Perhaps one of the most exciting sentences a parent can hear a child exclaim is: “I want to start a business!” Sure, every parent might dream (even just a little bit) about their kid becoming the next Mark Zuckerberg or Richard Branson, but just getting them to initiate starting their first business can be an incredibly powerful step. The world of entrepreneurship can be one of the most rewarding teachers available, and what better time to learn those lessons than at a young, impressionable age? However, as most of us know, getting a venture off the ground can be one of the toughest challenges out.
Given the amount to consider when it comes to starting a business with your child, we’ve compiled some helpful tips for you both to follow. While getting things going at first might be tough, I guarantee this will be one of the most treasured experiences you’ll endure.
Learn What Their Business Is and How It Will Make Money
While you’re probably elated that your child has decided to take the route of entrepreneurship, one of the most valuable lessons they have to learn is that their business has to make money. Now, that’s not to say they shouldn’t pursue their interests, but in addition to pursuing their passions or solving a relevant problem, they also need to consider how their solution can spark revenue.
Start by having them look at what they're passionate about and how they can solve an issue within that community. It’s helpful to look for something that’s readily applicable to developing. Believe it or not, these can be some of the most sustainable business models, as well as (potentially) pretty successful. Finally, make sure the business model is one that has a structure that has a direct exchange of supply and demand, whether that be a product or service.
Establish an LLC
This may seem like an obvious point, but forming an LLC is one of the most crucial things you can do in getting a business off the ground. Not only is it incredibly easy, but it will also teach your child about the incentives and benefits that come with starting a business.
Given that this is most likely your child’s first endeavor, I’d recommend making the LLC something of an umbrella company. That way if the business fails or goes through a rough patch, then they at least have the legal standing to continue receiving certain tax breaks and incentives. Overall, the goal here is to still have the option to pursue other endeavors even if one doesn’t become fruitful.
Make Sure They Have An Identity and Story
Perhaps one of the most important things your child’s business should have is an identity. Not only does this include having a logo, but making sure it’s one that’s well-designed. Part of this goes back to the initial intentions of starting the business, with the story/brand mission playing a key role. Once that’s established, you can get rolling into the crucial details. However, finding this takes some serious soul searching and reflection.
While your child’s business may not become a global entity like Apple or Nike, it is worth acknowledging its unique value proposition in its given market. Every company, even those entering crowded market spaces, bring something a little different to the table, be it through product, service, voice, or brand. Take the time to carve out what these values really are. This process will be not only a great learning lesson but additionally, can lead to an avenue of consulting or branding in the future.
Encourage Them Keep Up With Industry Trends
One of the final points I’ll note is that for your child to successfully get their business off the ground and cultivate its growth, they have to keep up with the latest and greatest trends. This can range from trends relevant to their industry and competitors to studying the newest innovations in marketing. Some great resources starting out might be looking into leadership programs, as well as checking out popular forums such as Digital Marketer.
Finally, I’ll note that this can also be a great experience for kids to learn about their true interests, as well as what their strengths and weaknesses. These skills and practices will leave an indelible impression upon them for the rest of their lives, and give them a clearer path regarding what they want to do with their career. So, go out, start working, but most importantly, have fun. This is an amazing experience to cherish together.