We are all familiar with the stereotype of the young entrepreneur; technology whizz kids with all the latest mobile devices and the ability to multitask as they type hundreds of words a minute. Sage – which examines the key characteristics, attitudes and behaviours of young entrepreneurs around the world – confirms that there is plenty of truth in this picture of how young people work and interact with technology.
What’s more, our research in Nigeria and 15 other countries shows that we are just at the beginning of a major shift in how businesses are run as the young entrepreneurs make their presence felt. Mobile technology has already made us all much more productive and helped companies of all sizes to reduce costs and become more efficient, but most young entrepreneurs see plenty of opportunities to do even much more with the tools and apps available at their disposal.
Some of the most interesting local findings on Nigerian young entrepreneurs include:
- 96% say that they still feel the same excitement about their business as they did when they first started it
- 44% say they will start over 5 businesses in their lifetime
- 42% say they would have still been able to run their business with the technology available 20 years ago
- 38% say they socialise with their team once a month
- 29% say that work comes before life
- 16% say that they get out of bed in the morning because they want to make a difference in the world and do some social good
Mobile devices are the platform of choice for today’s entrepreneur and, as you might expect from a generation that has been mobile literate from an extremely young age, a large proportion place huge emphasis on technology and are keen to be at the forefront of new trends. Young Nigerians are mobile-first people, so that’s no surprise at all.
More than a third of young entrepreneurs (38% in Nigeria) say the technology they use is the most important element when it comes to the smooth running of their business; they couldn’t prosper without it. 42% say they could probably not have run their business with the technology available 20 years ago. That’s an incredible stat: far from destroying jobs through automation, technology is inspiring young people to create businesses that could not have existed in the past.