When I left university setting up your own business was not an option anyone mentioned. To me an entrepreneur was….well I'm not sure I knew what one was.
Over the years that followed as I worked in my first jobs in industry I read about Richard Branson, loved Virgin the record store and watched Freddie Laker open an airline. Showing my age here. Anita Roddick was my hero, took the Body Shop from kitchen to shop then market listing.
They inspired me and at the age of 27 I gave it a go with a guy who found me actually and the two of us launched a company. I confess it was his idea but it was just the two of us and a small lab with Angel and bank finance. We grew, lasted three years, employed 10 people at our peak and then went bust. I survived and learnt from our mistakes.
I have told this story before but feel compelled to remind my own team and the rest of you to show the contrast with the vast levels of opportunity and support available now compared to the boom years of the 1980s. Boom and Big Bang in the city but no startup incubators, seed funds, Angel networks and Internet to spread the word.
Now, in 2016, there really is no excuse: if you want to start a business you can. What you will find if you do it is that it's not easy and can be a very lonely experience, but hell it’s worth it.
Just don't tell me you can't locate the help you need and sigh about investors, there is more choice and opportunity than there has ever been. Perhaps more competition too and it's more complicated in some ways. What holds true however is, like Branson, those who see only opportunities, don't moan about it and just do it and succeed. People who talk a lot don't. Maybe not first time but eventually. So there is hope for me yet! I'm on my third venture but don't tell anyone, it's a secret. It's also great fun!