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People have different reactions towards the thought of changing career paths at 50. Some are excited, while some are scared and others are unsure. Many question the need to switch to another job at this specific age since they do not have much left until retirement. The reactions all depend on the point of view. One can see the years they have left at their current job as ‘a short time’ while another may see them as ‘an eternity’. Most people looking to change careers agree with the latter thought. They either do not like the work they are doing or they want to switch to something they like more. The question is: is it possible? It may be difficult, but yes, it is definitely possible to change career paths at 50.

The hardest is to decide whether to stay at their current job or to leave. After passing all these years at the same company, climbing up the ladder and becoming an expert at a specific work, choosing to switch can be very difficult. Many are scared to move out of their comfort zones, which is a perfectly normal reaction. However, time passes as people hesitate with their decision. Statistics show that workers who launch themselves directly into the job search are more likely to get employed than those who prefer to wait for the right timing.

After taking the leap, the difficulties that one may face include fierce competition, technological disadvantage and financial liabilities. There is a very big number of highly qualified young job seekers on the market. Technology will also always be a problem for the older generation. This applies to those who are 50 now as well as those who will be 50 in twenty years. Looking for a new job is also time consuming, a period which may create a dent in years of savings. However, older job seekers retain certain advantages over their younger counterparts. Their most important plus point is experience. Even if they are changing career paths, they have acquired various skills over the years. These abilities will surely be useful. High-level skills and experience in the work environment can highlight a CV and increase the chances of getting employed.

Here are some tips that can be helpful when deciding to change career paths at 50:

1. Know what you want to do and what you can do

It’s important to be both positive and realistic when choosing to switch jobs. Taking the time to think about what one wants to do and what one can do is a crucial step.

2. Weigh the money implications

While money should not be the main goal when changing careers, it should still be on the list of things to consider. After all, a certain amount of income will be necessary to pay bills and afford some luxuries.

3. Upgrade your skills

One is never too old to learn. Mastering new skills to meet the requirements of the current job market should not be a setback. The job seeker should also be ready to learn and adapt to a whole new job from scratch.

4. Seek help and support

As mentioned above, changing career paths at 50 is not easy. Therefore, seeking the support of family and friends as well as professional advice will surely be helpful.

 

All in all, ending a job adventure to begin another one can be challenging. However, wasting away precious time at a job that one hates is not a wise decision. Change should therefore be an option so as to experience what life has to offer to the fullest.

Going green is not just a thoughtful decision to take with regards to the environment. It also enhances the way customers perceive a company. For instance, for the same service, a client might choose one firm over the other just because it is eco-friendly. Firms can thus impress consumers and potential collaborators by opting to protect the environment.

There is no need to make drastic changes. A company can start shifting to eco-friendly means through some simple steps. Building a green business from scratch also involves the same ideas: rejecting practices that harm the environment to adopt those that support it.

Firstly, these are the materials that an environmentally friendly company should avoid using:

  1. Plastics that are made from polyethylene
  2. Multilayered packaging
  3. Styrofoam
  4. Polystyrene
  5. Fossil fuel energy
  6. Materials that cannot be recycled

A firm wishing to go green can use the following instead:

  1. Plant-based plastics
  2. Biodegradable plastics
  3. Alternative energy sources
  4. Recycled materials and products
  5. Recycled moulded packaging
  6. Post-consumer recycled polyethylene bags that are made from recycled waste

Just by changing the products that the firm uses, it is already positively enhancing its ecological footprint. In this sense, going green starts by producing less waste and favouring natural, recyclable energy.

This is only the beginning though, as many other measures can be taken to make a company eco-friendly. The list below shows certain steps than a firm can follow to drive its environmentally sustainable growth:

1. Invest in nature

Planting trees outside the office not only contributes to the protection of the environment, but also beautifies a building’s exterior aspect. Inside the building, plants can be used to purify the air. Scatter potted plants throughout the office, both in the lounge and next to employees. This will brighten up the atmosphere, make clients and new recruits more at ease and increase productivity to some extent.

2. Save energy

Switching off the lights when they are not in use decreases the amount of energy waste that a company produces. The enterprise can also opt for energy-efficient lighting instead of incandescent bulbs. At the same time, it can choose to replace old equipment and machinery with new, eco-friendly items. Adopting this practice also helps to save money on the electricity bills, resulting in an additional fund. This extra money can be used to better the company or to further finance the firm’s green venture.

3. Opt for electronic data management

Getting rid of unnecessary paperwork can significantly reduce a firm’s negative impact on the environment. Computerise as much data as possible. This is not only eco-friendly, but also saves money as there is no need to buy as much paper anymore. Recycling used paper which is no longer needed is another green practice.

4. Reduce oil consumption

A company will truly be environmentally friendly when its employees also adopt this value. For instance, carpooling is a good way to save oil and money. Public transportation and telecommuting are additional options that can be considered.

 

This is only a beginning. Many other measures can be adopted to build an environmentally sustainable business. It is never too late for a firm to decide to go green. The first step can be small, but its impact will undoubtedly be impressive.

Human productivity is not the same as that of machines. There are certain times at which we are the most efficient and some instances at which we lag in terms of productivity. This is perfectly normal, as the brain needs to rest. However, improving our efficiency is becoming more and more important to maintain increasingly competitive and demanding jobs. To answer to this need, various studies were carried out. These analyse the day of a general working adult to determine the times at which we are the most productive.

The ‘ultradian rhythm’

People function on a 24-hour internal clock. This equates to a whole day in which we sleep, wake up and go through several levels of alertness. The rate at which we transition from high productivity levels to low productivity levels is called the ‘ultradian rhythm’. This rhythm can vary from person to person, but humans generally go through cycles of heightened focus that last around ninety minutes each. These are known as the ‘ultradian cycle’.

They begin with high productivity levels that gradually deplete themselves as the cycle grows to a close. There is a way to find the time at which a specific person’s ultradian cycles begin. For instance, they can monitor their moods and their levels of concentration across several days. By tracking their routines, they will be able to identify their peaks and drops in terms of focus. Following this step, they can use the gathered data to increase their productivity and to take breaks when necessary.

People’s powers of logic and deduction are at their best in the morning

On a more general note, studies have found out than humans are the most efficient in the morning. This is due to several reasons. For instance, research indicates that people experience a 50% spike in their stress hormones within 30 minutes after waking up. This suggests a heightened level of focus and concentration which does not compare to the rest of the day.

Work that requires critical thinking, creative prowess and high mental capacities should therefore be done early. Additionally, mornings are hailed as the best time to exercise as the body builds more muscle at dawn than at dusk. Distractions do not impede on our thought process as much in the early hours of the day as well. This means that we are less likely to lose our focus to social media sites or other hobbies before the afternoon.

Another study shows that humans generally wake up in good moods. This positive attitude tends to get increasingly better as the time passes. Noon is supposedly the time at which people are in the best of moods. However, after this peak, humans start to get tired. Their efficiency begins to drop as the workday drags longer. As such, it is recommended to organise important meetings and to take high stake calls at midday. Success rates are much higher in the mornings or at noon in contrast to later on in the afternoon.

 

It is, however, important to note that humans have individual perks and are not all on the same schedule. Night workers may for instance find themselves to be at their lowest levels of productivity in the mornings. Other such alterations need to be taken into consideration when defining the time at which people are the most efficient. Nonetheless, having a general scheme can still prove to be useful.

Entrepreneur is not an easy career path, even less so in the ever-changing digital age. While there are new opportunities for start-ups each day, few of these last long enough to culminate into a business. This is because there are several factors that, if not addressed, can considerably hamper progress.

An ever-changing environment

For instance, it is well-known that the world is currently changing faster than ever. Information is being passed around in milliseconds and people’s attention does not stick to one thing for a long time. As such, entrepreneurs have to constantly adapt to the ever-changing environment in which their business is being developed. Demands and market specifics can shift at sudden rates, thus requiring entrepreneurs to be increasingly flexible.

Fierce competition

The decrease in new enterprises is also a notable factor. In the 1980s, 15% of the all businesses were start-ups. This percentage has now dropped to 8%. This is due to the sheer amount of competition that entrepreneurs have to deal with. Most of this comes from big companies that are constantly innovating to adapt to changing markets. However, innovation also means that new technology emerges every day. This enables many new businesses to thrive in the digital world.

New opportunities

Looking closer at the digital age itself, various aspects impact on the way in which businesses are being developed. With the rise of the internet, businesses have lots of opportunities for development. Indeed, many entrepreneurs can make use of helpful online platforms to launch and boost their start-up. Social media websites offer highly valued exposure. Many even use the internet as a basis to create their start-up.

For instance, the retail and commerce business has changed so much in the last decades. Online shopping is thriving and payment systems are less and less cash dependant. The internet also gives entrepreneurs access to a more global market.

New challenges

While all of these advantages are very much real, the downsides of the internet are still present. For instance, establishing an online business is considerably expensive. Developing a website can cost a fair bit of money and so do app-designing and digital marketing. E-businesses also have to rely a lot on advertising, which can be quite pricy. They need to reach their target markets, and unlike brick-and-mortar stores, they do not have a noticeable physical presence.

Another threat that entrepreneurs have to deal with in the digital world is hackers, spammers and conmen. As said above, information is being passed around at phenomenal rates. This is because the information is stored on the internet or on a computer. However, these can be easily hacked into by experienced cybercriminals and the data can be damaged, stolen, sold and/or leaked. A start-up dealing with sensitive information has to install counter-hacking solutions or employ tech specialists to prevent data thefts. In turn, these countermeasures can be quite expensive. These web-associated costs and risks can also dissuade entrepreneurs from launching their business or even lead to bankruptcy.

 

While the digital world can foster new ideas for entrepreneurs to open start-ups, it also presents challenges. These can be risky, so business launchers have to be well prepared to face and overcome the obstacles. Still, be it now or twenty years ago, getting started with a business has always been challenging and will no doubt still be in the future. The key is to take advantage of the positive changes introduced by the digital world. By adapting and learning from their mistakes, entrepreneurs will eventually tackle the difficulties presented to them.

An incubator is by definition a growth infrastructure which helps new ventures develop into successful businesses. The process usually involves the provision of physical and communication facilities as well as networking possibilities and education. Via the assistance provided, the start-up will eventually gain access to capital.

Origin

The concept of incubators was born in the United States in the 1950s, but primarily became noticeable in the mid-1990s. Indeed, the dot-com boom resulted in a chain of incubators and 2005 finally saw the creation of Y Combinator. This American organisation is one of the leading incubators around the world. It is at the base of successful companies such as Dropbox, Airbnb, Twitch, Quora and more such enterprises.

Y Combinator is also known as the company which sparked the rise of modern incubators around the world. For instance, there are approximately 7000 incubators worldwide, according to the National Business Incubation Association (NBIA). Amongst these, 1250 can be found in the United States alone, 700 in China, 400 in Brazil and 220 in the United Kingdom. Mauritius also has some incubators, although the numbers are less impressive.

Impact of incubators

All of these incubators are impacting on the worldwide start-up scene and individually changing specific entrepreneurial landscapes. The survival rates for businesses that go through incubators are reportedly around 92%. Their success is attributed to various aspects.

Guidance

While some value the development of business skills, others highlight the networking advantages that come with incubator programs. Start-ups gain both credibility and value when associated with incubators and the latter’s sponsors. Also, they are less likely to scramble with official/legal paperwork with the provided guidance. These contribute to raising a confident batch of start-ups that can tackle markets and challenges with relative ease.

A good work environment

The provision of office equipment and a functioning work space also impacts on the entrepreneurial scene in various ways. Firstly, these give entrepreneurs the necessary tools they need to cultivate their ideas and to network with other start-up owners. The potential for growth is considerably greater in this sense.

The whole ecosystem benefits from incubators

Also, with access to these facilities, entrepreneurs are given a place to start, which boosts their involvement in their project. It is therefore safe to say that incubators promote and actively participate in the growth of entrepreneurship on various levels.

For instance, the start-up ecosystem is seeing changes at both macro and micro levels with the involvement of incubators. The organisations help with the economic growth of a country. They also have a hand in the creation of wealth, jobs and innovation ventures. Additionally, incubators aid in the fostering of an entrepreneurial culture on a local level. They promote research and create opportunities for university students and in certain cases also impact on international trade.

On a more specific note, the changes that incubators are bringing to the entrepreneurial scene in India reflect the local population’s drive in terms of start-up creation. However, while around 5000 businesses are created in the country each year, a lot of these start-ups end up dying due to a lack of support. This can be attributed to the gap between entrepreneurs’ expectations and incubators’ offers.

In any case, Mauritius has a lot to learn from incubator experiences and impacts worldwide. The advantages that these business hubs provide can be very beneficial to the local entrepreneurial scene.

A lot of people want to become entrepreneurs and launch their own business. However, only a few actually take the leap to do so. One of the main reasons for abandoning this path is “It’s too late”. As people grow older, they tend to face various difficulties that can discourage them from starting an enterprise. This article lists some reasons why you should go for entrepreneurship at a young age.

1. Long-term profits

If you launch a business at a young age, you will be able to benefit from the returns for a longer-time period. Let’s say you start an enterprise now. It grows and grows to become a big success in ten years’ time. The long-term profits that you reap in this case are considerably higher than if you launch your start-up in your late forties.

2. Motivation and energy

Becoming an entrepreneur is hard. Startups demand a lot of work and focus. However, as people grow older, they tend to show a decline in energy and motivation. As such, you should start your business when you are still young and enthusiastic about your idea.

3. Youngsters are more adaptable

Young people have not been exposed to the professional world as much as their older counterparts. They are thus less committed to certain rules and norms and are a lot more flexible. For instance, a young entrepreneur is more likely to identify and implement useful technology into his/her business. You will not be as at ease with tomorrow’s technology as you are with today’s technology. So, the time to strike is now.

4. Lower Stakes

As a fresh graduate, teen or young adult, you are not committed to the responsibilities that come with looking after a family or partner yet. You are still free to try various paths without worrying about bills. If you open a startup and see that it is not doing well, you can still switch. You are not risking as much, which leads us to the next point.

5. The ability to take risks

Young people can take more risks and bear the effects of said risks a lot more than their older counterparts. Realistically speaking, startups can either fly or flop. In case of the latter outcome, youngsters have more time to make up for the lost money. Also, if you try your hand at entrepreneurship and see that this path is not for you, you can easily change careers.

6. Future prospects

After setting up their business and overcoming the difficulties in their path, many entrepreneurs think about launching themselves into other ventures. This leads to serial entrepreneurship, with each new startup being better than the last. This is due to the constantly improving skills of the entrepreneur. The younger you are, the more time you will have to get better and launch increasingly successful businesses.

 

Another phrase which stops young people from launching themselves into entrepreneurship is “It’s too soon”. Being young may have its disadvantages, but these can be gradually overcome as you gain more experience. There is in fact no reason why you should not start your business at a young age. Work on your idea, gather your funds and take the leap. The rest will come, eventually.

A start-up begins with an idea, which then slowly expands with the addition of other ideas. Still, the process to actually transform the idea into a start-up is significantly more difficult. Many aspiring entrepreneurs give up or do not succeed due to the obstacles they meet prior to launching their business. The common mistakes can, however, be avoided via careful planning and education. Below are some of the most important steps that precede the debut of a start-up.

1. Round up your ideas

As said above, the initial idea which motivates you to begin a start-up can be quickly surrounded by other ideas. While all of your ideas will seem interesting, some may be good and some may be detrimental to your progress. Deciding what to keep and what to discard is a very important step in the path to launching your business. It will help you define your target market and refine your idea so it is fit for generating income.

2. Test your idea, product or service

Before investing all of your savings in a start-up, you might want to test your idea. Validating your product can save money on unprofitable ventures. It will also give you a better idea about the reception of your service. Tests of this type can be conducted in several ways. One of these is to create ads about your product and to see if people click ‘BUY’. If customers are not tempted to buy your product before it launches, chances that they will do so after are thin.

3. Create a business plan

Creating a business plan is a step that many business starters skip, which in most cases results in their downfall. A business plan can be helpful in many ways. For instance, launching a start-up requires funding. To access the necessary money, you are likely to look for investors of some sort. These investors are more likely sponsor a business which has a clear-cut, realistic and profitable plan than a blurry idea. Also, drafting a business plan is not difficult. It is but an elaborate summary of your business’s estimated growth during its first 3-5 years. It should also include ways in which you plan to take your start-up from point A to point B.

4. Join an incubator

An incubator is a good option, one of the best even, if you are a new entrepreneur. To give your business a better chance of survival, you need to surround yourself with the right people. This includes lawyers, potential associates, and investors. In this sense, incubators allow plenty of chances to network. Your start-up is bound to benefit from an environment in which you can communicate and exchange ideas with like-minded individuals. The support from the incubator can also be helpful when contacting investors so as to secure funding.

5. Get started with branding

Another mistake that business launchers make is to skip branding. Making your brand known to your potential clients even before you start selling to them is very important. It will build the foundations for your customer base and will give a good boost to your launch. You should make sure that your brand reflects your product/service and that it is catchy enough to be remembered. Once you launch your business, you can then grow your brand via social media networking and blogging.

6. Create your website

Nowadays, having an online presence is as important, if not more so, as having a physical location for your start-up. Indeed, your business needs to appear on browsers when people search for keywords on the internet. This is very important as it will increase your credibility, help in your branding and ultimately lead to sales. However, websites take time to build and take even more time to get viewers and clicks. Getting started on the creation of a website for your business before its launch is therefore crucial.

 

It goes without saying that the six steps mentioned above are merely the tip of the iceberg. There are countless other procedures that you will go through prior to launching your start-up. That will also only be the beginning. Even more work awaits you after the opening of your business. Maintaining the upward curve of your start-up’s growth can be as hard, if not harder, than getting it started. Therefore, if you wish launch a business, the time to start working on it is now.

Turbine is glad to have Alexandrine Maigrot as one of our Start-up Coaches. Alexandrine is coaching Nathalie, founder of Feuilles et Fleurs. We are pretty sure that her years of experience will benefit our start-up in the best way possible. Alexandrine shares her journey with us.

Alexandrine, please tell us about you.

I was born and raised in France, before settling in Mauritius. Through my professional activities, travels and various trainings, I had the opportunity and pleasure to open up to different cultures, all equally enriching.
With an initial Bachelor’s degree in Economics, Business Management and Marketing (advertising and international trade option), I started my professional career in large groups, notably as marketing manager and product developer.
In my jobs, I have always allocated space for creativity and attached particular importance to employee initiatives and personal development, accompanying it to the best of my abilities and skills.

Share with us your professional journey and your experience with entrepreneurs and start-ups so far.

Passionate about entrepreneurship and project developments, I made it my job, creating my own company to support and guide other companies, and also personally undertaking projects with partners (financial or operational).
Thanks to my 30 years of professional experience, various project accompaniments or implementation and a further training in Coaching (School of Anne France Weyl – Hedo coaching), I am committed to putting my skills at the service of other people to enhance their performance by accompanying their projects and providing individual  coaching, collective or organizations, with a certain attraction for the world of entrepreneurship.

I use my creativity to help my interlocutors develop their full potential and thus help them to meet the personal and professional challenges of our time.
I’ve been summing this up lately as “passing on knowledge to” doing with what we have, what we are to move from the ordinary to the extraordinary. »

Why have you chosen to be a Turbine’s Start-up Coach?

Working with Turbine and Start-ups is a pleasure in the sense that it meets my values.
I fully support the concept of Turbine, which provides guidance and expertise to new entrepreneurs and helps them spread their wings!
It sometimes seems difficult and complicated to start a business especially when you’re “alone”. Turbine offers the necessary coaching, networking opportunities, expertise, and support to entrepreneurs in their difficult journey. It is, in my opinion, an incredible chance for new entrepreneurs who will know how to seize this opportunity.
The experts and coaches accompanying these young entrepreneurs, within the framework of Turbine, provide their assistance to the development of projects and new ideas, which may become businesses that might not have been born otherwise. This can surely enrich Mauritius’ economy and reveal new entrepreneurs’ talent.

Have business ideas or want to discuss about your entrepreneurial projects?

Our business coach is here to help you out.

Get a taste of how Incubation program coaching works.

 

Nathalie Daruty is a woman entrepreneur in Mauritius promoting medicinal plants. For a long time, Nathalie has been working on starting her enterprise Feuilles et fleurs and wants to take her business to the next level.  Now with all the knowledge, she has acquired from the Turbine Test Drive Program, she has joined the Turbine Incubation program to strengthen her start-up. Nathalie shares her vision and her interesting journey with us.

“I strongly wish to develop an enterprise that becomes the reference in the field of medicinal plants and its application. For that, I have plans to learn about the applications in depth from healers and specialists around the globe and bring this knowledge to our country to benefit our people.”

organic plantatin

Nathalie tending to her plants in her new field of crops

My entrepreneurial journey began when I started my studies on phytotherapy and aromatherapy. I started by testing a few infusions from plants in my garden and shared the products with friends and family: they loved it! Their reaction boosted my motivation and confidence so I kept working harder. I was able to make some money and buy paper bags as packaging.  Then I participating in Christmas markets where I earned enough money to buy a plant dryer. Taking part in these various fairs also allowed me to slowly level up the packaging. Back then, the dryer was in my garage while all the manufacturing was in my dining room. I finally also had to convert a room into a studio for my workshops. Despite having a few regular clients, my business could not flourish due to the limited land and production.

I have thus decided to move to farmland where I will also conduct my workshops.

natural products Foliage is collected in a sustainable and eco-conscious fashion

 

I am often asked:”Why Feuilles et Fleurs?”  One of the reasons is that I have always loved infusions and herbal products. After teaching for many years, I really wanted to do something that I am curious about and create new products that would be beneficial for our planet. That urge of doing something on my own doubled when I realized that I have to change my lifestyle to take care of our well being and go closer to nature.

Another reason would be the lack of good quality natural local herbal products. Most herbal products are imported and may not be of quality. The lack of simplicity in our consumption habits is neither good for our body nor for the planet.

My creations till now involve 12 variety of infusions namely turmeric powder, moringa powder, crude dried plants in bulk, massage balls (siam tampon), fagots of purification with sage.

natural products

Feuilles et Fleurs products in their new packaging

 

These natural products are for people who acknowledge the importance of health, that prevention is better than cure with chemical products, who are also environmentally friendly and want to learn the clean way of doing cultivation.

I am also looking forward to Feuilles et Fleurs conducting a workshop of 4 DIY sessions in collaboration with Wellness and SensiBio where participants will learn how to make their own cosmetic and cleaning products. The sessions are as follows:

5th February 2019: Sun’s cream and repair oil

26th February 2019: laundry, stain remover and dishwashing liquid

19th Mars 2019: deodorant, two kinds of toothpaste and makeup remover

9th April 2019: 3 soaps, powder shampoo + bar shampoo

workshop

The aim of this work is to be ecological, to reduce waste and also economic.

The Turbine Test Drive Programme was really beneficial to Feuilles et Fleurs. It made me realize the importance of structuring my company and gave me a more acute vision of the future.

Up to then, Feuilles et Fleurs was a very small company that I just liked working on, today, I have started taking action to make it a good and profitable business!

I never had any entrepreneurial training. As an incubated start-up at Turbine, I am really looking forward to all the experience and knowledge I will be getting through the coaching and workshops. I believe that it will help me avoid certain mistakes and guide me in making the best future possible for Feuilles et Fleurs. I understand that Turbine has a really good network too, and this will help me.

I am so thankful to Turbine for selecting Feuilles et Fleurs for the incubation program after Test Drive. I am really excited about the upcoming adventure!