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Posted by on Jul 7, 2009 in Uncategorized | 2 comments

Is America Entrepreneurial Enough?

No. We aren’t.


There’s my two cents, but for the sake of making this post more interesting, let me elaborate.


In BusinessWeek’s Small Biz blog on July 1, John Tozzi explored whether entrepreneurship is on the decline using Scott Shane’s data from the New York Times that it is declining, and Steve King’s data from Small Business Labs that it is not declining.


I am sure both men used reliable sources and logic to reach these conclusions, and both could be arguably correct depending on their data. However, what frightened me the most was that even if entrepreneurship is not declining, it sure doesn’t seem to be on the rise. Here is one of the graphs Steve King uses to support his assertion that entrepreneurship is not declining:




If these measly worms of graph are the best case scenario for the state of entrepreneurship in America, then we have a problem.


Everyone is debating the best way to “fix” the economy; what we need is not repair, but renewal. Trying to claw our way back to the way things used to be duirng more prosperous days is not going to help America into the coming years. What we need is innovation, creativity, and above all, entrepreneurship if we are to continue competing on a global stage. It is my sincere hope that over the next decade, graphs like the one above will show not only stability, but a rise in the rate of entrepreneurship.

  • Chris

    I agree completely. I think that entrepreneurship is necessary to revive the economy, but I think many people have the mindset that their job is stable, they get a weekly paycheck and don’t want to lose that, or don’t want to take the risks involved.

    I want very very badly to be an entrepreneur and start a company, and over the last year have been trying to come up with a plan. Unfortunately, I seem stuck and I don’t know how to get out. I can’t think of an idea that I believe strongly enough about to devote so much time and money into that I risk losing everything. I don’t know where to get funding either. I’ve thought about doing a franchise, but I don’t have much start-up capital, and many require a certain net worth, etc. Plus, I’d rather have my own company than a franchise; I think there’s more room for growth and opportunity. Help! haha.

  • Robert

    I agree wholeheartedly. After I left military service, I tried – I mean I really tried – to live life as a 9-to-5 rat. I couldn’t do it. Instead, my hobby became my life, and now here I am five years later, building my own business and enjoying life. Unfortunately, I’ve seen too many others who want to reach for the goal, but fall short of the brass ring not because they’ll fail, but because of the POSSIBILITY of failure.

    As Chris says, we’ve become too comfortable in the paycheck (can’t see how, as some stats say paychecks have been shrinking) and uncertainty breeds fear and ultimately contempt. The reasons for it are varied and sometimes controversial – from lower education standards to videogames to full moons and everything inbetween – but regardless, the ultimate truth is that we as a society, if we are ever to become the America we once were, need to be a nation of DaVincis and Edisons, Fords and Gateses…instead of Homer Simpsons.