By Neil King
New survey by Bayt.com reveals 47 percent of people in the UAE would prefer to be entrepreneurs
A survey by job site Bayt.com has revealed that 47 percent of people in the UAE would prefer to be self-employed, with 48 percent saying they would rather be employees.
The Bayt.com Entrepreneurship in the Middle East survey, conducted with YouGov, reinforced the entrepreneurial nature of the UAE, with many respondents saying self-employment would lead to a better life.
Of those who said they preferred an entrepreneurial path, 60 percent stated self-fulfillment as their number one reason, followed by freedom to choose their own work-life balance, and the chance to be their own boss.
Some 53 percent of the respondents currently employed in the public or private sector said they are thinking of starting their own business, while 20 percent have tried – but fail – to do so in the past.
About 42 percent said that the best time to start a business is mid-career, while 36 percent said ‘any time’ is good for starting up.
The advice that most people (39 percent) would give to an entrepreneur is ‘don’t be afraid of failure’.
However, only ten percent of people surveyed said that ‘all’ and ‘almost all’ entrepreneurs they know are successful.
The most popular start-up concerns were found to be procuring finances (62 percent), uncertainty of profit and income (44 percent), and the need to establish the right contacts (36 percent).
VP of sales for Bayt.com, Suhail Masri, said: “It would seem there are issues standing in the way of people becoming self-employed. With finance being the number one problem across the Middle East, it suggests that the region needs more angel investors to step in and help local entrepreneurs.
“It might also be of benefit for authorities to reconsider their policies, as less stringent regulations could encourage the creation of more start-ups.”
Those who preferred to work for a company over self-employment cited the chance to learn new skills and techniques as the main reason (45 percent), closely followed by regular income (43 percent) and benefits such as medical insurance (34 percent).