If you spend enough time with entrepreneurs, you begin to think like one.
Once you begin to think like one, you begin believing you can be one too.
And after you begin believing you can be one too, suddenly, all the opportunities you once thought were out of reach begin unfolding before your eyes.
In my entrepreneurship class, a major project we have coming up is to interview an entrepreneur (not to mention I’ve already done this dozens of times for the LaunchPad itself). Why? Why would a business professor want students to interview entrepreneurs?
Here’s a secret: It’s not just for the networking opportunity.
Once you interview an entrepreneur, you understand not only what drives them to pursue the path less taken, but you also learn the process of kickstarting a business.
And more importantly, you learn that this process is much more within reach than you could have ever imagined.
When we hear the word “entrepreneurship,” we think of college dropout billionaire success stories (think Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg…) In reality, most entrepreneurship is not multibillion-dollar-business-or-nothing.
Entrepreneurs range anywhere from innovative tech ventures to small businesses to freelancers just seeking a replacement for a 9-5 job. In fact, the allure of wealth is rarely a primary motivator, considering many entrepreneurs are content with a similar income to traditional positions but with freedom to pursue their passions, enjoy flexibility, or experience an alternative lifestyle.
So I implore you: Don’t feel intimidated. Send an email to an entrepreneur. Make a phone call or DM. In some way, shape, or form — reach out. Whether you hold a quick coffee chat or maintain long-term collaborative contact, you will find value in the conversation or relationship you build.
Contact entrepreneur. Speak. Learn.
Without even realizing it, you’ll very quickly find yourself brainstorming ways to design your own lifestyle, to launch your own business, or at the very least, to explore the road less traveled.
Don’t know where to start? Join Syracuse University’s Blackstone LaunchPad & Techstars to uncover a robust community of self-starters ready to offer support and help you grow.
By Blackstone LaunchPad Orange Ambassador Alesandra (Sasha) Temerte ’23, Coronat Scholar, Renée Crown Honors