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By Nupur Pavan Bang

Lack of jobs leave the youth of a country with no option but to explore being an entrepreneur. India is one such country where more than a million youth enter the workforce every month but only about 61 percent of them are able to get employed for a full year. Majority of unemployed graduates and post graduates cited non availability of jobs matching with education/skill and experience as the main reason for unemployment in the Employment- Unemployment Survey (2015-16), Government of India, Ministry of Labour and Employment. If the education and skills of these youths does not match the jobs available, they are left with no option but to start something of their own. Majority of the entrepreneurial activities in India are necessity driven.

The Government has been promoting its Startup India program, urging the youth to become “job creators” instead of “job seekers”. The youth will see entrepreneurship as an opportunity and not a necessity when they see it as being more satisfying both financially and emotionally (by creating jobs and bringing about change and innovation). Entrepreneurship will be lucrative if the idea (either product or service) offers value to its customers. Only then the business will become commercially viable in a short span of time. Lack of innovative ideas often plagues the students who may be inclined to become entrepreneurs.

There is also the fear of failure. The number of startups in India is very high and so is the number of ventures that fail. Almost 90% of startups fail within five years of their inception. The entrepreneurs are often not ready to tackle the real life challenges. They lack industry exposure and mostly have no one to guide. Low level of funding is also one of the reasons for failure. As per an estimate by FICCI, while the average amount being invested by the angel investors have increased over the years, most of the investors prefer to invest in the range of Rs0.5-1 million.

The best insurance against all these challenges is an innovative idea. Whether it is a product or service, if it is what the people want and/or it is something that no one else is offering and/or it is cheaper than what the existing players are offering at, the chances of success goes up drastically. Innovation is really the key to a successful business venture!

nupur smallNupur Pavan Bang (npbang@gmail.com) is with the Thomas Schmidheiny Centre for Family Enterprise at the Indian School of Business. She researches and writes on topics relating to family business, finance, insurance and economics. She aims to simplify these topics and find stories through data.