The vast majority of teenage Brits aren’t interested in starting their own business, according to a survey commissioned by Google that paints a worrying picture for the future of British entrepreneurship.
The survey, released on Monday and based on statistics collected by YouGov, found that just 22% of people aged 15-18 believe they are likely to start their own business, compared to 78% who believe they are likely to work for a well-established company.
Of the 1,021 respondents, 56% perceived starting a business as risky, 21% as unstable, and 11% as reckless. One in three respondents added that they didn’t know anyone that had launched their own company.
The survey also found that boys are slightly more positive and confident than girls about entrepreneurship, with 45% of girls saying they fear failure compared to 39% of boys.
Google launches Future Founders
In a bid to help address the the attitudes of British teenagers towards entrepreneurship, Google announced on Monday that it is launching an initiative in the UK called Google Future Founders.
Google describes Future Founders as a youth entrepreneurship programme that will be run out of Google’s UK startup hub, Campus London. The programme will aim to tackle myths and perceived barriers to entrepreneurship and encourage a mindset of experimentation and bold thinking.
Through the programme, Google said groups of students aged 16-18 from schools across the UK will visit Campus London for half-day workshops run by startup experts and entrepreneurs. Visitors will be given ongoing access to mentorship, Google said.
Sarah Drinkwater, head of Campus London, said in a statement: “No matter what their eventual career, we know that teaching students about entrepreneurship builds critical thinking, communication and collaboration skills. These are highly important skills for young people as they prepare to enter the world of work, but can also ensure that the UK’s startup ecosystem flourishes in the years to come.
“From British app developers like Nick D’Aloisio, to YouTube content creators like Zoella or social entrepreneurs like GiveMeTap’s Edwin Broni-Mensah, we’ve seen numerous young founders that have a massive impact on their industries before they even turn 25. By running the Future Founders programme with our partners, we hope to inspire the next generation of innovators who will shape Britain’s future.”
The Future Founders programme builds on previous programmes from Google Campus, including baby-friendly start-up school “Campus for Mums and Dads” and Founders Over 50.