Youngsters rejecting rat race in favour of going it alone

Apr 20 2005 by Nic Paton Print This Article

A growing number of young people say they want to start their own business rather than work for someone else.

A survey by vocational qualifications body City & Guilds has suggested "power-hungry young Britons" are shunning the security of being an employee in favour of the risks, but possible rewards, of going it alone.

Nearly half – 49 per cent – of the 1,112 16-25 year-olds said they had a "strong desire" to go it alone rather than bow down to the demands of a boss.

Young men were more likely to want to take the plunge, with nearly two thirds wishing to set up their own business compared with 44 per cent of young women.

More than one in ten of those polled said they planned to set the wheels in motion within a year, while a quarter wanted to get up and running in 12 months to five years.

Nearly half said they were "very ambitious" and 70 per cent wanted to be in control of their lives, while a quarter wanted to be millionaires.

Their role models, said City & Guilds, included Richard Branson and Jamie Oliver, followed by Anita Roddick, Bill Gates and Easyjet's Stelios.

Britain was already witnessing a swelling of entrepreneurs, as nearly half of those polled said they already knew someone under the age of 30 who had their own business.

Chris Humphries, director-general of City & Guilds, said: "It's reassuring to see that many young people today are extremely ambitious and possess real entrepreneurial spirit.

"It's vital that, as a society, we encourage our young people to fulfil their vision by giving them as much support, guidance and skills as possible, as this will ultimately benefit them and the British economy."