Imprenditori a 16 anni. Intervista a Michael Moore-Jones

Ho spesso letto con molta curiosità le storie di giovani imprenditori che Alberto ha raccontato durante i numerosi post del suo blog.

Quasi per caso, durante la lettura della dieta mediatica mattutina ho incontrato il giovane imprenditore Michael Moore-Jones. Ho iniziato a seguire il suo blog e leggere le sue opinioni. Difficile dire che siano solo di un sedicenne. Eppure è così.

Michael è un ragazzo di 16 anni ed è della Nuova Zelanda. Grazie alla sua passione per la tecnologia ha già fondato il sito They Don't Teach You This In School che mette a disposizione delle giovane generazioni insegnamento ed esperienze di quelle più adulte. Sta per far partire anche Duo un social network verticale dedicato alle coppie e all’amore su Internet.

Il solo parallelo che mi viene in mente dalle nostre parti è quello di Nicola, certo è che mi piacerebbe leggere e sapere di ragazzi così giovani e così intraprendenti anche in Italia. Ad ogni modo, senza scadere nelle banalità del caso, ho chiesto a Michael un paio di domande su come vede il suo futuro e qualche consiglio per chi come lui crede che la tecnologia sia fondamentale per formarlo.

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You know, it's told that New Zealand is Italy upside down. Since you are an entepreneur, which are the advices you could give to a young Italian who wants to create a start-up and let his business grow?

The thing that has made my life a lot harder in regard to starting up projects and businesses is that there is so much advice on entrepreneurship out there. There are thousands of books, thousands of blogs, and thousands of people all trying to tell us that entrepreneurship should be done a certain way. But if I've learned one thing in my short time, it's that you need to trust your instincts and NOT follow others' advice. If you follow other people's advice, you'll be led down a certain path that may in fact not be right for you personally, or for the business you're trying to start. You need to have faith that you're going about things the right way, and if you are stuck, ask for advice but only ask people who you know personally and trust.

What is the role of Schools in defining the managers and entepreneurs of the future?

There's one thing holding me back from spending my whole life working on my projects, and that is school. I spend seven hours of every weekday at school, and I honestly cannot think of a single benefit that attending school brings They Don't Teach You This In Schoolto my entrepreneurial life. School teacher managers and entrepreneurs to all think the same way - it says that "you should all solve problems like this". And I believe that that is incredibly bad for entrepreneurs. Entrepreneurship is about creativity and doing things in new and innovative ways. Perhaps that's why many of the most successful companies in the world have been started by high school dropouts. Continuing to attend school is a choice that I have made because I want to receive a higher education degree, because I believe it will help me in life. But in all honesty, I think I would be a much more successful entrepreneur if I wasn't attending school every day. I'm holding a long-term view.

What's in your mind about how your future will be?

I am very certain about where my life is heading. I'll be a serial entrepreneur continually creating ventures that solve problems in two different areas. Firstly, I want to create applications that simply help to make people's lives better and easier. This is very broad, and I want to leave it like that, so that I can solve any problem in any area which I think is making people's lives harder. The second area I want to work in is education. As I spoke about above, I think that our education systems are damaging entrepreneurial creativity. There is value in attending school, but at the same time it kills some entrepreneurs' chances. This is something that I'll work on long-term over my life, but eventually I hope to create a new form of education that focusses on educating the individual with their personal interests and needs.

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Un punto focale, su cui Michael pare insistere molto nelle sue parole, è quanto ancora il sistema educativo, e in questo caso in tutto il mondo, debba sforzarsi per avvicinare ai giovani a quello che li aspetta dopo aver varcato la soglia della scuola per l’ultima volta. Soprattutto fargli credere che le strade da poter prendere sono tante, non solo quella di chiudersi 9-18 in un ufficio.