A Line at the Door
In the mid 1980s when I worked for Price Waterhouse, we used to help start-up companies prepare business plans and implement processes and systems to support their financing and growth. It seemed there were many start-ups all over the country and especially in the “Silicon Forest” here in Portland. We had the proverbial line at the door of companies asking for our help.
Recently, I was watching a business news channel and the commentator mentioned that surveys show entrepreneurial start-ups in the US were at a 30 year low.
Some would suggest the current recession has hurt a lot. While I’m sure it has, there were deep recessions in the 70s and 80s that didn’t seem to have the same effect. Others say that excessive government regulation has hurt. Again, I agree that regulation has put a damper on business start-ups, but I don’t think regulation fully explains the extent of the downturn. Still others suggest that September 11th changed the business environment literally overnight. That could also be true.
Risk and Reward
I think there has been an underlying change in our culture. Many entrepreneurial companies in the 80s and 90s were started by people in their 20s and 30s who had a drive for new ideas and were willing to take risks. It seems the youth of today don’t have that same drive and willingness to take risk. Certainly some do, but many more are looking for that perfect job that pays well and supports a low risk lifestyle.
Is that what has happened to the entrepreneurial spirit in this country? Can it be reawakened? What do you think?
© 2012 – Rick Pay – All Rights Reserved