Updated: Feb 6
As we've reached June of 2020, we've watched thousands of high school and college graduates either virtually participated for graduation or walked across a bare stadium stage in their caps and gowns. As they shifted their tassels celebrating all they've accomplished, a shade of worry dims the light of their career and financial future.
With evidence from previous recessions, particularly the great recession back in 2008, this specific group of young adults will face harder economic times than any other age group. According to the new Nuffield- funded Resolution Foundation research, the current financial crisis risks pushing an additional 600,000 18-24-year-olds into unemployment in the coming year – and causing long-term damage to their pay and job prospects.
The UN's International Labour Organization released a global workforce report stating that more than one in six young people aged 18-29 has stopped working since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic. The young people who had remained employed during the epidemic had seen their working hours fall by 23%.
In response to this newly found crisis, what solutions do we have available to this group, providing them remediation and some sort of stability for their financial future? While the government can step in, another solution would be to embrace entrepreneurship, thus creating opportunities where options are slim.
Here are three ways you can gear your youth toward the path of entrepreneurship.
1. Encourage Entrepreneurship.
Parents of these graduates must release the traditions of the past and provide mental support geared toward entrepreneurship for their children. The truth is, there may not be available jobs or remote work from companies that are willing to trust and hire entry-level employees with little to no experience. It's important to remember that they are too recovering from the impact of COVID-19 and may need more experience workers to get them back on track.
Nevertheless, living in an economy where technology is always changing, lies the key to multiple opportunities that do not require much capital to start. The greatest gift you can provide your newly graduate currently is a seed investment and never-ending support toward a startup of their own.
2. Provide resources and mentorship to help them think outside the box.
Provide mentorships tracks that shed light on how ideas can transform into a profitable business. Get your recent graduates into virtual support groups held by other successful entrepreneurs. Provide entrepreneurship books written by others who changed their lives when they were in the same situation of limited opportunities. Nurture and reprogram their mindset to not only think outside the box but also be inspired to take action.
3. Create pathways to monetization.
As the mindset of these recent graduates shifts toward seeing opportunities in forms of business and ventures, its time to provide pathways of monetization. How will they provide services or products for profit? It's essential to now begin building the foundation of how the business will run, what will be sold, and how they will engage with their audience. Parents of these young adults can provide past experienced knowledge and encourage any additional virtual training that may be needed according to the business being built.
It's true – when life gives you lemons, make lemonade. When the economy shifts toward providing fewer opportunities, create them from ideas and visions with the help of others. The government can only offer limited support, and it will never be enough to truly create a living for these graduates. Entrepreneurship could be the key to unlocking the full potential and intervening in the rise of youth unemployment.