By Paul Smith, Co-founder and CEO //
Decades ago, having a job was a mark of respect. Climbing the career ladder was something everyone aimed for, and if you were lucky enough to become a senior member of your company, you could consider yourself to be a success. But if you ask any millennial today what their career goal is for the future, it’s unlikely you’ll get the same response.
According to a survey conducted by Bentley University in Massachusetts, only 13 percent of millennials are vying for a corporate career. But by a large contrast, 67 percent of millennials have plans of starting their own business. So, if there’s such a vast disparity between millennials with their sights set on a corporate career and millennials who want to start their own company, there’s clearly a lack of cohesion somewhere.
Is everything changing?
Is it likely that the very definition of ‘business’ is changing? Possibly. Anyone can call themselves a solo entrepreneur these days. Savvy millennials have realized this and, combined with their technology knowledge, are now able to create a business from the comfort of their own bedroom. Startups are on trend, and everyone wants to be CEO of something. But if the rulebook is being ripped up, how do boardrooms fit into this new order? Well, they’re much more necessary than you might think.
As a budding business owner and/or entrepreneur, you’ll need skills. That is unavoidable. And for the enthusiastic millennial, it might seem hard to even know where to find them. Being a board director enables you to learn all the skills related to business, regardless of which industry you’re focused on, such as the ability to effectively communicate, build a supportive environment, convey company vision and assess and employ professionals who will assist in cultivating the best business practices. These skills and more are highly transferable across a wide range of sectors, and employers are beginning to realize the value in that.
How the boardroom can help you
Having an early board career gives you the experience necessary in starting your own business. You might think ‘corporate life’ isn’t for you, and it doesn’t have to be. But boardrooms are becoming much more broadly defined and they’re creating their own personalities. It’s no longer all about a group of old, white males sitting at a vast mahogany table, banging their fists and talking over one another.
The boardroom is slowly filling up with innovators, people who are willing to mix things up and challenge the status quo. And what we’re finding at the Future Directors Institute is a myriad of people who are changing the game and making the boardroom part of their career right now, because they see the advantages it can bring. They understand their influence is being sought out, they recognize the positive impact their presence can have and they’re not afraid to put their skills and perspectives to good use.
So, if you’re craving a career change or you’re unsure of where to even start, consider signing up to our online coaching course to see how you can make a difference.