Ageless Entrepreneur


Ageless Entrepreneur offers a new perspective on the barriers to entry that young people face today in starting their careers as well as valuable insights into the possibilities for seniors, who all too often are being forced out of the work force when they can least afford it.

Entrepreneurial guru Sam Macleod leads an improbable group of would be entrepreneurs into new challenges and unexpected alliances that revitalize their future. Spearheading the group is Sam’s boyhood friend Nick, who like so many others has received the golden handshake prematurely.

Throughout the narrative, the qualities required of an entrepreneur operating in an economy burdened with barriers and limitations are brought out through discussion and a wide range of anecdotes. The story draws us right into the class as we share in the fears, hopes, and challenges faced by the characters. The lessons provide a solid foundation for anyone considering a career as an entrepreneur or simply looking to make sound strategic decisions in managing their career, no matter what their age or circumstance.


Entrepreneurship is not just for the young. It is a mindset, and it’s never too late to take charge of your life and become an entrepreneur. That’s Fred Dawkins’s message in a nutshell, and nobody tells the story better of how to take the leap successfully. Fred’s common-sense wisdom and experience shines through this journey of transformation — an excellent read for young and old, and everyone in between.

The lessons you remember are the ones from good storytellers and Fred Dawkins is one of the best. I found myself nodding my head in agreement and smiling as I read Ageless Entrepreneur. There is much diversity in entrepreneurs and the lessons on age are equally applicable to the diverse community in understanding our strengths. Underlying the entrepreneurial spirit are self-belief and action.

Ageless Entrepreneur is a must-read, not only for entrepreneurs, but for anyone who is reinventing their lives. Fred weaves a wonderful true tale demonstrating how age makes little difference in our personal journey. The true journey is our willingness to take risks and grow into the people we are meant to become. Entrepreneurship just so happens to be a great path for many of us.

Recently I was in the process of selling my historically significant commercial building. During the negotiations with realtors and prospective buyers, poring over lists, namely needs, wants, and conditions, I was overwhelmed and sought a diversion in Fred Dawkins’s book. I quickly became immersed in the text. His counsel on the key elements in negotiations awakened in me an appreciation for what was most important for me as well as for the buyer, and the need for flexibility to reach an agreement. I accepted that it truly was a process that had to evolve, and because of his advice I felt empowered and confident to negotiate the sale.

One of the biggest trends out there is the retirement of the baby boomers, coupled with rising life expectancy. Fred Dawkins’s Ageless Entrepreneur takes a Wealthy Barber-type storyline approach to describing the ‘encore’ acts of baby boomers who have left the corporate womb but aren’t quite ready (either financially or emotionally) for full-time golf and daytime television. In fact, the story eerily parallels the launch of my own ‘encore’ entrepreneurial endeavour.

In Ageless Entrepreneur, author Fred Dawkins maintains that the modern economy, while challenging, is one where opportunities abound. He maintains that seeking out and capitalizing on these opportunities for innovation, entrepreneurship, and intrapreneurship in furtherance of creating and managing your own career is the most important skill any person, whether new to the workforce or entering a new career phase, can seek to attain. This book provides a simple but powerful story to reveal the essential need for interdisciplinary collaboration and mentorship, purposeful career and education choices, and a mindfully entrepreneurial sense of self-awareness in order to succeed. In an elegantly simple approach, Dawkins characters transform themselves, individually and as a group, from an uncertain and unfocused collection of individuals into a dynamic opportunity-identifying alliance. Entrepreneurship is a mindset that can occur at any age and anyone unsure about setting out on their own path should read this book first to be assured that they are in very good company at all times.

Is it a crisis or an opportunity? The economy taking shape is not one that is creating enough jobs for those at the extreme edges of the labour market. The young are trying to claw their way into careers that do not involve serving coffee, all the while wondering what it is that they should really want to do. At the more senior end of the market, many are either being forced to figure out new careers, or worrying that they will have to soon. Entrepreneurship could offer a solution to both groups, but only if they have the nerve and the skills to pursue it. In Ageless Entrepreneur, Fred Dawkins offers practical advice and help to both groups in the form of an engaging and entertaining read.

Ageless Entrepreneur is a must-read for anyone wanting to bring themselves up to speed with the challenges facing today’s workforce. Fred has identified precisely the issues facing millennials, boomers, and those affected in between by the change in economy over the last several years. The way he has put a story to the issues that need to be addressed makes the book a very enjoyable read. We are not in the industrial age any longer, but we have an educational system and a societal belief that the only way to work is to work for an employer. Fred brings to light how our thinking has to change from being a victim, and to not just survive, but to take control of the future by embracing entrepreneurial thinking in order to thrive in the twenty-first century.

We live in a time of significant economic transition, we all experience it but two age groups feel it more than others, the pre twenty-five and the post fifty-five. The young can’t get their careers started and the older find their careers ending before they are ready. In Ageless Entrepreneur, Fred Dawkins tells the engaging story of what happens when members of these two groups are brought together. The results will surprise, inform, and, best of all, inspire you.

About the Author

Fred Dawkins

Posted by Dundurn Guest on October 30, 2014

Fred Dawkins

Fred Dawkins is a serial entrepreneur who co-founded the Olde Hide House, Canada’s largest leather goods store. He is a partner in the Creative Destruction Lab at the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto. The first book in this informative series, Everyday Entrepreneur, was published in 2013. He lives in Guelph, Ontario.