According to science – People Daily, the ideal age to start a business

Wednesday, October 25, 2023, 07:30 | By

Traders at the Gikomba market.  The economy's growth prospects remain weak, with businesses citing the impact of high living costs.  Photo print

Traders at the Gikomba market. The economy’s growth prospects remain weak, with businesses citing the impact of high living costs. Photo print

I recently came across a video on social media where a person was criticizing people in their 30s and older for daring to look for a job. Being a science enthusiast who lives by facts, I wanted to find out if there is a right age to start a successful business.

In a digital age where trends change faster than the seasons, it’s easy to get caught up in the belief that youth is the only currency of innovation. But let’s not be too quick to throw away the wisdom and experience that comes with a few extra trips around the sun.

The key elements of a successful business venture are the same: passion, perseverance and innovation. While these qualities are essential, research has shed light on the importance of age and experience in achieving success. The accumulated knowledge and wisdom gained over time provide a solid foundation on which to build a business empire.

Experience equips you with the ability to make informed decisions, anticipate potential pitfalls and navigate complex situations with finesse. Imagine a world without Colonel Sanders, who started his finger-licking KFC empire at the age of 60. Sanders defied the conventional wisdom that success is only for the young. In the field of entrepreneurship, the question often arises at what age startup founders achieve success.

According to, a study of 2.7 million startups found that entrepreneurs in their 40s and 50s are more likely to start successful companies compared to their younger counterparts.

At the same time, a 60-year-old startup founder is three times more likely to found a successful startup than a 30-year-old! These findings challenge the common belief that youth is a prerequisite for entrepreneurial success.

The study shows that experience and wisdom play a key role in the triumph of midlife entrepreneurs. With a deeper understanding of industry dynamics and an extensive professional network, people in their 40s and 50s are better equipped to handle the challenges of starting and growing a business.

According to the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) report, starting a business has no age limits. The most popular age for people starting a business is 25–34, followed by 35–44. This trend is occurring across economies, including sub-Saharan Africa.

The GEM report also pointed out that starting a business later in life can bring unique benefits, such as rich experience, a strong network and a clearer sense of purpose. However, according to some studies, 18 to 28-year-olds may not be the optimal age range for starting a business, which is why business mentoring is crucial.

According to the Founder Institute, 28 and older is a decent age to start a business, with the optimal age being 35. They argue that people aged 28 to 50 have certain specialist knowledge in management, project implementation and company operation.

The same study found that the most productive entrepreneurs start businesses in industries in which they have previously worked or have expertise. According to various studies, the best age range to start a business is often between 34 and 45 years old. These people have extensive experience and knowledge, thanks to which they are well prepared to cope with the challenges of running a business.

The optimal age to start a business varies depending on your personal situation, risk tolerance and experience, because success is the result of the individual. Rather than focusing on a specific age, it makes more sense to focus on the traits and skills that contribute to entrepreneurial triumph.

Vision, determination, adaptability and resilience are just some of the qualities that can propel founders to success, regardless of their age.

The author is an innovation evangelist and a Ph.D [email protected]

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