have been the ups of the journey, but there also have been many many downs. Life is not always fair, and if you are in a startup - it mostly is not. As I complete 5 years in this journey, I share what I learnt on every step of it and how you can change your inexperience and age into an advantage instead of a disadvantage. Keep reading:
1. When someone asks you “How many years of experience do you have?” , wow them with your knowledge first and then tell the years.
During the time in 2012-2013 when I was in my very early 20s and just starting out, everyone asked me about my years of experience and how much work had I done before. All I did was first share all the knowledge I had and my story of struggle and taking risks. After I was done with wowing the client with all the knowledge and information, I told them I had 1 year of experience and was just 21 year old.
My age and inexperience suddenly became an advantage and almost every time I walked out with a cheque in my hand.
2. Prove yourself with the hard work - You can contribute more hours into work than any one older in age
Another great perk of being young and enthusiastic is that you can contribute more hours into work. You don’t have kids to go home to, you don’t have responsibilities on your shoulders. You can work more hours and prove yourself. This is the best time to learn on the job, work hard and gain reputation in the professional world. Hustle harder than you are willing to, because after some years you would want to but might not necessarily be able to.
3. Learn as fast and as much as you can
When you are young and just starting out, you must be willing to learn. You will be the fastest to learn and thus can stay ahead of others in your profession. If you meet any older startup founders, they would be very glad to do business with you. Speak to the founders at companies you pitch your business to. They are very likely to give you a chance because they know young and enthusiastic people are willing to learn very fast.
4. Take risks - Bigger than anyone older
When you are young, you can take more risks. You can quit your job more easily than someone with more experience. For example you are asked to quit your job when you are earning Rs. 25000/- per month Vs you are asked to quit your job when you are earning Rs. 1,00,000/- per month. When would it be easier to quit? Yes, when you were at 25000/-. If you take risks early in your life, you will have enough time to go back and make things right if you fail. You will have nothing to lose and that is the exact reason why you will be able to take risks that others cannot.
5. You can work in any situation, any office, any condition - Make advantage of it
At a young age, we all are used to of living in hostels, traveling in a bus and what not. As we grow older, we start seeking more comfort. Same happens when you are in business.
When you are younger, you are able to work from any condition, any situation. You can save money on office space by working from a basic infrastructure. You don’t have the qualms about comfort, health is on your side and you can pretty much sit anywhere, work from anywhere.
If you are young and starting out, do not have doubts about your capabilities or what people will think when they get to know your age. Use that as a weapon, not a weakness. Learn, hustle, acquire skills and make them your aid.