Do entrepreneurs need a degree?

So you want to start a business and you’re wondering: Do entrepreneurs need a degree? Like an MBA? Do entrepreneurs need college AT ALL? Well I want to share my thoughts and experience on this topic.

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Summary:

So you want to start or grow your business, but you’re feeling doubtful:

  • Do entrepreneurs need a degree?
  • Do entrepreneurs need college?
  • Do entrepreneurs need mba?

I wanted to share my perspective on this, so stay tuned.

Hey Impact Maker! Kamila Gornia here, founder of Heart Behind Hustle, where we help impact-driven entrepreneurs grow and scale their business online through aligned marketing strategies that turn their brand into a movement.

Here’s the deal…

I’ve seen some beginner coaches and expert worry about growing a business because they don’t have a business degree… or didn’t go to college at all.

Can you be successful when you don’t have a fancy degree?

Uh.. I don’t know. Why don’t we ask:

Sir Richard Branson, founder of the Virgin Group which is now made up of over 400 companies and he himself being valued at $4.6 billion.

OR

Bill Gates, who is now valued at over $80 billion dollars, after having built Microsoft.

or

Debbi Fields, who started Mrs. Fields Chocolate Chippery with no business experience, and went on to generate 400 million dollars in yearly revenue at the time of her selling the company in 1990s.

But yeah, we all want to be those people but most people won’t get there. SO, I wanted to share my perspective on this too.

Full disclosure, I do have a degree. I have a double Bachelors in Psychology and Integrated Marketing Communications.

And while that’s my background, that’as not the case for most of my clients.

But anyway…

There are a few things more important for entrepreneurs than a degree:

  1. Your Portfolio

I started my first business at 19 when I was just starting college. I was a photographer and none of my clients cared whether I was in arts school or whatever. They only cared about my work and portfolio. Like, was I actually GOOD?

Then, to go deeper – it was like who did I work with? I didn’t work with any famous people or anything but my work and skills were enough to get me consistent gigs every week to help pay for my lifestyle while I was in college.

  1. Your Results

This is similar to the previous one but what if you’re a coach or something where you can’t have a portfolio? Well, you can take it differently and talk about RESULTS people get from working with you. This is especially if you’re a coach or consultant.

What did you help your clients with, and how did they feel afterwards? Collect testimonials and case studies, especially if they’re on video. They will do wonders to make new clients trust you and want to work with you.

My clients literally never asked me about where I went to school or if I have a degree, but yet I consistently get clients to pay me anywhere from $3500 up to $20,000 to work with me.

  1. Your Visibility

The best way to be taken seriously without having a degree is to get featured on reputable sites and publications. There’s nothing that elevated my authority status more than being featured in Huffington Post, Forbes, Inc, and Entrepreneur.com – these are sites people know and trust. Getting featured there, plus on other people’s websites and podcasts is like a badge of credibility you can wear proudly.

Other ways to show visibility is to speak on stages, host your own events, write books, and so on. Basically expand your visibility where people can see that you are LIVING your work and DOING IT OFTEN. That speaks volumes.

  1. Your Certainty

Nothing – literally NOTHING – will get you clients faster than your confidence and certainty in your work. IF you KNOW that you KNOW that you KNOW that you are great at what you do, and you know your clients will see a transformation as a result of working with you, and you know your worth… your prospective clients will too.

You have to be a leader. So show up as one. Lead with confidence. Talk about what you do. Don’t be shy. People WANT to know. That’s why they reached out in the first place!

  1. Your life experience

Lastly, it’s so funny because even though I do marketing consulting and business coaching for clients, I use probably 5% of what I actually learned in college in my own business. Everything else came from my own life experience, as well as self-education through online courses and programs, and working with mentors and coaches.

The beauty of not having business experience is that you can hire or learn from someone who does! So you can create your own shortcut to success and get into six figures WAY faster than you would on your own.

That’s literally the ONLY thing that helped me get there with my coaching business just a year after starting my business. And it’s why my previous businesses didn’t… I had no prior business experience AND had no education on how to grow that I could use to help me.

So, hopefully this video gives you some confidence that you absolutely CAN success as an entrepreneur without a degree or college.

I mean – that’s obviously as long as you’re not doing something that requires a legitimate certification like being a doctor or an attorney or a CPA… that’s another story. But you still don’t need a BUSINESS degree for that.

I look forward to hearing what you think in the comments. What do you think? Do you need a business degree to succeed as an entrepreneur?

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I look forward to seeing you in the next one!