Over the past couple of years, I have been fortunate enough to meet and work with hundreds of entrepreneurs from all ages and walks of life.
While the experiences shared and lessons learned have helped shape my thinking in and around business, none have been more influential than the time I have spent with entrepreneurs through my involvement as a mentor for the Club Kidpreneur Foundation.
Club Kidpreneur is a social enterprise founded by one of Australia’s most successful entrepreneurs, Creel Price.
Price started his own strawberry-growing business at the age of 11 and, at 25 co-founded Blueprint Management Group with a $5,000 investment, that he sold ten years later for more than $100 million.
Through after school care programs, holiday camps, online engagement and the annual $50 Challenge, the Foundation helps kids between the ages of 8-12 start and grow their own micro-enterprises.
Price believes that being a kidpreneur had a dramatic impact on him as a child and, it helped give him the confidence to be a successful entrepreneur later in life.
Graham Berman, the General Manager of Club Kidpreneur, told me, “There are many kids in Australia who have the passion and determination to become successful entrepreneurs. We want to make having your own business ‘cool’ again. Our aim is to reach 20,000 primary school kid across Australia, to spark their entrepreneurial spirit, build business acumen, confidence and resilience and, in the process, raise $1,000,000 for charity. It’s about engaging business to make a positive impact on the planet.”
It’s a grand and awesome plan, one that every entrepreneur should support.
But, as I said, I’ve learned a lot from my involvement in the Foundation.
Eight lessons I’ve learned from kids about being an entrepreneur
Whether you are thinking about becoming an entrepreneur or you already are one, here these are the eight things I’ve learned from kids. I am confident, that if you apply these lessons, they will have a profound impact on your business:
1. Get creative
Creativity comes naturally to Kidpreneurs.
Realism and cynicism haven’t taken hold. Every day they are innovating and inventing things. As an entrepreneur you need to consistently innovate if you are to remain at the forefront of your industry.
2. Be bold
Kids constantly take risks. They are not afraid of anything and, with their can-do attitude, will eagerly dive into challenging situations.
So, do something you’ve never done before in business and, do it today. Pick up the phone and make a sales call, learn a new skill, expand your service. Embrace your inner kidpreneur!
3. Be personable
I find kidpreneurs are naturally sociable and make friends rather easily.
This is a very important trait to develop as an entrepreneur as we must learn to connect, network and get along with others, building relationships between people, things, facts and ideas.
4. Decision making
Kids are great at making decisions. They may not necessarily end up making the right ones but, nevertheless, decisions are made in a timely manner. They haven’t heard of procrastination.
This is definitely something we can all learn from!
Kids are big dreamers. They understand they are not limited and, aren’t afraid to fail. They also readily learn from their mistakes.
As entrepreneurs I believe we need to be braver, make harder choices and understand that failure is a valuable part of the business journey, not something to be avoided.
6. Have passion
Kidpreneurs put passion, and love, into everything they do. Just take a look at the delighted faces of kids selling their homemade keyrings, candles or, cupcakes at a market day. Their passion is contagious!
Customers sense it and, can’t resist perpetuating the smiles with a purchase. Be passionate about your project, your work and your team.
7. Have fun
The person you become in the process of achieving your goal, is more important then the goal itself.
Enjoy your time in business, learn to take the good with the bad and remember -if it’s not fun, it’s not worth it.
8. Be open-minded
Children face life with open eyes, interpreting things in their own unique ways, unafraid to change, or to re-chart, their course.
Every entrepreneur must be bold to create and innovate. Remember, that the failures in life are not you getting the wrong answer, but an opportunity to ask a whole new question.
Plus, there should always be ice-cream.
Alex Pirouz is an Entrepreneur, Author and Business Mentor who assists companies successfully start, grow and exit their business. Connect with Alex on LinkedIn