The question of whether to go to university or get straight into the working world is a big dilemma for many people. University is often hailed as the route to a great job. While graduates on average end up earning more than non-graduates, there are also countless stories of millionaires being college drop outs. Does that mean dropping out is the way to go? Not necessarily.
The decision will differ between different people, so here are the benefits of each option if you’re thinking about becoming an entrepreneur.
The benefits of studying business
You learn a lot about business
It probably goes without saying, you’ll learn a lot about business and this knowledge will be incredibly useful for if you start your own.
When studying business, you’ll learn a lot about the theoretical side of business but will likely take part in more practical projects too. You will gain a good understanding of how businesses operate and how they react to economic fluctuations.
You will also gain experience in problem solving, analytical and critical thinking, and an understanding of financial data, presentation skills and project management. These are all useful for anyone serious about giving it a try as an entrepreneur.
While it’ll mostly be in an academic format, it’s still a good foundation to start working on. Those who have no business background can quite easily learn all of this themselves. However, it might take longer to learn through experience or you might end up learning things the hard way which could put your business at risk.
You can meet like-minded people
When wannabe entrepreneurs get together to study business, it’s only natural that a few business ideas will be born out of these interactions.
University or college can be a great way to find your future business partner. Having a business partner is useful for raising start-up capital, sharing and discussing ideas and pooling different strengths together.
You have access to university facilities and advice
Universities are keen to encourage entrepreneurism and many have guidance on this as part of their careers service. You can usually get advice about writing business plans, applying for funding or get work experience.
The benefits of skipping university
A head start while others have their heads down
One of the main benefits here is that while people are spending 3-4 years at university thinking about business, you can get a head start and learn on the job.
The first step is getting experience in working for a business and making sure you use the time to learn as much as possible about how they run it, how managers lead teams and customer relations.
If you’ve already got experience and are sure you know what you want to do, then this saves even more time.
Education is expensive and being stuck with thousands of pounds of debt before you’ve even started a business is not an enviable position to be in.
Saving money from education means that you’ve got less to worry about whereas those who end up with student debt will have to factor loan repayments into their financial plans.
Neither option is right or wrong and will depend entirely on what you feel is best for you. Plenty of entrepreneurs who have either struggled or just not felt passionately about higher or academic education have managed to make great success by learning in a more hands-on approach.
Others who thrive in an academic environment can take advantage of all the information they can pick up at university and then put it into practise effectively.
What do you think, are you better with or without that business degree? What tips would you give to people unsure about which route to go down? Please leave your thoughts in the comments!
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