For several years Amway, a network marketing company that, like Forever, is also part of the Direct Selling Association, has published a report that looks into the current attitudes towards entrepreneurship. This year’s report, the 2016 Amway Global Entrepreneurship Report (AGER), presents some encouraging results for the network marketing industry.
It seems that there has been a shift over the past few years in how people view employment, and the want to become self-employed or independent from an employer is now on the rise. This trend is supported by some of the statistics shared in the AGER study. The study interviewed a sample of 50,861 men and women aged 14-99 in 45 countries all over the world, and from this group it is clear that the global view towards the idea of entrepreneurship is predominantly positive. In fact, 77% of those involved in the study view this career choice positively and 43% can imagine starting their own business. These statistics are even more impressive when the results for Great Britain alone are considered. The study showed that 83% now consider entrepreneurship as a positive career choice and of this, 44% would consider starting their own business.
The idea that entrepreneurship now sits on the ‘five-year-plan’ for many individuals is exciting for companies like Forever. It puts network marketing in a strong position and it won’t be long before more and more people realise that network marketing could be the next step in their career goal. After all, Forever is able to offer these individuals an opportunity they desire; one with flexible working hours, uncapped income and the chance to be their own boss! The benefits that stem from a Forever business are certainly attractive, and the AGER report confirms that these motivators are the factors that drive people in Britain towards entrepreneurship. Independence from an employer secured the top position with 49% of the vote, followed by self-fulfilment at 39%. The idea that the role offers better compatibility of family, leisure time and career came in third with 27%. Interestingly, the flexibility aspect that means a better work-life balance was a higher motivator in Britain compared to the majority of the rest of the world.
Bob Parker, Country Manager of Forever UK, Ireland and Iceland says, “Home entrepreneurship is now an acceptable way of making money. We are seeing younger people who look at entrepreneurship as a solution. They see it as an opportunity, particularly in this digital age where you can work on your laptop from anywhere in the world. This younger generation want flexibility. They don’t necessarily want to work nine-to-five in an office anymore. Network marketing has the potential to offer this flexibility.”
Critics could easily argue that these motivators are only focused on the end goal, rather than the hard work that is required to get to that point; however, the report also examined attitudes towards some of the activity required by entrepreneurs and it found that 64% of British respondents feel comfortable searching for and acquiring customers and 47% would not let their family or friends dissuade them from starting their own business.
Recruitment, networking and building a retail customer base are obviously critical elements of the direct selling industry and therefore this is another positive statistic that works in Forever’s favour. It is also extremely encouraging to learn that negatively directed towards the budding business-builder is not necessarily going to impact their pursuit. Dr. David B. Audretsch, professor and director of the Institute for Development Strategies at the Indiana University School of Public and Environmental Affairs, agrees and says, "This year's report reaffirms the growing positivity we've seen toward entrepreneurship… it is clear that positive attitudes toward entrepreneurship show no signs of receding.” (Audretsch, 2016)
We are entering into a new generation of working life and a fresh optimism is being placed upon the idea of entrepreneurship and self-employment that was unheard of just ten years ago. It’s time to recognise that the economy, societal expectations and educational paths no longer dictate one’s future career, and instead it is the journey of self-fulfilment, flexibility and achieving one’s potential that drives those to start a business and make it on their own.
Click here to find out more about AGER and to view the full results.