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Education or Entrepreneur

(45 Posts)
eliza Mon 20-Jan-14 16:04:39

Today I met a fully qualified corporate Lawyer that decided that he no longer wanted to be a Lawyer, not long after graduating, and decided to set up a business with a loan instead!.

I really can not understand why he would go trough all that difficult learning and waste all of that time to then turn around and decide to open up a business--which is something he could have done anyway and without any kind of education.

I personally think its mad and really do not understand it at all.And would really like to hear what Gransnetters think as I do believe most GN's are educated.

Thank you

JessM Mon 20-Jan-14 16:07:22

Thank goodness some young people are doing this - we need new businesses to create the jobs of the future. I think it is not a valid assumption to say that you can set up a business without any kind of education. There is a lot to it, including an appreciation of the law and how it applies to the world of business. Good luck to him.

eliza Mon 20-Jan-14 16:15:24

Hi Jess it is not an assumption that you can set up a business without an education--as my cousin started up a business alone and with no formal education--as did many people, in fact most successful business people are un educated, for eg Duncan Bannatyne and there are many many more.

durhamjen Mon 20-Jan-14 16:38:32

But like Jess says, he will understand the law as it applies to businesses. Many people who set up businesses have to find out the hard way.
If he does not succeed in the business he starts, at least he will have tried. What annoys me is that the government try to get young people to become self-employed as a way of cutting back on unemployment figures when, if there were enough jobs available, they would be employed by someone else.
I have a degree in education, so are you saying that I should have stayed a teacher instead of setting up two businesses as I wasted my education?
My son did a degree in engineering, then could not get a job as an engineer, so he now works for a local authority, but he uses his engineering skills and as a by-product has learnt a lot of law. These days not many people stay in one job for life.

mollie Mon 20-Jan-14 16:40:32

The education won't go to waste - he can fall back on it if need be. As you say 'after all that education', perhaps he needs to do something different for a while. A law degree and training is a long haul and there's no guarantee of a good job at the end, perhaps he's just fallen out of love with his original plan?

eliza Mon 20-Jan-14 17:11:15

durgham No I think you did the right thing in setting up your business's

I am just soo surprised that this chap changed careers so soon after graduating it was just around a year later, to do something that he could have done without spending 8 years of his life learning to be a Lawyer.
I am personally baffled

eliza Mon 20-Jan-14 17:13:21

mollie, you are right of course, it is something that he can fall back on.

I find it hard to imagine though that you can spend so much time on something and work so hard for it and then just disgard it.

I had to work very hard for my degree as I did it later in life and so maybe this is why I am baffled by it all smile

harrigran Mon 20-Jan-14 17:22:28

I too know someone who qualified as a lawyer but is using his knowledge of the law to work as a policeman. I feel the training would be a good background to having your own business.

Soutra Mon 20-Jan-14 17:23:33

Is it breaching confidentiality to ask what motivated you to do this degree and what use you made of it?

Soutra Mon 20-Jan-14 17:25:03

Maybe I meant anonymity so not prying, just interested as you are not the only GNetter I have come across to have done a degree later in life.

eliza Mon 20-Jan-14 18:58:37

Soutra thats ok I dont mind saying--Well I always wanted a career but somehow it just did not happen for me and I then went on to get married and have a family, which I very much enjoyed and have absolutely no regrets, but then when my children no longer needed me I found myself thinking, well what now for me, I always wanted to teach and used my degree to do that.

I felt still young enough to go for it and so I did, but it did feel a little uncomfortable studying with mostly young people but I wanted it badly, so I did not allow anything to get in the way and just soldiered on, and I am very proud of myself because to be honest I never stick to anything!!

Soutra Tue 21-Jan-14 07:22:14

Well done!

Iam64 Tue 21-Jan-14 08:49:25

congrats Eliza on using the gap left by children growing up so well.

My experience is that lots of young people are not going into the area of work their degree qualifies them for. Law is an area subject to so many changes currently, legal aid etc and there are, it seems, more folks with law degrees than there are vacancies. Working for a degree shows any future employer you have commitment, as well as being bright enough. Young people have to weight A levels towards a degree choice, yet they're 16 at the time of choosing.

FlicketyB Tue 21-Jan-14 14:13:04

You choose your university subject between the ages of 16 - 18 and with the best will in the world and with input from family friends and careers advisors the choice can be wrong, because between between 18 and 21 an individual changes a lot, they, mature there views of what they want to do, the course they thought they understood turns out to be other than it appeared. Even if they graduate happy with their degree the world of the career they had planned may turn out not to be what they expected it to be so they chop and change until they find what suits them.

The idea that a degree is wasted because setting up a business is something anyone can do reminds me of the argument against educating women, education was wasted on them because all they were going to do was marry and raise children.

A university education teaches you to research, analyse and assess information. These skills are invaluable when setting up in business. It is a help when assessing market information, dealing with banks, lawyers and accountants, negotiating leases, perhaps learning quickly the skills of a new craft, say cheese making. Read the stories of successful business men who did start with little education. How often once they got the business off the ground its continual growth was highly dependent on professional advisors with the necessary degrees and professional training.

No education at any level is ever anything but a life enhancer, however you choose to earn your living.

durhamjen Tue 21-Jan-14 14:23:26

I always used to tell children that it is important to enjoy what you learn Do not go to university because you want to get a better job. Do it because you enjoy learning. Then you will not be disappointed, or as disappointed.
One of my sons is a trading standards officer. It's amazing how much law he has to learn. In fact two officers who have just started both have law degrees. He is the one who has a degree in engineering.

goldengirl Tue 21-Jan-14 15:35:45

It's been my mantra throughout life that no experience is ever wasted. Much to the chagrin of my parents I went from one course to another and to another and enjoyed my different 'careers' and certainly my previous experiences paid off. I wish this new business person every success. He will learn a whole new set of skills to add to the ones he's already got

eliza Tue 21-Jan-14 19:30:09

I understand a little more now, that education is never wasted, but still think he is bonkers to study to become a lawyer then not do it--its not like it took him a couple of years, it takes around 8 yrs!!!!

When my son was at Uni doing his degree we met alot of his friends and the majority of them had no focus and just wanted t stay on and go to Uni because they were not looking forward to going into the real world as they would put it.

Oh well education is always a good thing what ever the thoughts behind are

Thanks for you comments they were very interesting.

Gransnet is great if you need a bit of the old intelligence he he smile

Galen Tue 21-Jan-14 19:34:50

There's no money in law now legal aid has gone.

eliza Tue 21-Jan-14 19:51:13

But what about all the firms in The City?

eliza Tue 21-Jan-14 19:52:21

And the need for Criminal Lawyers and Corporate Lawyers?

Surely there will always be a need for Criminal Law?

Ana Tue 21-Jan-14 20:05:59

Yes, but there are dozens and dozens of law graduates every year, and they all have to start from the bottom and work their way up (if they can get a foot in the door to start with!). Junior lawyers don't get paid a huge amount.

JessM Wed 22-Jan-14 09:06:36

I think times have changed jendurham with 43% of young people going to Uni, be very careful what you study - unless you want to be unemployed or working on a call centre earning £16k.
What are the options for a law graduate:
be a solicitor (divorces, criminals or property)
Become a barrister
Corporate law
increasingly - the police
If at the age of 21 you have looked carefully at all these and none really appeals (they all have disadvantages a plenty) then don't, whatever you do, throw yourself into them and be miserable.
My cousin was a property solicitor and hated it, she is now back to her first love and is doing a PhD in English literature and loving it.
I really wish more bright young graduates would go into business - this is what the country really needs above all else if it is to thrive in the future.

Dragonfly1 Wed 22-Jan-14 09:31:06

A friend of my DD did a law degree and worked in the corporate law dept of a firm of solicitors for three years after which she was made redundant. She couldn't find another job, set up a small business using her gained knowledge and is doing well. Jobs in the legal profession aren't always easy to find in these days of belt-tightening.

Humbertbear Wed 22-Jan-14 17:43:40

We are training too many lawyers and many of them cannot get jobs. As has already been said, no education is ever wasted. Our GP only works part time because he is a sculptor and that is where his heart is. I should add that he is also a superb GP but one old lady did ask him how his parents felt about him 'wasting' his training

FlicketyB Thu 23-Jan-14 16:27:01

You do not need to become a lawyer just because you have a degree in law and many don't. A degree does not have to be narrowly occupational and law graduates go into a wide range of other degrees. My god daughter joined an insurance company and found it a very useful degree to have.