Most Entrepreneurs Have 1 Thing in Common: Rich Parents
I’ve always had a theory that any guy who lists “entrepreneur” in his dating app bio is a grade-A douche, and according to recent studies, there may be a good reason why: the majority of successful entrepreneurs were once trust fund babies.
In a piece published on Quartz, author Aimee Groth cites multiple studies that confirm what you already probably suspected: the key to entrepreneurship isn’t work ethic, it’s rich parents.
Forget about all the self-help entrepreneurship books and “Shark Tank” inspired motivational videos. Being an entrepreneur doesn’t depend on your ability to take risks, be a leader, or work independently — it depends on your access to financial capital. Because how are you supposed to start a business if you don’t have any money?
One study found that the probability of self-employment depends majorly on if someone received an inheritance or not. Another study debunked the “risk-taking gene” and found that the only reason entrepreneurs are risk-takers is because their savings accounts (or parents’ savings accounts) allow them to take risks without worrying about making rent or feeding themselves if all goes to shit.
Berkeley economist Ross Levine had similar findings that he shared with Quartz. He found that most entrepreneurs are white, male, and highly educated. He also found that if someone does not have family money, it’s much less likely that they’ll become an entrepreneur.
So, I stand corrected, it’s not being en entrepreneur that makes you a douchebag, it’s being a douchebag that leads to you being an entrepreneur. Or, just being a spoiled brat, whatever.
Of course, there are exceptions to this rule. These exceptions are the ones that you’ll hear about in aspirational film adaptations or clickbait-y articles, but the majority of the entrepreneurs in the world are just poor little rich boys who couldn’t handle not being the boss. They’ll adamantly try to shrug off this fact about themselves, and they’ll tell interviewers that their success really just came from “being authentic” or “working really hard and being consistent.” Or, they’ll talk about the five years they spent post-grad working at daddy’s Wall Street firm to show they were “just like you,” but now you know the truth.
So don’t feel guilty about working a 9-5 and not “following your dreams,” there’s still time to get adopted by a Kardashian and then take the risk you’ve been dreaming about!