Weekly Roundup is a McNair Center series compiling and summarizing the week’s most important Innovation and Entrepreneurship news.
Here is what you need to know about entrepreneurship this week:
The Associated Press
Entrepreneurs might expect policy shifts under a Trump presidency. Trump has released his plan for his first 100 days in office. However, much uncertainty over his policies and objectives remains. The battle over health care and immigration reform, taxes, regulation, the federal minimum wage, trade deals and federal contracts will be fought in a Republican-led congress that has not always agreed with the President-elect’s proposals.
David Levin, CEO of the American Sustainable Business Council, expressed the concern of many small business owners in the US: “What we don’t know is whether or not there is a sincere interest in supporting small and medium-size enterprises in this country — rebuilding Main Street, rebuilding manufacturing.”
Ruth Simon, Author, Wall Street Journal
With the uncertainty of the election partly resolved, some small business owners have said that they are ready to begin investing and hiring. According to a recent Vistage Worldwide poll of 380 small business owners, 49 percent of respondents said that the election of the outcome had improved their outlook for the economy. Nearly 20 percent stated that the election results encouraged them to increase their hiring or capital investment. Many point to the prospect of lower taxes and healthcare costs as sources for their optimism.
Not all business owners surveyed viewed the election’s outcome positively. 35 percent responded that their outlook for the economy had worsened. Roughly 20 percent planned on decreasing hiring and investment. Many are wary of Trump’s tough position on immigration, which could make the search for high-skilled workers more costly.
Ruth Simon and Paul Overberg, Authors, The Wall Street Journal
According to data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2014 Survey of Entrepreneurs, black entrepreneurs are less likely to ask for capital when they need it. When they do ask, black entrepreneurs are not as likely to receive the full amount that they requested.
Black entrepreneurs in 2014 were three times more likely than white entrepreneurs to say that they were in need of additional financing but opted not to apply for it. Compared with 74 percent of white entrepreneurs, only 46 percent of black entrepreneurs received the full amount of funding that they had requested.
Simon cites challenges in access to capital and funding as obstacles for black entrepreneurs who are trying to grow their businesses. According to Alicia Robb, a senior fellow from the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, “Across the board, blacks have higher denial rates, even after controlling for credit and wealth.”
Jason Albanese, Contributor, Inc.
Jason Albanese, CEO and founder of Centric Digital, offers advice to startups looking to be the next Google or Facebook by redefining their industry. Revolutionary startups are often some of the most lucrative and successful in their field.
Market-shaking startups frequently fail to maximize their potential because market and operational disruptions often go hand in hand. Disruptive startups need to take time to grow at their own pace. Entrepreneurs cannot afford to rush the incubation period.
Most market ecosystems eventually find a new equilibrium; Airbnb and Uber recently experienced this within their industries. Albanese recommends that market-shifters foster and embrace change within company culture. Adaptivity, creativity and agility are instrumental in introducing and surviving a market disruption.
Sam Cohen, Contributor, Huffington Post
The life of a freelance entrepreneur is uncertain and irregular. For example, daily operations lack the typical structure and comfort level that most industry jobs offer. On the other hand, self-employed entrepreneurs get to set their own work schedules and define the rules and best practices for their companies.
Despite the obvious discrepancy between freelance entrepreneurship and corporate culture, Sam Cohen recommends that entrepreneurs borrow business practices, such as building up cash reserves and establishing a performance review process, from bigger industry players.