New businesses are created every day. Thousands of businesses get started every month thanks to the work of entrepreneurs. In the United States, there are more than 23 million small businesses that got their start at some level thanks to the work of an entrepreneur. Despite these positive facts, being an entrepreneur can be a struggle.
More than 90% of the businesses which get started today by an entrepreneur will fail within their first 5 years.
For the US, the general population sees about 320 entrepreneurs for every 100,000 people. California, Colorado, and Texas see some the largest populations, while places like West Virginia and Indiana see the least. A look at these entrepreneur demographics will show you what it takes to beat the odds and find success today.
Who Becomes An Entrepreneur?
- Men [62%] are more likely to become entrepreneurs than women [38%]. This gender gap has been increasing since 1996.
- Unlike small business owners, the youngest age demographics are the most likely to be entrepreneurs. 57% are under the age of 44 and 29% of the are between the ages of 20-34.
- Entrepreneurs in the 55-64 age demographic has grown from 14% to 21% in the last decade, which is the largest increase of any age group.
- 3 out of every 5 entrepreneurs are White/Caucasian, but 1 out of 4 are Hispanic.
- Only Blacks/African-Americans are under-represented as entrepreneurs in the US compared to their general population numbers, with just 9% being entrepreneurs.
- 18% of entrepreneurs are high school dropouts.
- 53% of entrepreneurs have taken at least some college classes. 28% of entrepreneurs have at least one college degree.
- More than half of today’s entrepreneurs graduated in the top 10% of their high school class.
The world of the entrepreneur ebbs and flows as the economy improves or declines. In 2011, for example, there was an average of 543,000 new businesses being created in the US every month. In 1997, there were just 395,000 new businesses being created every month. As workers begin to get fed up with depressed wages, few advancement opportunities, and being asked to do more work, they begin turning to the world of entrepreneurship as a way to earn money from their natural talents. It isn’t an easy journey to walk for sure, but it is one that more and more people have been embracing in the last 10 years.
How Entrepreneurs Find Their Success
- 58% of entrepreneurs say that they were able to successfully start a new business because of their past experiences.
- The percentage of entrepreneurs who say they use past failures to fuel new successes: 40%. That’s higher than the 39% who say they’ve learned from previous successes.
- 1 in 4 entrepreneurs say that they key to them finding success is having an adequate source of funding available.
- 22% of entrepreneurs attribute luck or good fortune to the success they’ve been able to find. That percentage is equal to those who consider their professional network an essential component of their success.
- Only 1 in 5 entrepreneurs see a college education as important.
- Just 4% of entrepreneurs say that the advice or assistance they received from company investors turned them from an entrepreneur into a small business owner.
- 1 in 4 entrepreneurs have 15+ years of experience in their industry, which they use to build their profile.
- 3 out of 5 entrepreneurs say that they got started because they either didn’t want to work for someone else or their family responsibilities required non-traditional employment.
- 68% of entrepreneurs say that they got started because they wanted to capitalize on an opportunity that came their way.
- 12% of entrepreneurs have more than 25% of their business come from international customers.
Entrepreneurs always have great ideas. What separates a good entrepreneur from a great one is the execution which occurs behind those ideas. Risks are always part of the entrepreneur’s world, but the most successful entrepreneurs tend to take small and educated risks which keep at least one foot securely planted on a firm financial foundation. Success can be defined in a number of different ways. What is clear from this data is that a majority of the entrepreneur demographics pull upon their own experiences to create their own successes – with a little bit of luck along the way.
How Family Plays A Role In The Life Of An Entrepreneur
- More than 40% of today’s entrepreneurs were the first-born child of their family.
- 1 in 3 entrepreneurs grew up in a household that would be defined as the lower middle class in the US today.
- 51% of entrepreneurs are the first ones in their family to make the effort to start a business.
- About 70% of entrepreneurs are already married and nearly 60% of entrepreneurs have already had at least 1 child.
- 3 out of 4 entrepreneurs say that one of the primary reasons why they began their work was because they wanted to build wealth for their family.
- For this reason, 69% of entrepreneurs say that their primary place to work is their home office.
What makes entrepreneurship so attractive is that it is always available. When life changes and the current employment or business ownership opportunities are no longer meeting a household’s needs, becoming an entrepreneur can allow people to continue to chase their dreams. Whether that means becoming an independent representative in an MLM organization or starting your own business from scratch with personal talents, the entrepreneur demographics prove that anyone can get involved and find success.
Women Are Changing the Entrepreneurial World
- Women who are entrepreneurs have seen almost 2x the growth in their opportunities [42% to 23%] since 1997 compared to all opportunities in the general population.
- About 10 million businesses are currently operating because of the efforts of female entrepreneurs.
- About $2 trillion in annual sales is generated every year because of the efforts of women in the entrepreneurial world.
- Women are founding businesses in the US at 1.5x the national average.
What is unique about the entrepreneur demographics is that sometimes the majority groups aren’t seeing the most success. Men might dominate this industry, but women are seeing the most overall success. Women are seeing more money come to them through successful crowdfunding efforts, receiving more overall support, and generating trillions of dollars in sales every year. Since the Fortune 500 businesses barely include women in their executive leadership, is it any wonder why women are thinking about becoming entrepreneurs? It may have once been taboo, but today a female entrepreneur is one of the most coveted business professionals in the US today.