That's the title of Laura Petrecca's article in USA Today, but actually it's by no means just about "older" Americans: the stats indicate it's "just-plain American" (of all ages) who are starting new businesses, electing self-employment, and otherwise going off on their own as consultants, free-agents, and the like. Here are some of the key numbers on self-employment from that article:
"Twenty years ago teaching people how to start their own businesses was a
sideshow at B-schools, of scant interest to future consultants and Wall
Streeters. Today entrepreneurship education is everywhere. More than two-thirds
of U.S. colleges and universities — well over 2,000, up from 200 in the 1970s
— are teaching it, and they offer it to all comers: social workers, farmers,
and even musicians. The field is thriving, but have we figured out yet the best
way to teach this stuff? If not, are we at least getting better at it? And can
you even teach someone to be an entrepreneur?"— from the Fortune article, "Can you learn to be an entrepreneur?"
The article generally comes down on the side of "Yes, you can learn entrepreneurial skills and traits. It doesn't get into just what those traits are (other than developing a "proper attitude toward risk") but the sidebar, "Small-Biz U" gives an overview and slide-show of five programs on small business and entrepreneurship.
The article seems more oriented to entrepreneurship in the larger sense — developing business plans and setting up firms — than it is to opportunities in self-employment, consulting, and free-agency.
The nature of work may be changing, suggests Michael Luo in The New York Times, as work may be "becoming more temporary and project-based, with workers increasingly functioning as free agents and no longer being governed by traditional long-term employer-employee relationships."
Michael Sinclair, featured in the article, speaking of his role as an independent contractor in the
Yeah, it surprised me, too, to read that in what I'd long viewed as the ultra-liberal, pro-big-government New York Times.
But it wasn't really the Times speaking, rather it was Tom Friedman, one of the Times' most savvy and open-minded columnists.
Here's an article on what Sarah Needleman in the Wall Street Journal refers to as "accidental entrepreneurs" — people who found their jobs gone, unexpectedly, and had to start over on their own.
Finding sales prospects, first basic rule: You can make a sale only if you deal with the person who can say Yes to what you offer.
That’s obvious enough, especially if you’re selling to individuals.
But it’s more difficult if you’re selling to organizations. The selling skills you use in finding prospects within organizations in both the public and private sectors is more complicated, as
Customer care and follow-up. Your first sale to a customer may be profitable, but it's the follow-up sales that really help.
It's an instance of the 80-20 Rule: 80 percent of your profits and revenue will come from just 20 percent of your customers. Implication: your present customers probably offer the greatest potential for profitable repeat business.
Just what IS a buying signal?
A buying signal is some kind of often subtle signal that the mood has shifted and the other person is now ready to agree . . . or at least to be open to what you propose.
In other words, a "buying signal" may signal readiness to . . .
I collect management consultant jokes. Most are funny, some are all-too-true. Like this one: "Question,
"Starting over at 55" — title of the article by Stephen Greenhouse, part of a New York Times special section on retirement.
Some interesting case studies on early retirees who used their skills and experience to start-up new