By now you may have heard the statistic that young entrepreneurs 30 years old and younger, also known as Gen Y or Millennials, will make up 75% of the global workforce by 2025. How can you prepare your business for the rise of the Millennial generation? You can start by learning about how they view the world because their perception will undoubtedly shape the businesses they lead and the workplaces they create.

The 5th Annual Hiscox DNA of an Entrepreneur Survey gives new insight into the behavior of Millennials. According to the survey, they are the most optimistic about the year ahead for their business. If you are interested in marketing to Millennial entrepreneurs or partnering with their business, these findings offer valuable insights into how to approach these up-and-comers.

The responses of Millennial entrepreneurs can also serve as a point of comparison for evaluating your own business practices or, if you are a Millennial interested in starting your own business, these findings can help you decide whether entrepreneurship is the right fit for you at this point in your life.

  • Millennial entrepreneurs work, on average, 45.7 hours a week; this is 5.5 hours or 13% more than any other age group.
  • The Millennial group has the highest percentage of business owners concerned with the following risks:
    • Not being paid by clients/customers
    • Reputational damage
    • Being sued by a client / customer
    • Theft of plant, stock or materials
    • Damage to my offices, plant or stock by fire
    • Copyright infringement
  • Millennial were the most likely of any age group to start a business "because I couldn’t find a job" and the least likely of any age group to report "I earn more money by having my own business".
  • A higher percentage of Millennials had insurance coverage for Public liability, Employers liability, Office insurance, Management liability, and e-risks insurance than any other age group.
  • Millennials benefited the least from running or working in a small or medium business (SMB). Only 18% of business owners in this group reported being happier compared to more than 47% of business owners in the other groups.
  • The majority of business owners older than 30 reported benefiting from having 'More flexibility over working hours' and 'A greater feeling of being in control of their life' while only 41% of Millennials reported these benefits, the smallest percentage of all the age groups.
  • The majority of small business owners older than 30 spend less than half an hour on dealing with government regulation while the majority of Millennials spent up to four hours a week.
  • 76% of Millennials believe that work includes attending networking events outside of normal working hours is considered, the highest percentage of any age group.
  • Millennials spent the most number of days training than all other age groups. Millennials spent an average of 7.9 days a year, which is 34% more than any other age group.
  • A greater percentage of Millennials sought training in sales/selling skills, management skills, and marketing skills than any other age group. All other age groups
  • Millennials were the most adept at using social media for business purposes. They are more than twice as likely to use social media (or want to use social media) for hiring, recruitment and internal communication than any other age group.

So what do Millennials care about?

Professional growth: Millennial entrepreneurs care about being well trained and invest in cultivating professional development within their business. 

Protecting their business:  Millennial entrepreneurs value protecting their brand and their properties, intellectual and otherwise. They spend time to find information that can impact their business and make the investment to insure their business more than any other age group. 

Hard Work: Millennials work hard! Although there are benefits of entrepreneurship, such as more flexible working hours, they are enjoyed less by Millennials than older entrepreneurs, Millennials worked at least 13% more each week than older entrepreneurs. In addition to seeking out training more often, Millennial entrepreneurs are also more willing to conduct business outside of business hours and add alternative tools like social media.


When making a deal, keep in mind what Millennials care about.

  • Include deal terms that serve to protect their business. Adding a clause about protecting against copyright infringement, slander or late payments can make a contract more appealing to this generation of entrepreneurs and could turn a “No” into a “Yes.”
  • With Millennials making up 75% of the workforce by 2025, partnering with a Millennial entrepreneur might be just what your business needs to reach the Millennial consumer, but stay away from traditional cookie cutter business deals and choose an approach that appeals to this generation. Make sure to incorporate opportunities for growth and learning while protecting their professional interests.
  • If your business offers training programs or courses, look into how much of your client base is comprised of Millennial run companies and how well your marketing initiatives target this demographic. Additionally, content geared towards developing new and competitive skills or tools will be more valued than broad informative topics or emerging perspectives. Because of the ubiquity of social media among Millennials, they will probably be up to date on the new hot topics.

About the Author(s)

Jennifer Shin

Jennifer is the Founder & Principal Consultant of 8 Path Solutions LLC, a NYC based management consultancy and data science startup that aims to bridge the gap between science, technology and industry and tackle real world challenges. | @8PathSolutions | Facebook | More from Jennifer

Founder and Principal Consultant, 8 Path Solutions LLC