5 Ways to Teach Kids Entrepreneurship

Instilling a healthy work ethic in kids must be done with love and compassion. Today we're digging into five ways to teach children entrepreneurship.

Owning a business is hard. And it’s an even more difficult task when you have children and trying to achieve a family work life balance. Workdays can be ongoing, often stretching to 16 hours, 7 days a week. 

Oftentimes, you’ll be missing out on quality time with your children, one of the biggest disadvantages in the early days of entrepreneurship. But if you stay the course, you can be rewarded with freedom and more time with your family as the end result. In the meantime, here are some great ways to reduce family work friction and teach your children the value of entrepreneurship and all that it has to offer. 

Being around the family business can help kids become more successful in life.

Entrepreneurship introduced early into a child’s life can help them develop social emotional skills like drive, mental toughness, communication, and negotiation skills that they may not have learned elsewhere. 

How can you help your children develop these life-long skills? 

Try the following 5 ways and watch your children increase their initiative, grit, and business skills, naturally. 

1. Teach Them Fiscal Fitness

Teaching your kids financial literacy enables them to develop delayed gratification and can set them up for life. 

Educate them on the different ways to use money. Many people have never been taught that money is not just to spend. You can also save, invest, and donate money. 

Take them to the bank to open up a savings account and make regular deposits together so they can see their money grow. 

Use an app like GreenLight which allows kids to manage their own money. They also have the option to save, donate, and earn interest. 

Entertain their passions. One time, my 11 year old son had an idea to make money from candy machines so he bought them and placed them into restaurants where he was responsible for supply and operations. That year, he learned the relationship between sales, expenses, and profit. 

Lead by example and show them how good it feels to donate to good causes with our profits. 

Don’t shy away from introducing them to business terms. The more time they spend with you, the more business verbiage they hear and get used to. They may even surprise you one day and use the terms themselves. 

2. Set Goals Together

Setting goals can help your child develop a hard work ethic and grit. My favorite medium to use to develop goals is a vision board. This can be done as a family event wherein everyone creates one. Following up a vision board with written goals can help cement them into the subconscious. Goals can be broken down into 3 components: 

Process goals are the only type of goals that can be controlled. An example of a process goal would be practicing 30 minutes a day on your tennis serves or posting 3 times a week on your Youtube channel. 

Performance goals are metric goals that can be measured but cannot be controlled. An example of a process goal would be running a mile in 5 minutes or attaining 100,000 YouTube subscribers. 

Outcome goals are the ultimate goals you’d like to achieve. These cannot be controlled. Examples include winning the 600 meter dash or monetizing your YouTube Channel. 

3. Allow Them to Fail

Every failure carries with it a seed of equal or greater benefit.

Napoleon Hill in Think and Grow Rich

When we allow our children to fail, we encourage them to learn from their past mistakes and to think of different ways in which to accomplish their goals. As a result, they become mentally tougher. 

It’s important to have a discussion about what was learned from the mistake so that they can adjust the course of action. Once they’ve realized what they’ve learned from this failure, give them the support that only a parent can provide by listening and encouraging them to not give up even when the odds seem insurmountable. 

4. Cultivate Grit and a Hard Work Ethic

“How you do anything is how you do everything” is about having a proactive mindset. As far as entrepreneurial skills, the phrase says a lot: 

• If you clean the table sloppily, you’re probably careless in other ways. 

• If you regularly show up late to appointments, you will likely miss deadlines, too. 

• If you face a serious challenge in your life with courage, you will probably face any challenge with bravery. 

The main point to keep in mind is that even the seemingly insignificant stuff counts in business. Consider a few of these: 

• When you give focused attention to every task you do, you save time later because you won’t need to make corrections later. 

• When you show up on time and meet your deadlines, you gain trust and reinforce your reputation for dependability and reliability. 

• When you overcome adversity, you learn valuable skills that will serve you in other parts of life and business. 

5. Instill Passion in All That They Choose to Do

Parents can play a huge influence in determining a child’s work ethic and habits. This means that how you talk about your work and job, including your happiness or lack thereof with it, helps to shape the ideas about work that your children will likely adopt. You want them to know that it is possible to love what you do because when you make your passion your work, it really doesn’t feel like work. 

To do this, talk about what you’re learning and why it matters to you.

Lead by example and demonstrate the importance of continual education by living it.

Allow your kids to see you reading books, doing research, listening to podcasts in the car, and taking courses. You can involve them by explaining what skills you’re looking to improve and by sharing your goals.

Instilling passion also involves allowing them to try things that interest them. Providing them space to follow their hearts opens up opportunities for real passions to develop. 

The point isn’t necessarily to encourage your kids to become entrepreneurs themselves. It’s to teach them the values that enable it and help them in any industry they choose to go into. In any career, you have an advantage when you embody hard work, grit, and, above all, passion. 

Mary Nhin

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