How to Become a Successful Student Entrepreneur

Just because you’re still in school that doesn’t mean you need to wait to start a business. Don’t let your age and your position in life stop you from following your dream. If you’ve got a great idea, someone will steal it or come up with something similar if you don’t get a move on quickly. Here are some ways to get you started.

Fix Something

If you want to start a business, you need something to sell. The best way to ensure that you make something that people buy is to find a problem and solve it. And boy,are colleges rife with problems to solve. Walk around and pay attention to life on your campus. What’s bugging people day after day? Find the problems that seem impossible to solve or at least streamline, and tackle one. Once you’ve figured out how to fix the issue, you now have something you can charge money for.

Be Your Company’s Biggest Proponent

You are your company’s best salesperson because you know the most about it. If you’re socially awkward, find a way to relax around new people and communicate with them well. You need to be able to present your idea in an attractive way. You should always be pitching whenever someone asks you about your venture. It might feel uncomfortable, but trust us; you need people to remember you, your passion and your product.

Make Things Simple to Understand

When it comes to the early stages of your venture, all you need is a one-page website and some very minimal brochures. Now is the time to be as clear as possible about what it is you’re doing. The sophisticated stuff will come later. Keep things easy to maintain and understand right now. This is the stage at which you’ll be looking for investors, and if you’re in college, you’ll probably have to work a little harder to convince people to give you their money. Having a clear, simple presentation will inspire confidence.

Build It!

If you’re going to sell a physical item, we have some bad news. You’re going to have to figure out how to make a prototype. The reasons for this are many and obvious. Prototypes give someone a physical piece of equipment to handle when you’re pitching potential investors or employees. At this stage of the game, you need as much proof as you can get that your idea is worthwhile and works. Take advantage of any facilities your school might have that could assist you with this construction. If you want to launch a business in college, your school might actually have resources for you to use. If you’re enrolled in UAB’s online MBA, they definitely will.

Prepare for the Tradeoffs

Unless you want to abandon New York University entirely for the sake of your business, you need to make time to focus on your studies. Starting a business is one of life’s great time eaters, so accept the fact that you’ll have to give up some of your social life. We know that doesn’t sound like fun, but you’ll have to make sacrifices if you want to get ahead.