Why Educators Make Some of the Best EdTech Entrepreneurs
It’s no secret that many teachers leave their jobs to pursue more lucrative careers. About one-third of teachers quit within the first five years of joining the profession. Where do they go? Some choose to stay in the field of education in a different way—by becoming EdTech entrepreneurs. Teachers who become EdTech entrepreneurs are often very successful. So why do teachers make some of the best EdTech entrepreneurs?
The number one reasons educators make great EdTech entrepreneurs may be simply that teachers know what teachers need and want. EdTech entrepreneurs who come from the tech field and have never been in a classroom don’t understand the unique needs of classroom teachers. Teachers can imagine how students will use certain devices or apps. They can foresee the problems a new technology might create. Teachers are experts at figuring out what helps students and what students will misuse. For this reason, teachers make superb EdTech entrepreneurs.
Teachers who leave the profession also take with them some valuable skills that serve them well as entrepreneurs. That’s because teaching requires such a wide variety of talents, from communication to multi-tasking.
The ability to communicate well is one that all educators must develop. Teachers have to be able to hold and keep the attention of thirty children at once. Considering that kids have much shorter attention spans and far less self-control than adults, this is no small task. Not to mention, educators are often teaching those students about something the kids couldn’t care less about, like chemistry or geometry. However, great teachers successfully capture the imagination of students and hold their attention no matter how boring the subject. In comparison, talking to a room full of other entrepreneurs seems downright easy.
Educators also have to be able to read a room. Good teachers know when they’re losing the attention of their students and can quickly change course to win them back. When giving a business presentation, this is an excellent skill.
In addition to being good communicators, educators are leaders. It takes a certain amount of leadership skill to be able to stand in front of a room of kids and get them to do what you ask without (too much) complaining. Those same skills help teachers be effective leaders in the workplace as entrepreneurs.
Educators are also efficient multi-taskers. Most classroom teachers are multi-tasking throughout their entire day—explaining to one student how to solve a math problem while getting two other students to stop fighting and keeping an eye on the other twenty kids in the room is tough. But being able to multi-task is a skill that all entrepreneurs need. After all, starting up an EdTech business is tough work, and there’s always something else that needs to get done.
Finally, educators make great EdTech entrepreneurs because they truly care about what they do. No teacher goes into the education field to get rich. Even when teachers leave the classroom and enter the world of EdTech, they bring with them their passion for bettering the lives of children. Successful EdTech entrepreneurs aren’t just looking to make the next big thing in education and cash out. They want to make a meaningful difference in the world through their work. Teachers go into the education profession for the same reason, and this passion shows in their work.
So whether you’re looking for someone to help you get your EdTech company off the ground or you’re a teacher who isn’t sure if they can make it in the business world, remember—the people who succeed in EdTech are those who understand education and care about it deeply. And nobody fits that description better than a teacher.
Do you know a teacher who has become a successful EdTech entrepreneur? Tell us about it!