The purpose of a college degree it to help prepare students for a career, but college offers additional career opportunities.
Several world’s most successful businesses, from Facebook to Microsoft to Google were all started by students when they were in college.
Even if your business doesn’t develop into a Fortune 500 company that doesn’t mean you can’t learn valuable skills for the future. Learn to use technology while in college and develop knowledge that helps you succeed in the business world – whether as a business owner or an employee.
Here are 5 ways college students can use technology to build valuable entrepreneurial skills.
1. Use Technology For Better Time Management
College is similar to freelancing, it gives you an opportunity to create a schedule that works best for you. Some people wake up early in the morning bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, ready to hit the ground running. Others fire on all cylinders late at night but are groggy in the morning.
Determine what time of day you are most productive and arrange your schedule around that.
Now it’s a moment to learn to maximize that time to be your productive best.
There are several free options you can use to organize your day that many successful businesses turn to. Start with exploring the options of a Google Calendar to write all your activities and tasks, block time for every one of them and track your progress.
Your schedule might be flexible but getting errands out of your head builds accountability with time.
Seeing 50% of your tasks undone or late shows your time managing skills need improvement. Once you sit down to work or tackle another task, apps like PomoDone can help you manage your time better and improve concentration.
Time is money, and making the most of your time will come in handy later in your career, especially if you ever end up working remotely. Whether you establish your own business or become an employee, time management is key whenever you need to arrange your own schedule.
2. Manage Your Day Like a Project
Launching a business aside, college students have different responsibilities to juggle. From personal commitments, class work, and extracurricular activities, college students are often on the go. Handling all these different responsibilities can be challenging.
Why not kill two birds with one stone by treating each commitment like a project and using a project management system to manage them?
When you put all tasks in one place, you will get a better sense of what is urgent and what can be postponed. Entrepreneurship is the ability to control the chaos and prioritize your chores.
Learning to use a business project management app like Trello can carry you from the classroom to the boardroom. Who says it’s only for the corporate flock? See if you can use the “to do-doing-done” system of Trello to do more and feel accomplished.
This can also be a great time to experiment with different apps to see which one works best for your needs. Popular tools used by corporate teams include Casual, Asana or Basecamp. Best of all, programs like Asana and Casual offer free versions and Basecamp offers a free 30-day trial.
There’s no time like the now to find the right tools for you.
3. Become More Focused and Concentrated With Proper Apps
Starting your own business means you will also have to be your own boss. While that sounds great to many people, it also calls for a Ninja level of self-discipline, focus, and concentration.
Building your own company may pay off handsomely but it often involves burning the midnight oil at work in the beginning, while your friends are off having fun.
While you are focusing on your work or studies, apps like SelfControl and Freedom can help you stay away from social media or other distracting websites that have a way of sucking your time.
Besides minimizing distractions, technology can also boost concentration.
You can use noise-canceling headphones with no music to block out disturbances around you, or you can turn to background music apps created for focus boosting.
Here are options to consider:
4. Learning To Control Your Budget With Tech
It may be a long time before you have to pay employees a salary. That doesn’t mean you can’t learn to control your cash flow.
Use money management apps which will help you overview your expenses and spending habits.
These are some of them to try:
- Debt Payoff Planner
Being burdened with student debt is not unusual but becoming financially literate and using all possible tools at your disposal to pay it off ahead of time is.
A $50,000 starting salary can seem like a small fortune; until you sit down and determine what your take-home pay would be each week after you take out taxes and other expenses such as medical and dental insurance.
In addition, you may feel you can start a business on the $2,000 you saved up but seeing hard facts and figures in front of you may change your mind. The information about 80% of all startups failing within the first 18 months is widespread.
Ultimately, the cause of all business failure is running out of money. One of the best things you can do if you want to run your own business is getting a solid understanding of how far a dollar will go and how much it costs to live in the “real world.”
A Final Thought
There may be no better time than college to launch your own business and master the tools that will serve your career later.
Besides all tech tools at your disposal, you are surrounded by a veritable army of potential mentors who can advise you on almost every aspect of starting a business or running a company.
Use their knowledge as much as you can.
One day you may have to pay handsomely for the same thing. It may be true that 8 out of 10 startups fail, but your college years give you time to fail fast, so the business you start in college might be the one that makes it.