Traditionally, the smartest students have sought a career in finance because the classic story of the superstar banker or fund manager making tens of millions of dollars per year was too salivating to pass up.
Its however high time talented people actually followed their true interests rather than the masses because the economy will benefit in the long-term if we have the brightest minds taking the risks to make new and bold ideas happen.
Right now is the perfect opportunity to liberate top talent from the great opportunity cost of being brave and starting something new.
This Is Why;
(1) Bright minds will want to create value rather than move money.
The migration of the brightest and most motivated minds to the world of finance an industry based on moving money around and devoid of value-creation – made the notion of entrepreneurship and starting a small business seem sub-par. Suddenly, as the economy suffers, the brilliant minds are considering “something different.” The risk of pursuing a new idea or jumping into a friend’s start-up effort seems a little more tolerable or, dare we say, safe.
(2) The value of experience will go up as near-term financial rewards dwindle.
There are too many stories of brilliant people putting up with menial analyst duties at high-powered finance institutions simply because the money was good. Luckily, the downfall of financial markets has made the prospect of an “experiential education” a bit more attractive. After all, the connections and experience gained in a start-up environment – or the dream industry that always fascinated you – may prove to be invaluable, even if the compensation is just the insight and knowledge you gain.
The start-up world now has a tremendous opportunity to attract and hire top talent. And, if we have our smartest people creating new products and services, our economy will thrive in the long run.
(3) Smaller investments with higher expectations will empower small businesses.
In the current economic climate, the companies flush with cash look bloated. Smaller, more select investments that will require lots of time to evolve seem more reasonable to investors. Impatience and a quick exit strategy are replaced with a desire for sustainability. As a result, entrepreneurs manage their expenses more carefully. Companies are run more thoughtfully and responsibly. The current economy woes provide a more reasonable pace for the growth of a small business – and sometimes patience is a lucrative virtue.
We must recognize the many new and exciting opportunities before us. Our economy and country can only thrive if we CREATE NEW STUFF.