THE BLOG

Lessons in Becoming a Young Entrepreneur: Learning How to Support Young Talent

07/02/2014 12:49 GMT | Updated 08/04/2014 10:59 BST

As a young female entrepreneur, meeting other like-minded individuals has become the weekly norm. I have been lucky enough to talk to some of the most inspiring young people in the UK, and understand the challenges and obstacles young people face when starting up a business. Most of these challenges revolve around confidence, a lack of knowledge of how to effectively execute an idea and to put it simply; a lack of motivation. Since the beginning of my first business startup, Support Young Talent, I have recognized some of these same challenges in myself but the key to overcoming these difficulties lies in getting the right advice from the right people, surrounding yourself with the right like-minded people and putting yourself in situations that inspire you.

As a young business owner, advice can be invaluable. I have therefore actively and continuously sought out older mentors to teach me about their industry first hand. Ultimately this means you meet a lot of people with a lot of advice to give, which may not always be accurate or right for you. I often found it hard to hold my ground in what I believed was right for the company, and I would scrutinize over the smallest decisions that in the long run would be meaningless, due to a passing whisper.

So how do you make the right choices in business when operating on a trial and error basis?

Firstly, before I even began the company I made sure that I did my research about the company vision. I covered questions such as: Who are we? What do we stand for? Why do we stand for it?

But how was I going to do it? Well this was a little more challenging. Advice from industry contacts of my own was more than daunting. Their professional stance and talk of no less than £1 million investment was a little unnerving at the age of 19. I felt pressured to meet expectations and create a business with no prior experience.

Well, here O2 Think Big and UnLtd were able to help. Both organisations have previously backed Support Young Talent, which helps young musicians with information, advice and exposure but now have teamed up. Financially, the organisations have made a huge difference but planning how to make the biggest impact with the given funding is where true sustainable success happens. With mentor support, business and strategy planning, a network full of young people to bounce off and networking events to meet new contacts and inspire you, the organisations are vital to bring out the confidence in young entrepreneurs. As a result, Support Young Talent has grown organically and so has my confidence in my own abilities. The funding and support has given me time to develop at a rate I have felt comfortable with, dealing with challenging my own confidence on my own terms and building a successful sustainable business.