Uncertain times are opportune times to invest in entrepreneurship

admin//July 17, 2023

Tiam Rastegar, CEO and executive director for Trailhead and chair of Boise Entrepreneur Week.

Uncertain times are opportune times to invest in entrepreneurship

admin//July 17, 2023

By Tiam Rastegar 

As the executive director of Trailhead and chair of Boise Entrepreneur Week, I have the privilege to help entrepreneurs from all walks of life. Idaho is home to many passionate individuals willing to take control of their lives, define success on their terms and create prosperity for their communities in the process. 

During this time of economic uncertainty, it’s understandable that entrepreneurs and those who support them are concerned about the future. There are some people sitting on the sidelines, hoping for conditions to improve before going all in. But despite market conditions, there are also many new opportunities. Many successful businesses were launched during tough economic times, like Microsoft in 1975, Airbnb in 2008, and Square and Uber in 2009.

An uncertain economy means your business will have less competition and more potential customers. 

Generally, most people start businesses when the economy is doing well. In leaner times, your target market may be less saturated with competitors. As a small business owner, you can quickly position yourself to address gaps in your market. 

Additionally, a changing economy often leads consumers to change their habits and try new things. They’ll want more options, creating opportunities for you to attract customers and earn their loyalty. 

Limitations encourage creativity.

When there are abundant resources for startups, complacency often creeps in and individuals choose the “path of least resistance” rather than building good and resilient businesses. Contrarily, constraints provide a creative challenge that inspires entrepreneurs to produce original ideas for new goods and services. With greater constraints for resources, many startups will focus on the most pressing issues facing society — and deliver innovative solutions in unexpected ways.

Uncertain times create more lean and efficient companies. 

Whether or not they bootstrapped, a startup created during economic uncertainty is constructed from the ground up to be a lean, efficient machine. Because the founders are used to being scrappy and resourceful, they’ll have a competitive advantage from knowing how to operate in suboptimal conditions. Entrepreneurs who start their companies in uncertain times will be prepared to thrive when market conditions improve. 

The best entrepreneurs create economic opportunities in any market — and they are forging ahead and creating new growth. 

The most talented entrepreneurs will excel during any market condition and drive economic growth in their communities. According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, small businesses have added nearly 13 million net new jobs over the past 25 years, which accounts for two out of every three jobs added in our country. However, growth doesn’t happen overnight and it’s critical to nurture our local startups through mentorship, providing access to capital, and events like Boise Entrepreneur Week.  

Building a business during uncertain times isn’t easy, but it’s important to remember that the economy is cyclical. Investing in entrepreneurship now will position Idaho for future growth and prosperity in the years to come. 

— Tiam Rastegar is the CEO and executive director for Trailhead and chair of Boise Entrepreneur Week. Since its inception in 2017, the event and its partners have provided more than $590,000 in cash prizes and funding to help entrepreneurs grow their ventures. Tiam can be reached at [email protected] or (208) 546-8426.