What is the price of entrepreneurship?

From long working hours, to missed social occasions and having to sell belongings for funds the entrepreneurial road can be challenging. So often there are so many things we must give up to succeed in our professional and work lives but how should we justify this compromise?

The reality is that so often we think entrepreneurial ideas are an immediate road to success, but the reality is likely to be many tireless years of work, knockbacks, and disappointment.
It is easy to forget that some of the first computers invented were built in family garages or that top concepts we cannot imagine our lives without where once called useless and refused investment. What is it that drives entrepreneurs to stick with their passions when the road to success is so fraught with obstacles?

When asking entrepreneurs what it took for them to be able to finance their companies there is rarely a simple answer. Anecdotes range from stories of having to sell clothes to larger compromises like the sale of family homes. The economic downside of raising much needed capital to start businesses is often the most challenging. Alternatively, some entrepreneurs cite the compromise of sleep or social lives, and how to start their brand the main thing they had to forgo were the hours before and after their nine to five jobs. Challenges of this kind most commonly require resilience and a greater aim. It appears too difficult to only be half committed to entrepreneurship.

With these difficulties in mind, it is important, more than ever, that we are supporting entrepreneurs and facilitating environments to support this development. Financial support, mentorship and guidance are all as important to ensure we continue to move forward in the industry.

However, with so many challenges, why is it that the younger generation seems to be developing such entrepreneurial spirit? The simple answer seems to be passion. When asking entrepreneurs what led them to go to extremes for their businesses so often, they speak of an unyielding belief that their product or concept was needed. This passion is the missing piece which works to allow these compromises to be worthwhile. Perhaps entrepreneurship eclipses a job and instead extends to a greater mindset and psyche.

However, these compromises that come with entrepreneurship also can deliver many rewards. Flexibility, creative control, and an opportunity to follow passions are all positives which many corporate jobs don’t always offer. When asked about the many challenges faced by entrepreneurs there is a sense that the time given up never seemed like an option and instead felt natural.

Entrepreneurship can be a difficult path yet one which ultimately has undeniable benefits. It is important more than ever that we are creating space within the industry to allow such passion to flourish and in turn grow the food and hospitality industry.

Written by Lexie Cook, EP Business in Hospitality