You Can Do It: Why (and How) to Start a Business While in College

If there’s one thing that students always seem to be short of, it’s money. Taking up a part-time job can offset this somewhat, and a lucky few will be able to turn to their parents for a bit of extra cash. For most students, however, a lack of funds seems to be an inextricable part of the experience.

More students would probably feel inclined to start their own businesses while in college, even if it is only a relatively small operation, if they knew how much easier it was. Starting a business while in college is a much more realistic option than many people realize, and there are a number of reasons why you should consider doing so.

Making Money!

Let’s get the most obvious benefit of starting your own business out-of-the-way first – you will be able to earn some extra money to support yourself through your studies. College isn’t cheap, and it only seems to be getting more expensive as time goes on. Starting a business is a great way of bringing in a little extra income, but it is important to be realistic in your expectations.

As a student, the temptation to spend money as soon as you earn it is understandable. But if you are serious about developing your business, you will need to learn to manage your money carefully. That doesn’t mean that you can’t spend any money on yourself, but you should carefully consider your spending decisions.

Of course, starting a business will require some kind of startup money. Make sure that you look for the financing at the right place and don’t pour in money that you can’t afford to lose. Making poor choices when you start your business will mean you are starting at a disadvantage.

Learn to Prioritize

It doesn’t matter what your chosen subject is, or your future career plans, many of the skills required to succeed in business are also required to succeed as a student. Among these, the ability to prioritize your time and resources effectively is one of the most important. If you aren’t able to effectively prioritize and decide what is most important, you will struggle to study.

Starting up your own business will throw you in the deep end as far as sorting your priorities out is concerned. From the very first steps you take in starting your business, you will need to have a plan for both the short-term and the long-term. However, things can change very quickly for any business, especially a new one. This means that you will need to be able to adapt and shift your priorities according to changing circumstances.

Use College Resources to Your Advantage

If you decide that you will be starting a business at college before you have enrolled, you might want to base your choice of courses on the kind of business you will be pursuing. On the other hand, if you are already a student, and you are now looking for a new challenge in starting a business, you will have to work with what you have in terms of resources.

In either case, identifying what resources are available to you through your college, and how you can best put them to use with your particular business, is an important part of the process. The availability of college resources is one of the few advantages that you will have as a student entrepreneur. If you can find a way of using these resources to your advantage, it could be the difference between a successful business and a failing one.

Plan For Your Future

Starting a successful business at college will give you a firm basis for your professional life when you graduate. Not only does it offer you the opportunity to prepare yourself financially, it will also equip you with a great many of the skills you need to thrive and succeed. We mentioned earlier that running a successful business will require you to effectively prioritize your time and manage your money, but there are a plethora of other skills you will learn as well.

If you don’t leave college with a thriving business to manage, you will at least leave it well prepared for your future in a number of other ways. Even if your business ends up going nowhere, you will have learned one of the most genuinely important lessons an entrepreneur can learn, how to cope with failure.

Caitlin Evans is a bookworm, photographer and dancer. She is also a medical student in love with science. When she is not trying to find the meaning of life and Universe, Caitlin is researching and writing about various health related topics. She is happily addicted to art in all its forms, grilled tofu and caffeine.

 

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