Today’s world is changing quickly, and educators sometimes struggle to keep up with rapid leaps forward in trends and technology. Educators work on preparing students for a world where 85% of their future jobs don’t exist yet. The only way to do this is by embracing and anticipating what comes next for students.
Edupreneurs are paving the way for the future of teaching. They help students and educators alike cope with the dramatic changes expected to rock the foundation of traditional learning in the coming years. Here, we're going to explain just what an edupreneur is and how you can succeed as one.
What Is an Edupreneur?
An edupreneur is an entrepreneur who focuses on the education sector. Also known as educational entrepreneurs or teacherpreneurs, Edupreneurs turn teaching into a business. They use their knowledge or expertise to create an in-demand learning product.
Many edupreneurs start as teachers or other members of the education system. They want to make an impact on students at home and around the world. Entrepreneurs who've worked in their area of interest are 125% more likely to succeed than those who haven't.
Entrepreneur to Edupreneur
As author Lois Wyse once said: “The only people in the world who can change things are those who can sell ideas.” An entrepreneur, at their core, is a person who wants to make the world a better place by filling a demand. It could mean creating a new product or introducing a niche service.
Edupreneurship comes into play when an entrepreneur places their focus on students and teachers. They aim to create products and services that will help educators and students face a rapidly changing society.
Why Specialize in Education as a Business?
There are many different reasons that an entrepreneur would choose to focus on the education industry. For many, their primary motivation is a drive to help students and teachers succeed. An overwhelming majority (98%) of teachers believe that education is about making a difference in the world, one child at a time. However, there are other personal and professional reasons why it's beneficial to specialize in education.
Edupreneurs help people change their lives by making education more relevant and more accessible. They don’t just aim to teach students but to show them how to learn. Conversely, they also aim to help teachers reach their full potential by providing the right resources.
Earn a Passive Income
These days, eight out of every ten teachers feel undervalued. Edupreneurship is a way that they can make a passive income on top of their salary, or even start a more lucrative career altogether. With the right idea and carefully planned execution, you can make a living as an edupreneur.
Climb the Career Ladder
Teachers who have made it in the entrepreneurial field often see their reputation improve within the education community. Having a successful venture can give you more authority and credibility amongst your peers.
Embrace the Modern Era
Traditional teaching is no longer the only way for eager students to get an education. With recent advances in technology, more and more people are demanding access to online learning. It's easier than ever for edupreneurs to reach a worldwide audience.
What Types of Opportunities are There?
There are ample opportunities for edupreneurs to create a new niche product, service, or resource for teachers and students. You can opt for more traditional ventures, or base your ideas on emerging technologies. Some of the most profitable products and programs include:
- Organizing a seminar circuit or face-to-face training workshops
- Creating online courses or training programs
- Becoming a personal trainer or coach-for-hire for educators
- Building your own online or in-person learning academy
- Hosting masterclasses or webinars
- Creating a novel learning app for mobile devices
- Releasing a book, magazine, or periodical
- Starting a niche learning or teaching blog
- Creating tutorial videos and how-to guides
You may also be able to bring your ideas to life through schools, higher learning institutions, or education-related corporations. Many of these places embrace the idea of working with edupreneurs. New ideas and technology can help bring more money into the school and improve the educational experience from all sides.
What Are the Common Challenges eLearning Startups Face?
While becoming an entrepreneur can be a rewarding and even lucrative adventure, the road to success isn’t without its challenges. There are several common problems that many edupreneurs often face when it comes to eLearning opportunities. Fortunately, these obstacles can be easy to overcome with the right approach.
While it can help to have teaching experience as an edupreneur, it’s not necessarily a requirement. There are plenty of training resources available to help you get organized and learn more about the education sector:
- Go online for articles and courses on teaching techniques.
- Take education classes at your local community college or university.
- Get active in your local school system.
- Talk to teachers and other educators about their experience.
- Attend a seminar for teachers.
One issue that many new entrepreneurs face is financing, regardless of their industry. Fewer than 10% end up qualifying for and using business loans from the bank. Instead, over a fifth of new startups pull finances from their personal savings, while around 6% use business profits and assets for funding.
Remember that initial financing will only take you but so far. The goal is to begin earning a profit from your product. Before committing to any financing options, you should do your research and make sure that you’re creating something for which people will be willing to pay.
Identifying a need, finding the right audience, and connecting with that audience are additional challenges edupreneurs face. Just because you have a great idea doesn’t mean people will be willing to pay for it, or that demand is high enough to make your business venture profitable.
How to Succeed
Winston Churchill once claimed that “Success is walking from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm.” The entrepreneurial mindset is all about learning to embrace mistakes as a vital part of success. Instead of dwelling on their setbacks, entrepreneurs know how to treat them as a learning opportunity.
However, if you're going to become an entrepreneur, you need more than just force of will. You need to know how to run a successful business using skills such as budgeting, branding, and marketing.
You also need to know your market and map out a viable strategy before you take any action. You should learn about instructional design and different learning methods. It's best to embrace active rather than passive learning, engaging teachers and students with your ideas.
If you want to succeed as an entrepreneur in the field of education, you need to care as much about the success of students and teachers as you do your own. With the end-user in mind, you can create something that will revolutionize schooling as we know it.