BY STEVEN GORDON, LEMONADE DAY NATIONAL PRESIDENT
Kids and entrepreneurship may not seem like an obvious fit. Doesn’t an entrepreneur have to be an adult? Or a millennial in a hoodie? In short, the answer is a definitive no — kids are capable of so much, including learning the fundamentals of starting and running their own businesses.
Being introduced to these skills and lessons early in life through programs like Lemonade Day has countless benefits. Here are a few reasons to introduce your child to entrepreneurship:
1. Kids are actually interested in learning business!
A survey by Gallup Poll indicates that many students have a strong interest in entrepreneurship.
2. Connecting school with the real world
By learning how academic skills connect to real business opportunities and hopes for success, students can be motivated to work harder in school. It’s no longer just about grades, but a broader understanding of what lies beyond school. Kids begin to connect what they are learning in the classroom with skills needed in the real world. This is an important connection that can be very motivating for students.
3. An exciting way to channel talent
Being an entrepreneur involves wearing many hats…. Finance, marketing, branding, management, customer service, product innovation and more. When children have the experience of starting and running their own business, they get to try on these hats and see what they like best. It’s fun and can be a very eye-opening experience that can spark a passion, influencing what kids choose to do with their studies and ultimately career.
4. Teaching innovation
Kid entrepreneurs get to create their own business plan. Through the Lemonade Day program, they make lots of decisions including what products to sell, what cost to sell them at, how to brand their business, how to reach customers and where to set up their lemonade stand. They are making decisions at every level and innovating along the way. This is an empowering feeling for kids. It’s not very often that kids get to be “the boss”, but when you introduce children to entrepreneurship you are allowing them this very special experience.
5. …and resilience
Part of being “the boss”, is sometimes realizing that you wished you would have done things differently. Lemonade Day kid entrepreneurs learn that this is okay. Maybe you priced your lemonade product too high. Or perhaps the location of your stand was slow. Understanding how to learn from experience is a critical lesson itself. Sometimes you don’t know what will work until you give it a go. It’s what you do with that information that matters.
Do you want to participate in next year’s Lemonade Day? Contact your local city to find out how your child can learn to be an entrepreneur or learn how you can volunteer in your community.
Since 2007, the Lemonade Day program has been teaching leadership and business skills by encouraging children to launch a lemonade business in their community. The organization inspires young people, with a desire to learn business skills and financial literacy, to set up their lemonade stand where they can apply customer service skills, collaborate with business owners and investors and experience real-world business owner challenges.
Lemonade Day has expanded to over 80 licensed markets in the United States (including six U.S. military bases), Canada, Bermuda and South Africa. More than one million children and thousands of adult mentors have participated in Lemonade Day since 2007. Adults can register a child to participate in Lemonade Day and give them a taste of the sweet success that comes with owning their own business. For more information, visit lemonadeday.org.