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Ten Tips for Senior Entrepreneurs
By Judi Henderson-Townsend and Cynthia Mackey
"Seniorpreneurs" Judi Henderson-Townsend, owner of Mannequin Madness, and Cynthia Mackey, founder of Baby Boomer Business Owner.
Paul Solman: Mannequin Madness. That's where we met Judi Henderson-Townsend and Cynthia Mackey -- at Townsend's "body shop" in Oakland, Calif., a few weeks ago. We were shooting a story on "senior" entrepreneurs and though both looked young enough to be my daughters, both are in their 50s. That makes these budding entrepreneurs surprisingly long of tooth by traditional standards.
Traditional standards, however, haven't kept up with the economy, or the Baby Boom, or both. We seem to be entering an era of new firms run by "old" entrepreneurs.
Here are the pair's 10 Tips for Senior Entrepreneurs.
Cynthia Mackey and Judi Townsend: Paul asked that we introduce ourselves. So when we first started our businesses, we were both refugees from corporate America and we were both over 40. Cynthia had a history of entrepreneurship in her family while Judi fell into it. We both started bootstrap ventures, with far more passion than capital.
Cynthia had been working as a technology consultant and saw a niche to fill in training baby boomers to use social media to grow business. She launched BabyBusinessBoomerBusinessOwner.com as a means to do just that. Judi, by contrast, was an accidental entrepreneur. While purchasing a mannequin for an art project, she stumbled across a mannequin vendor who was going out of business, bought his inventory on a whim, and launched MannequinMadness.com.
While we came to our businesses in different ways, we discovered that we were on the leading edge of the same new trend -- senior entrepreneurship. The tips below are based on our experience of being and hiring senior entrepreneurs.
According to SmartBizTrends.com, the new face of start-ups is a senior citizen. If you are thinking of starting a business, here are 10 tips from two "seniorpreneurs".
1. You Are Never Too Old to Start a Business
2. Turn Passion into Profit
3. Build a Community of Positive Influences
4. Make your Workspace Fit Your Lifestyle
5. Staff as you Grow with Freelancers
6. Be Innovative with Your Funding Sources
7. Go Back to Class
8. An Internet Presence is a Must
9. Your Mobile Device is now a Pocket Office
10. Use Social Media for Word of Mouth Marketing
PBS NewsHour Economics Correspondent Paul Solman reports on late bloomers who decided to take the plunge into self-employment. Watch his full report above.
Judi Henderson-Townsend is the owner of Mannequin Madness, an award-winning small business that rents, sells and recycles mannequins.
Cynthia Mackey is a tech-savvy online marketer and founder of BabyBoomerBusinessOwner.com, a website offering courses on how small business owners can use social media to grow their business.
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