"Why wait for someone to give you a job when you can create one?" said Steidle, founder of the Business Lounge, a coworking facility based in Roanoke, Va., in a prepared statement. "With a little encouragement, many people would launch successful freelance careers or even start high-growth enterprises. Maybe all they need to know is how. That's where entrepreneurial ecosystems come into play."
Steidle pointed to Washington State's Employment Security Department, which launched a Self-Employment Assistance Program (SEAP) for unemployed workers to start new businesses that offer job opportunities to other workers.
Meanwhile, enterprising people across the country have embraced entrepreneurship during this challenging economy, Steidle said. In 2009, the rate of U.S. entrepreneurship climbed to its highest level in 14 years, according to the Kauffman Index of Entrepreneurial Activity.
All that entrepreneurship keeps unemployment at bay, and it may even serve as a catalyst of economic growth, according to a study by the Small Business Administration.