Last Thursday I was invited to the Young Entrepreneur Programme awards gala evening in Killarney, Co Kerry. Killarney is at least a 4 hour journey from Dublin and I travelled mostly on the recommendation of Jerry Clifford (co founder of Endeavor). Overall I wasn’t entirely sure sure what we had let ourselves in for but thought it was good chance to meet with with the Endeavor team and maybe meet some interesting people.
On arrival, it became clear that there was more to this than I thought. Many of the new crop of Endeavor companies were present along with Geroge Hook and approx 600 teenagers. The room was packed with TV cameras. I was asked to give a live radio interview and realised then I probably should have read up a little more about the programme. Anyway, the interviewer was kind and steered the discussions in the right direction.
A lot of my time is spent hearing entrepreneurs pitch. Some times they fail to explain who their customer is. Or outline what the underlying customer problem is that they help fix. It was amazing to see folks as younge as 10 years of years nail this and outline ‘real business opportunities’
I’m a hugh fan of including entrepreneurship as part of early stage education. Helping children and teenagers understand there are many career choices including ‘working for yourself’. As Jerry Kinnelly said ‘if you employ just yourself you are a net contributor to your country’.
The following video captures some of the energy from a room filled with 1000 people of all ages and all walks of society. It felt like a mixture of American Idol, Xfactor and Dragon’s Den rolled into 1.