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Are you an ‘accidental entrepreneur’?

19 Jun 12

A recent US study commissioned by Symantec makes for interesting reading about what has been driving entrepreneurship and small business growth since the beginning of the global recession.

Carried out by Forrester Consulting, the study paints a picture of a new style of entrepreneur, driven not by an irresistible urge to create and run their own company but by the sheer need to survive in the face of economic uncertainty and upheaval.

These so-called ‘accidental entrepreneurs’ are ‘agile, highly educated, tech-savvy and battle-tested business professionals’, the study says - and that’s affecting their attitude towards achieving growth.

For example, 54% of all small businesses founded around the time of the recession consider their company a growth business with an exit strategy, rather than a lifestyle business. That’s 15% higher than pre-recession companies.

Business run by accidental entrepreneurs are also more likely to adopt new technologies, with 51% deploying cloud software and 26% running cloud security, compared with 39% and 16% for businesses founded before 2008.

Brian Burch, vice president of marketing communications for SMB and .Cloud at Symantec, says with this sort of technology uptake, the businesses run by accidental entrepreneurs have the potential to be the driving force of America’s economic recovery.

"Accidental entrepreneurs are reshaping the SMB market,” Burch says.

"They’re growing significantly faster than the less technically confident, less agile, less connected small business owner, and they need simple, easy to deploy and easy to manage solutions that can keep pace as they quickly scale their company.”

Are you an accidental entrepreneur? Is your start-up to be a growth business you plan to sell, or a lifestyle business you will continue to run? Post your comments below.

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