you probably want your child to spend less time on holidays watching TV, playing video games or complaining that there’s nothing to do?
A summer/Holiday business can be a fun way to encourage creativity and confidence.
These business ventures aren’t really about making money. In fact, if extra income is the priority for the summer, a job is the safer route. But starting a business provides an invaluable life experience for kids, plus it develops very practical skills like organization, money management, problem solving and communication
1. Get in the right mindset
To start a business as a kid, you must first be in the right mindset. You must appreciate the value of money and understand its workability. You must never see yourself as a kid. You must also understand the fact that money is not scarce; as it is touted to be.
2. Think up a Good Business idea or find a business opportunity
“If you want to make money fast, simply solve other peoples’ problems or satisfy their needs.”
As the entrepreneurial spirit within Ada grew stronger, she began to see business opportunities around that others couldn’t see. She even saw opportunities within my mom’s business premises that even my mom couldn’t see. Now how did my sister “Ada” come up with the idea of starting a call centre and voucher retailing outlet?
While managing my mom’s shop, my Ada observed that the woman running a call centre shop opposite my mom’s does not open shop regularly. After carefully observing the woman for sometime; my sister drew up a plan and went about researching the ins and outs of running a call centre.
Her plan was to fill the gap left by the woman. Now this was how she came up with the idea. It wasn’t rocket science. My sister simply saw a need which was fueled by a woman’s lack of punctuality and she filled it.
3. Raise the needed capital
Now how was a girl of thirteen able to raise the needed capital to start her business? Well, my sister “Ada” is known in the family for her enterprising spirit and the call centre wasn’t her first business adventure. While managing my mom’s shop, Ada observed that there were some items that customers were demanding but my mom wasn’t stocking them.
When Ada took the observation to my mom, my mom said she wasn’t interested in selling these items because their profit margin was low. But my sister also took note of the fact that while the profit margin for these items was low, the demand was high. So instead of allowing my mom’s negativity stop her; she decided to stock these items with her own money.
With the little she has in savings, she raised more money from my two younger brothers with the promise of repaying them with interest at a set time. That was how she started trading on retail items in my mom’s shop. As for the call centre start-up, she raised capital from her savings and got addition capital from my mom but the total start-up fund was nothing to write home about. But did lack of sufficient capital despair her? The answer is no.
4. Start the Business
Armed with insufficient capital and the will to succeed, my sister launched the business. Sincerely speaking, it was hell for her in the early stage of her business. I recalled how she bootstrapped the business; constantly racing between her shop and her supplier’s, because she was running on a lean budget. At this crucial stage, passion and the joy of owning her own business was what kept my sister going.
Gradually, she built capital, made some mistakes which made her cry, lost money to some dubious customers and grew in experience. As business progressed, my sister became experienced in the act of dealing with customers, handling finances, studying trends and growing a business.
5. Keep the ball rolling
As at the time of writing this, my sister is still in the business; grinding it out. But this time, she now has two call centre outlets instead of one. Favour, the last daughter of my parents now handles Ada’s new call centre outlet. Though Favour is only 11 years old; she handles the business with competence and confidence because she has been groomed by Ada in the art of running a successful call centre business.
In conclusion, I want to point out that nothing is impossible to a willing heart and age is only a matter of numbers. One of the reasons why I encourage parents to start a business for their kids is because the financial education and real life experience that a kid receives while running a business can never be acquired in school.
So if you have your kid walks up to you with an idea, don’t turn that kid down; don’t look down on that kid. Rather, give such a kid the needed mental and financial support; and most importantly, help that kid start a business no matter how small it is. Who knows, you might just be grooming the next Bill Gates or Steve Jobs.