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Tap Into Your Entrepreneurial Spirit with These 5 Tips


Image of teenage girl working on her laptop surrounded by paper, notepads, and stick notes.

Image caption: Teenage girl works to start her own business.

Wednesday, November 15 was National Entrepreneur's Day, an annual event that honors individuals who have put in the hard work and dedication to create successful business ventures. Entrepreneurship is one of the earliest foundations of America – our country was built on the ideas of great men and women who created innovative products and services from seemingly nothing.  

At Junior Achievement of Western PA (JA), we believe in empowering students to follow their entrepreneurial dreams. By providing guides to success through educational programming and events, we hope to enable the next generation of entrepreneurs to be successful and reach their goals. 

Here are some of the biggest tips for inspiring student entrepreneurs: 


Find mentors 

A business mentor is a person with experience and knowledge who is willing to offer you advice on how to run your venture successfully.  Try to connect with local entrepreneurs who share similar passions. When reaching out, send them an email explaining who you are and your entrepreneurship backgrounds and ideas. 

Don’t overlook the possibility of obtaining a mentor through educators at school. It takes great entrepreneurial and innovative spirit to successfully manage a classroom. Try reaching out to teachers in the subjects of life skills, statistics, math or writing as they can help you with various aspects of running a business like pricing goods, paying taxes and applying for grants.  


Don’t be afraid of failure 

Failure is a scary, but necessary, part of life, especially in the entrepreneurship field. The reality is that most business ideas don’t always work out at first. In your entrepreneurial career, not every person will want to be a mentor, your products may not do well initially and you’ll inevitably run into various roadblocks. Getting used to failure and rejection will not only allow you to deal with problems, but it will also teach you the importance of resiliency and drive. 


Get a job 

Getting a job while spreading the roots of your entrepreneurial ideas will not only fund your venture but also prepare you for success. In addition to learning basic financial skills like budgeting and understanding taxes, you’ll also be making money to put back into your business. Be sure to reach out to your leaders and managers at your job too – they would be great people to utilize as mentors! 


Practice time management 

Time management will be key in your entrepreneurship journey. In addition to attending school, going to work and participating in extracurriculars, you also need to make time to start your own business. Some time management techniques include: 

  • Blocking time off in the morning or evening to work on your business 
  • Limiting distractions like phones, social media or television 
  • Making a to-do list every day 
  • Finding your most productive hours and using that time for your most important tasks 
  • Writing out SMART (specific, measurable, relevant, achievable and time-bound) goals 


Partake in JA programs 

Head to the JA programs page to browse the various courses you can take to improve your entrepreneurial skills. Programs like “JA Be Entrepreneurial,” “JA Entrepreneurial Mindset” and “JA It’s My Business!” teach aspiring entrepreneurs the skills they need to be successful. The programs are available for both in-class use and virtually and are great building blocks to explore your entrepreneurial drive! 

Select a button below to see how you or your organization can get involved with Junior Achievement of Western Pennsylvania, Inc..

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Any questions? Contact us!

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