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The Government Doesn’t Understand You

Date - 15 March 2016/ Category - Facts Of Life
Facts of life

The government might tell you that they encourage entrepreneurship and provide support but they don’t.

It’s not that they don’t try to help, it’s simply that they fail to understand the kind of help that’s needed.

Much like driving down the motorway the wrong way, as much we might be guilty of doing too many of the wrong things to try to build our businesses, the government are guilty of putting funding and resources in the wrong places.

I don’t want to get into an argument about whether the government is good or bad at their job, the sheer fact that they want to help is a good thing, but the problem is that they don’t really understand the world of the entrepreneur.

They choose to put their funding into localised help centers that employ people who have never been entrepreneurs and learnt all they know from text books or as an experience of working for people.

Like glorified admin teams, they help businesses tick the right boxes to get access to funding that serves only to line the pockets of so called experts that teach leadership or design brochures.

In essence they are funding a whole industry of wastage that would be better applied elsewhere.

Instead of spending money on an industry of hangers on the government would be better served to invest in the entrepreneurial community instead.

Money should be diverted to the people that have experience in starting businesses without running the risk that it is used to employ an army of advisers.

One of the biggest things that would have helped me was by giving me access to experienced mentors, ones that run their own business but in fact paid them a fee to help other people start up.

When I started my business the desire to protect my cash flow was met by taking on huge costs, such as telephones, broadband and getting a roof over my head.

If the government created state up incubators that helped protect cash flow, the potential for start-ups would infinitely increase.

Add to this a system of investment and support for entrepreneurs financially and a real start up culture could be created.

When you start a business you’re taking a huge risk in order to not just help yourself but employ others and pay more taxes. Contrast to this the fact that we provide social housing and benefits to people who don’t work and it seems odd to me that we don’t give our entrepreneurs a similar level of support.

Finally then on top of covering basic costs, providing financial support and paying for mentors, I would encourage the government to secure all this help on the shares of businesses that are set up.

If the business works then the government can sell their shareholding, if it doesn’t then the government loses its investment just like the entrepreneur does too.

If the government wants to support start-ups, it should take the same risks we do.

As it stand now though there is simply a culture of hangers on that build businesses based on the grants the can receive to provide their services to start ups.

It’s a sad fate of affairs that supporting this infrastructure is more important to the actual goal of start businesses. So called incubators look only to grab headlines and tick boxes that show they are supporting businesses in the ways that are measurable to their superiors.

Because they don’t know what a good business idea is, they fall for PR stunts and prioritise the businesses that look like the next facebook simply because it’s in fashion.

Government support is simply not good enough and no one cares.

Chapter Summary:

• Entrepreneurs need paid mentors
• Start-up centers should cover basic costs like broadband, telephones and rent
• Entrepreneurs should get benefits
• The government should invest in start-ups and reap the rewards too

Read our next blog post “Good ideas make bad businesses”.