Running a business teaches kids valuable lessons and life skills. Check out Chelsea’s reasons why every kid should run a business.
As a kid, I was always looking for new ways to make money. When I was very young, I sold rocks door to door. No, there wasn’t anything special about the rocks, but I suppose I was pretty darn cute because I sold more than a few.
Later on, I decided to switch products and developed a thriving neighborhood cookie business, which I ran with my brother and a good friend. Of course, my desire for money didn’t go away when I was a teen. That meant I was out babysitting, teaching dance lessons, and working at our local community theater whenever possible.
Of all the great projects I did as a homeschooler, I believe these little businesses were some of the most educational. Oddly enough, they weren’t even an “official” part of my schooling.
My entrepreneurial exploits provided me with countless life lessons that I use even as an adult. On top of that, they gave me the confidence to start my own businesses as an adult. To this day, I’ve only ever had one “real” job working for someone else. Setting my own hours and picking and choosing what I spend time on is the norm for me.
My childhood experiences with running businesses have led me to believe that all kids should be encouraged to start a business. Here’s what they might learn.
I was a quiet and shy kid. However, I entered adulthood with a healthy amount of confidence in my ability to handle the world. Running successful businesses as a kid and knowing I could always find a way to make ends meet with a bit of hard work was a huge factor in my confidence.
Money Management Skills
Far too many people are sent into the world with no clue how to handle finances properly. Running our cookie business way back when I was ten years old planted the seeds for good money management skills. Those skills grew tremendously during my teen years.
I learned early on how to correctly price items to cover my expenses and time. Additionally, I came to understand that I should reinvest much of my profits so my business would grow. Finally, I knew how to save for things I wanted and how to budget for the supplies needed to keep our business up and running.
All of these skills are things I would not have been doing at ten years old without our little business. Learning the skills early on in a low-risk environment was the very best way to do so.
Customer Service Skills
Although I was shy, I knew that to make money I needed to interact with my customers. Sure, the customers were just neighbors at first, but I always greeted them with a smile, made sure orders were fresh and on time, and did everything I could to make things right if something did go wrong. These customer service skills are something I’ve used in every business I’ve run, and I know they are part of what helps me succeed.
Creative Thinking and Problem Solving
Running a business isn’t always smooth sailing. No matter what kind of business you run, problems are bound to arise. When it’s your own business at stake, finding solutions to these problems is vital.
The need for quick and effective problem-solving trains you to look at a situation from all angles and think outside the box to fix the issue. Problem-solving is a vital skill no matter what you end up doing as an adult.
Responsibility is a must-have when running any business. Customers expect certain things, and if you don’t have the self-discipline to deliver, they’ll go elsewhere. Besides that, as mentioned earlier, money management is hugely important to keep a business afloat, and responsibility comes into play there.
Because it is useful in many aspects of life, responsibility is an excellent skill to instill in kids.
As a kid looking to buy my next toy, I was pretty quick to see what increased our profits. One of the first things I noticed was that the quicker I was able to work, the more I could make. Efficiency became the name of the game on Saturday mornings when we were baking those enormous batches of cookies. Since then, I’m always on the lookout for ways to save time and work smarter rather than harder.
There are tons of benefits to running a business as a child. Why not see if your kids are into such a venture? Not only will they learn some remarkable things, but they’ll also get some pocket money out of the deal.
Does your kid run a business? What kind?