Getting your children into the entrepreneurial spirit is a great way to help them learn some valuable life lessons, money management, as well as leadership. With so many perks, it’s no wonder parents today are encouraging kids to start to think for themselves and launch their own ventures.
In addition to the benefits previously mentioned, they’ll learn a great deal more about responsibility and independence, which can help them out in other areas, such as dealing with chores, playing sports, or handling schoolwork. Whether your kids already have a business idea or you’re in the process of encouraging them, here are a few ways to teach your kids about entrepreneurship.
Show Them Examples
It’s not always enough for a child to understand that their entrepreneurial vision is achievable just because their parents say so. Sometimes, it helps to show them concrete examples of successful companies founded by children, which can inspire them. To start, show them some episodes of children who received deals on the television show, “Shark Tank.”
This allows them to see firsthand how children manage to pitch a room full of adult investors and hear more about those children’s concepts and ideas. To start, check out this “Kid-preneur” special edition segment. Then, branch out to other YouTube videos that show specific children creating businesses in various industries.
Help Them Understand Goals
First and foremost, you want your kids to explore entrepreneurship while doing something they’re passionate about. Goals are an integral part of any entrepreneur’s successes. For example, if they love to make jewelry, they could sell handmade accessories. However, it’s important to help them understand the value of goals. This way, they aren’t just aimlessly working towards nothing in particular.
Let’s say they sell bracelets at $1 per bracelet. Let’s assume that there’s an awesome jewelry making kit for $30. At this rate, your child would need to sell at least five bracelets per week to reach their goal. Work with them through the math to help them better understand the type of goals they want to set.
Give them the Resources
To push your child forward, it’s important that you invest in their vision—at least to start. This means purchasing the materials that they need to launch, buying business cards to make them feel official and much more. It also helps to get them started with their very own website. If they’re offering a service, the website would be more informational than they anything else. If they’re selling products, you can get them set up with an online e-commerce shop.
As you go through the motions of helping them set up a website (choose an easy, customizable platform like WordPress), explain things to them along the way. For example, show them how to choose and purchase a domain, and teach them the difference between shared hosting and VPS hosting.
Eventually, depending on the age of your child, their attitude towards entrepreneurship, etc., they can begin investing their own earnings towards their business.
If they aren’t sure what type of business they want to open at first, nudge them in a neutral direction. For example, there’s a program called “Lemonade Day,” which provides children with a lemonade stand and helps them learn more about managing finances and running their own business. This will give them a feel for whether they’re interested in moving forward in the business world.
Let Them Pitch YouAlthough you should certainly invest in your children, as previously mentioned, there are creative ways to do so. Consider allowing them to pitch you traditionally, just like the children on “Shark Tank” pitch real investors. Help them understand everything that they’ll need to present during the pitch, such as how much money they’ll need, where that money will go, and how they intend to reach their target market to make sales. Host your own in-home pitching session, and ask all the business-related questions you need. And don’t forget to record the entire session!
Don’t Pressure Them
One of the most important things you’ll need to understand is that you shouldn’t pressure them to start a business if they just don’t enjoy doing it. After all, they’re still children, and it’s natural for them to have stronger interests in other areas. Although you might want them to stick to the task at hand, if their hearts aren’t in it, you have to allow them to pursue other passions, just as you’d want if roles were reversed.
The entire entrepreneurial experience should be fun and challenging for them. You should also pay special attention to how it affects other parts of their life, like school. Keep an eye out for signs of stress, and always intervene if you feel as though their newly created business is having a negative impact on them.