When Should You Become An Entrepreneur?

“I built a spreadsheet to determine the value of my stock options if I join your company,” the candidate said to me. “I adjusted the returns for risk, and I think I will make more money staying at my large (corporate) company.”

I’d seen it before. I knew the minute the spreadsheets come out the candidate wasn’t going to join the company.

The job candidate wasn’t wrong because…

It’s never wise, financially, to become an entrepreneur. Ever.

The odds are your company is going to fail. So you have to be able to withstand (financially) the failure.

Who should become an entrepreneur knowing you are likely to fail, and knowing that you have to be able to withstand the potential failure?

A. You have a burning desire to become an entrepreneur.

The odds don’t matter to you. Failure? It’s irrelevant because you’re not going to fail.

You are on a mission, and you have to start this company right now. Or…

B. You are forced to become an entrepreneur.

Sometimes circumstances force you into certain choices. Maybe you lost your job, and entrepreneurship is the only path for you going forward?

But it is wise to become an entrepreneur over 40?

No. But it isn’t wise when you’re 25 either. The difference is you have a lot more runway to recover when you’re 25 than when you’re 40.

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