If you don’t fancy the idea of your children spending all their holiday time watching TV and down the skate park, what should you get them to do? One idea that is becoming more and more popular among parents is getting kids to start their own businesses. Not only is this a good idea, given the direction that the economy is going, it’s also beneficial for helping kids develop confidence and people skills.
Here’s how to help your kids achieve their business goals.
Let Them Pursue Their Passion
Kids find it really difficult to focus on things that they aren’t interested in. This is why getting them to go to school can be such a mission: smart children hate the fact that they have to sit in rows all day, doing things which are boring.
If you want their new business venture to be sustainable, take a step back and ask them what sort of business they’d like to run. Kids who love animals will probably be quite happy to set up a dog-walking business or even a pet sitting business. Children who are gifted in music or acting could hold their own after school classes. The possibilities are endless.
Tony Hsieh, the founder of Zappos, set up a worm farming business when he was a child, selling worms to passers-by at the tender age of nine. His goal was to become the number one worm farmer in the world.
Introduce The Concept Of Money Management
Because parents provide all the resources that kids needs, many children grow up with the impression that money is infinite. The reality of business soon teaches them that it is not. In fact, it shows that it is often very hard to come by. They’ll soon find out that most companies have to go through lenders, like Colbeck, in order to make ends meet, especially for the first few months and years. Teenagers, for instance, can do things like calculate profit and loss, and how much they would have to repay to a lender every month at a given interest rate. Younger children can practice things like counting up how much money they have in the till and what they’d need to spend to expand their business.
If your children are particularly adept, you could even hold your own investor meeting, where members of the community come to hear the business pitch and commit small sums of money if they like the idea. This will get children used to the fact that they have to offer value to investors in order to receive money in return.
Teach Them About Customer Service
Being able to listen and communicate with people is an essential entrepreneurial skill. It’s what forms the building blocks of all entrepreneurial careers. One of the key skills children need to learn is how their business idea can actually benefit other people. Why do people want to have somebody sit their dog, for instance? Getting children to understand that people want problems to be solved (like the fact that they are worried what their dog will do to the house if it gets distressed while they are out) is the key to giving them good “business sense.”