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70.7% of the apprentices questioned confirmed they feel positive about entrepreneurship in the UK today

• The Entrepreneur’s Circle and Skillwise interviewed apprentices to understand views on entrepreneurship, in response to recent Google survey that indicated a lack of appetite
• 70% of Skillwise apprentices feel positive about entrepreneurship today
• Over half would consider launching a start-up in the future

Off the back of a YouGov survey by Google, which reported how only one fifth of people aged between 15-18 would consider starting their own business*, The Entrepreneur’s Circle (The EC), conducted an informal poll with young adults participating in the Skillwise Apprenticeship Programme and identified a very different attitude from those already exposed to small businesses and entrepreneurs.

41 apprentices aged between 16 and 24 participated in the Skillwise poll, which found that 51% said they were “very likely” or “likely” to launch their own start-up in the future, compared to just 22% of those involved in the Google study. While 70.7% of the apprentices questioned confirmed they feel positive about entrepreneurship in the UK today.

In comparison, when asked their views about starting a business, 51% of Skillwise apprentices said it would a “responsible” decision, compared to 56% of Google’s YouGov pool suggesting it would be “risky” and a further 11% considering it to be “reckless”. Starting a business is however not seen as high risk by the majority of apprentices interviewed, with 58% perceiving it only as a moderate risk and a further 10% stating it as low risk, compared to the YouGov research that reported how 45% of females and 39% of boys “fear failure”.

One major differentiating factor that stands out between the groups is exposure to business environments: in the Google study, a third of respondents added that they didn’t know anyone that had launched their own company, while over 90% of apprentices said they know someone who has launched, or is running their own business.

Nigel Botterill, founder of The Entrepreneur’s Circle said: “Almost all of the apprentices we spoke to have been working in small businesses via the Skillwise programme for at least three months. It’s clear that as such they already have a very different attitude to entrepreneurship. What this tells us is that we’ve got to expose apprentices to small businesses as they are the life blood of the economy. Over 47,000 businesses have launched in the last month alone** and the reality is that a significant percentage will flourish and succeed; therefore it is in everyone’s interests to get apprenticeships into small businesses. Skillwise and The EC connect business owners and apprentices every day and we can clearly see the benefits from both sides of the fence.”

Further findings identified that 58.5% of Skillwise apprentices felt that having their own business would make their future more stable, while 73% said that they would like to be in control of their own destiny and "to be my own boss", with a further 70% suggesting that growing a successful, profitable business would give them real pride.

Added Ian Simms, Director of Skillwise: “We look to offer something different and place apprentices with entrepreneurs who are actively looking to grow their business; this means apprentices are able to support this growth and, as such, they too personally thrive. Our retention figures demonstrate the value of this, as 80% of apprentices retain their job and go into full-time employment following their first year. Our placements aren’t simply ‘learning episodes’ but a real opportunity for them to make a difference and deliver real value. For example, we’ve had apprentices on the Skillwise and EC programme deliver a return on investment of over 500%; I think this clearly shows that young people are positive towards business and entrepreneurism when given the right opportunities.”

The EC is the UK’s largest membership organisation dedicated to helping businesses grow. Since launching in 2010, it has helped over 7,500 UK businesses become more successful via teaching, training and mentoring. In particular, The EC’s step-by-step Implementation Plans are designed as the ultimate ‘how to’ guides and support owners in all aspects of successfully growing a business.

As a partner of the Skillwise Apprenticeship Programme, The EC has placed 177 young adults into work within small businesses across the UK and provided them with training from the best marketing minds in the country.

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Notes to Editors:

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About Skillwise

Skillwise is a training and support organisation that helps all people with ambition and motivation to learn new skills in business. It is dedicated to helping small businesses recruit bright talented individuals that can help change the future of their business.

About The Entrepreneurs Circle

Launched in 2010 by business growth expert and successful entrepreneur, Nigel Botterill, The Entrepreneurs Circle (The EC) is the UK's largest membership organisation dedicated to helping businesses grow. It exists to educate, motivate, help and inspire business owners to achieve more than they ever thought possible. It does this by providing the tools and the knowledge to help business owners take control of their business via teaching, coaching, mentoring and through an extensive EC community, where thousands of like-minded business owners come together online and offline to share knowledge, ideas and insights.

Editor’s Contact:

Peppa Sheridan, Peptalk Communications
01787 313822

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