5 Benefits of Teaching Youth about Entrepreneurship by Nadia Ladak

In high school, many students are navigating tough decisions about their careers, which university to go to, and their overall future. With the increased focus on technology and startups, hundreds of new careers are becoming available every year that many students do not know about.

I was one of those students. Growing up, I didn’t even realize that entrepreneurship could be a viable career path. I came from an immigrant family whose only wish was for me to get a stable corporate career. So I followed their wish. I went to the Ivey Business School at Western, I landed a job in management consulting at KPMG, and it felt like I was doing everything right. However, later, I learned about entrepreneurship and how it could be used as a tool to solve problems and create change. I was always someone who believed in creating impact and it seemed that entrepreneurship could be the avenue that I could use to create true change in the world. This was the start of my entrepreneurship journey with marlow. Since then, we’ve raised $1M in investor funding, won Forbes 30 under 30, and
expanded to 70 retailers across Canada and the US. Now, I’ve made it my personal mission to inspire more youth to consider entrepreneurship as a career path.

So, why is it so important to get more youth into entrepreneurship?

  1. Teach youth creative problem solving skills
    Being a founder means finding a problem that you’re passionate about and creating
    innovative solutions to solve the problem. It fosters an entrepreneurial spirit and
    encourages youth to think about the biggest problems we’re currently facing around
    environmental sustainability, diversity and inclusion, and more. It encourages them to
    challenge the status quo, and look at things differently.
  2. It teaches youth about all areas of business
    In a traditional corporate business internship, you are often only focused on one area
    of the business including finance, operations, or marketing. However, in
    entrepreneurship, you get to wear all hats and learn to take initiative and develop
    your leadership skills.
  3. It fosters a growth mindset
    Entrepreneurs have big ambitions and are not afraid of failure. In fact, they
    encourage failure! They believe in failing fast to test out different strategies. They see
    failure as opportunities for growth rather than as a permanent setback.
  4. Grow their professional networks
    They often say “your network is your net worth”. As an entrepreneur, it’s so important
    to develop strong relationships with investors, potential customers, other founders,
    and more to accelerate the growth of your business. When youth enter
    entrepreneurship, they’ll be able to connect with successful entrepreneurs and gain
    access to very valuable mentorship opportunities.
  5. Allow youth to create an impact

One of the fastest growing sectors of entrepreneurship is the social innovation sector.
This sector focuses on solving problems with a social impact. Increasingly, this
generation of high school students are interested in creating meaningful change and having a social impact in their career and entrepreneurship can be an incredible channel to do so.

I could go on about all the incredible reasons why we need to get more youth into entrepreneurship and this is a big focus of my keynote talks on “The Power of Youth Entrepreneurship”. In this talk, I share my founding journey, lessons learned, and how to start thinking about launching a business.

To learn more or book Nadia for a presentation, check out her speaking page here