If you go back ten or fifteen years or so, everyone used to talk about being their own boss, shedding the 9-5 lifestyle and answering to no-one. And sure, there were people who did just this, but sadly they were the minority. Fast forward to 2017 and there are now huge numbers of people starting their own business from home or setting up a small enterprise locally and becoming successful entrepreneurs. So why has entrepreneurship taken off so rapidly in the UK?
When a person is looking to make a big change in their life and go self-employed, one of the things they need is a helping hand. Whether this is in the form of inspiration or encouragement from someone famous, or comes in the form of actual monetary assistance from the government depends on the individual and their particular circumstances, but here in the UK, there seems to be plenty of both.
One system in place from the government is called the Help to Grow scheme. This pledged £1 billion to help companies cut red tape and find the funding they need to get started. The idea is that the small and medium sized businesses are the heart of the UK economy and also boost exports that make the government more money. So they wanted to provide a boost to start these small businesses and schemes such as Funding for Lending has done just that.
Rise in entrepreneurs
There’s no doubt that the numbers leading by example have also had a big impact on others who want to go down the road to entrepreneurship but were a little hesitant or unsure. There has been a steady rise in the number of companies being registered with Companies House and this shows that the urge for more of us to have our own business is getting stronger:
2011 – 440,000
2012 – 482,000
2013 – 502,068
2014 – 581,173
2015 – 609,100
The urge to be entrepreneurs
According to surveys conducted at the end of 2016 by the TUC, around 50% of British people aged 25-34 are considering starting their own business in 2017 and one of the reasons for this is the wealth of online opportunities available. Many of these will take a hobby and create a business from it.
An analysis of official figures by the TUC to mark National Work From Home Day reveals that nearly a quarter of a million (241,000) more people work from home than a decade ago.
The most popular areas for potential new company formations were in cooking (19%), baking (18%), photography (18%) and sports (16%). Shows such as the Great British Bake Off and The Apprentice are often cited as inspiring people to get out there and find a niche that suits their interests and passions. Co-working spaces also allow people to have a small dedicated working space without the major investment of a dedicated premises but also not taking over part of their own home.
Businesses that live entirely online are also a huge growth area as these don’t require the same commitments for physical premises, lots of technical equipment or associated costs and overheads. According to figures from the TUC, there are now around 1.5 million people working from home, a rise of a fifth in the last ten years. Factors such as high speed internet connections and cloud based systems have made this possible, alongside the growth of freelance industries where businesses hire someone to do a specific job rather than employ them full-time.
As well as popular reality TV shows, many real world people offer inspiration to become entrepreneurs and show what can be done with dedication and hard work, such as Richard Branson and James Dyson. From former famous footballers who have become career management business owners and restauranteurs to musicians making cheese (Alex James of Blur fame), there are lots of examples of people famous for doing or being one thing who have turned their skills to form a completely new successful business.
Larger than life rap star Will.i.Am is a perfect example – he has built on a successful music career to become an entrepreneur. He has designed his own digital camera as well as an iPhone case that enhances the smartphone’s camera function, making it better for sharing images across social media. There are many more examples out there of artist-turned-entrepreneur, but far too many to list here.
It is easier than ever to start your own company – you can use a company formation service, such as ours, to create the company and ensure everything is done correctly. This ensures that you fulfil all the legal requirements and means that more people with that entrepreneurial spirit will be able to take the first steps to fulfilling their dream of owning their own business.