Building your network can help in finding mentors

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The article in Inc., by Stewart Thornhill Why You Might Want to Hold Off On YourStartup Dreams makes the argument that would-be entrepreneurs might be better off entering the workforce after graduation rather than trying their chances at a startup.

….entering the workforce to spend a few years in a stable position has tremendous benefits for aspiring founders and their future ventures, and could even pave the way toward founding better, more stable ventures.

One of those benefits is building a professional network:

Building a professional network is essential to any recent graduate, regardless of what their career path might look like. For entrepreneurs, networking is especially important when it comes to generating awareness for your venture, attracting investors, securing customers and building your staff. Many student entrepreneurs build up a solid network at school, but can struggle to grow it beyond their campuses or college towns. Spending a few years working for another company helps to keep entrepreneurs sharp and build up a solid list of references for the future. Many times, co-workers become co-founders and managers become mentors, helping to navigate the common pitfalls in business that until that point have yet to be seen. And, as important as building a network, graduates can establish a reputation within their organization–a reputation that will follow them into their own ventures. Becoming known as someone who can get things done is easily as valuable as the degree one earned in school.

Note that building your network can be key to find mentors for your career or your startup. And just as important is building your personal brand. It’s not just who you know, but who knows you, as the saying goes.

The author concludes:

Before making startup dreams a reality, entrepreneurs should weigh the pros and cons of all their options and not forget that delaying entrepreneurship does have its benefits.

 

Author: Mentorphile

Mentor, coach, and advisor to entrepreneurs, small businesses, and non-profit organizations. General manager with significant experience in both for-profit and non-profit organizations. Focus on media and information. On founding team of four venture-backed companies. Currently Chairman of Popsleuth, Inc., maker of the Endorfyn app for keeping fans updated on new stuff from their favorite artists.

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