According to a study carried out by the National Bureau of Economic Reseach (NBER), “Age and High-Growth Entrepreneurship”, in 2018, new entrepreneurs aged 50 or more are 1.8 times more likely to succeed.
The study, carried out in the United States, highlighted two surprising facts that smash some clichés: the mean age for the creation of a company is 42 and the most successful companies have leaders of 45 on average. In France, according to INSEE, only 17% of new businesses are started by leaders over 50.
Some advantages in comparison with younger generations
And there are several reasons for his success. First, the age, and above all the experience acquired during the career, sometimes in a previous business creation or management, prove to be an undeniable asset when starting a new company. While a young entrepreneur has less to lose but also less experience, a senior (in a professional sense) has the necessary experience to well manage his or her own business and to cope more easily with various problems encountered.
And, unlike some younger entrepreneurs who just crave for their own company but sometimes lack a specific objective, aging brings to light specific goals and a more thoughtful and personal approach of projects.
Another advantage, and a major one: an increase in the resources available. When reaching a certain age, we are more likely to have sufficient financial means accumulated in the course of life. Children are now grown-ups and begin to assume themselves (most of the time!), and the time we have for the project increases.
Finally, the network built throughout its professional career is much more important than the one of a young entrepreneur and becomes an essential asset when searching for customers or partners.
So, whatever your personal reasons, a desire to develop a project that is important to you, to be your own boss or to change profession, dare to start your business at 50!