This Multimillionaire Millennial Shares the Top 3 Business Mistakes His Generation Makes Here's how to avoid the most common blunders.
Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.
As a millennial who's become a multimillionaire through real-estate investing in the U.K., I have noticed there are a number of things that keep other millennials from reaching their goals. Every generation has its quirks and culture. Some of these traits are helpful, others not so much.
Of course, I am talking in broad generalizations here. Just because someone is born in a certain era, doesn't mean he or she embodies a specific stereotype. That said, in general, millennials have many admirable characteristics, which include caring about their impact on the world and the wider social implications of their actions.
However, there are some aspects of this character type that do hold millennials back in the business world. These are the three most common mistakes I see them making. Whether you are a millennial or not, you should do your best to avoid them.
1. Working hard, but not smart
A lot of people think millennials are not hard workers, but that's often not the case. The real issue is usually that despite working hard, they are not working smart. Often, when millennials get into the business world, they end up essentially being self-employed. In some cases, being self-employed can be like working a job, just without the employee benefits. It is important to systematize a business so that it can grow.
Working smarter means replacing yourself wherever possible in your business. But some millennials have been taught to see the hiring of employees or the contracting of freelancers as an exploitative part of capitalism, rather than the mutually beneficial activity it is. While most millennials don't hold explicitly anti-capitalist views, these ideas are so a part of our culture that they seem to be held at an unconscious level by many. It is important to overcome this programming and be comfortable profiting from your use of capital.
2. Following a traditional educational path
If you are planning to become a doctor, university is the right path for you. But it isn't the right path for everyone. Many millennials have followed a traditional educational path, and this has not led to the success they had hoped for. Many have large student loans for degrees that haven't led to meaningful careers.
Whether someone has been to university or not, it is important to take a different approach to education in business. This could include taking jobs at a lower pay grade to learn the specific skills you need, going on privately run training courses or paying for mentorship.
3. Forgetting it takes money to change the world
One of the great things about the millennial generation is that it wants to change the world. But sometimes millennials seem to forget that this takes money. I have been to Africa on aid missions and have found such trips extremely rewarding, and the work done is very important. But what has been most effective is having the means to fund the work. A percentage of the money I make in my business goes to the charity I founded, The Samuel Leeds Foundation. This approach allows me to help more people than I ever could by directly volunteering.
If you really want to change the world, one of the best things you can do is learn to make money.