Here’s Why We Should Encourage Entrepreneurship In Our Children

Most of us associate the word “entrepreneurship” with people starting their own business. While this perception is certainly not wrong, it doesn’t do justice to the entire concept of entrepreneurship. There is more to being entrepreneurial than just owning a business venture. Whoever has the ability to think outside the box can be deemed to have entrepreneurial tendencies. If you have a knack for solving problems, and work ethic that is motivated by the desire to continuously grow as a person, you can consider yourself to be entrepreneurial — even if you have a regular 9 to 5 job!

In today’s job market, and the world in general, just having the required educational qualification is not enough. Innovation, market awareness, and a positive attitude are all key factors in personal success. Gone are the days when just dedication to your job was enough to keep you going. In modern times, continuous improvement and an extra spark is essential to be considered good at what you do. Even when you go for a job interview, these are the personality traits that companies are looking for in an ideal candidate.

Most people aren’t born with entrepreneurial characteristics. Some hint of that extra flair in their personality might be there from an early age, but any young person ultimately has to be groomed properly to become an efficient and effective individual later in life. It is a testament to the importance of planting the seed of entrepreneurship early on that a lot of successful businesses and startups we see around us have been formulated by students or fresh graduates. These people would not have been able to accomplish much unless they had an entrepreneurial approach to life since childhood.

How I Was Introduced To Entrepreneurship

For those who don’t know me, I am the co-founder of a price comparison startup called PriceOye.pk. I have been very fortunate that I found a business partner in Adnan early on in my career and while this is one of the most important catalysts behind my startup’s success, it isn’t the only one. Even as a young teenager, I had a passion for bringing business ideas to life and carrying out small experiments.

My first personal “entrepreneurial” earning came through a flash of inspiration when I was a matriculating student. Near the final exams when most students are in a frenzy of last-minute revisions and exchanging notes, I noticed that a student from a competing school was making high quality notes for different subjects. The fame of these notes had reached our school, but one or two people who had managed to get their hands on the photocopies of the prized entity were reluctant to share them further with anyone else. You can’t really fault them for being competitive against classmates. Fortunately, I had an acquaintance studying at the competing school and he was happy to lend the notes to me. I got them photocopied and sold them to my class-fellows for a very good profit (All of Rs. 500!). In hindsight, the venture was obviously not lucrative, but it taught me some valuable lessons.

Lessons I Learnt From My Boyhood Enterprise

  1. The important thing is to know your market, and figure out what item or service is in demand around you.

  2. In addition to profitability, you should also keep the potential to explore new avenues in your sight.

  3. If you are among the first people to come up with a seemingly ordinary idea, your chances for success are good enough to warrant some investment.

Not that my story has an ending that sees me become the country’s richest businessman or founder of the next Facebook (yet) but the whole episode has helped me grow as a person and given me a chance to see things from a completely new perspective.

Some Ways To Instill Entrepreneurial Skills In Your Kids.

  1. Children are naturally curious about the world and how it works. If this curiosity is valued by adults — including teachers and parents — they ultimately learn the importance of having an appetite for knowledge. Questioning by kids — a natural result of having a curious mind — should always be encouraged!
  2. Showing kids the importance of earning money is paramount to success later in life. Sure you can give them their monthly allowance, but it might end up imbuing them with a sense of entitlement. If you give out some money as a payment for some household chores or other accomplishments, the concept of earning is introduced in a very positive light.
  3. Every once a while, try and explain the inner workings of your job or business to your kids. It is important to avoid talking down to them while doing so. Even if the child doesn’t grasp all concepts in their entirety, the information is sure to broaden his or her field of vision. You can even take them to your office for a day or two to educate them.
  4. Take a healthy interest in their ideas, even if they don’t make sense to you. You can ask them the age-old question of “What do you want to be when you grow up?” and follow it up with “and how do you think people make money doing that?” Of course, earning money is not the only important thing in the world, but money does make the world go round and it’s better if kids learn that from an early age. If a kid has a passion for something that you don’t think will be a feasible career path, it is still better to explore the idea to its core as more often than not you will find some inspiration there.
  5. Stay in touch with what your child’s school is teaching them. Basically, whatever important stuff the school isn’t teaching is exactly what you have to teach them personally. Creativity, communication, creative confidence, and persuasion are just some of the skills that a kid can learn better at home.

It is not about constantly feeling like you are at boot camp, training your kid for the challenges to come. By helping them become entrepreneurial, you get a chance to bond with your children. Not only will the end result help you and your child in the long run, you will surely enjoy the ride, too.

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