It is likely that with little debate, we can all agree that job creation and increasing organic opportunities for success is the nexus of a community. The chance to amplify job creation in our cities, big and small, is at our fingertips.
While recruiting existing businesses to a marketplace is good for job creation, the impact on taxpayers is that they end up eating the tax incentives offered to these companies.
The real leverage we have as a community is to unlock the potential of our own job creators — our future entrepreneurs.
Community leaders must leverage all their resources to embrace and foster these future leaders and job creators through entrepreneurial cultivation. The entrepreneurial cultivation tools needed to really accelerate the entrepreneurial spirit are already in place.
Communication and education Platforms such as incubators and launch houses are continually cropping up throughout our towns. Introducing dreamers to such tools as our publications and forums is an essential piece of the puzzle.
To make a broader impact, every effort should be made to cultivate young minds to entrepreneurial avenues. We must attempt to foster entrepreneurial thinking by the time a student is in seventh grade. These resources should be part of the required curriculum to enlighten young minds to all the possibilities that lie before them.
Corporate engagement Let’s stimulate, even pressure our corporate leaders to engage in mentorship programs. It may be a bit of an arm twist at first, but I can assure you that mentors will grow to feel gratified about their work. The mentor /mentee relationship is rewarding for both.
Financing opportunities Connecting private capital and alternative lenders with entrepreneurial platforms is a must.
Cash flow is the lifeblood of a business and there’s plenty of money available from nontraditional lenders. It’s of great importance to make accessing capital easier. We need to educate borrowers about these funding options available to them.
The tools to measure the success and development of entrepreneurial cultivation are critical to the process. As they say, “you can’t manage what you can’t measure.” An important role for community leaders is to ensure a level playing field.
Access to resources among all socioeconomic backgrounds is critical. Extra effort toward entrepreneurial cultivation needs to be given to underserved communities and to demographically challenged areas. There is no better way to rebuild an impoverished neighborhood than to help its citizens realize their dreams.
Without the tools, the deck is stacked too highly against these would-be business owners and future employers. Entrepreneurship has the potential to be the perfect open loop answer to raising the quality of life and improving the standard of living in our poorer communities.
Having systems and tools in place to encourage entrepreneurial activity is crucial to society. Our efforts in pushing entrepreneurship cultivation forward will have a lasting impact and we have an obligation to make these tools readily accessible. ●
Joel Adelman is CEO at AdCap Management