How Young is TOO Young for Business? Business skills and a good work ethic start MUCH earlier than you think. From the time your child is able to understand and respond to you, they are learning from their surroundings. But what is the RIGHT age to introduce your child to the world of business? Unfortunately there is no exact answer. It is dependent on the maturity and capability of your child. I say YOU KNOW YOUR CHILD! But, from the age of 4 or 5 your child can be helping in SOME capacity in your home business. That’s RIGHT!!! I said 4 or 5 years old.
Children who are actively involved in business at an early age are known to be more creative and more responsible with their own finances. It goes beyond money skills though. The more you involve your child in progressively advancing tasks for your business, they will learn responsibility, the importance of doing a good job the first time, how to talk with people (including adults), and SO much more. Most importantly, with your guidance and reassurance they will build confidence they cannot elsewhere.
What can your children be doing in your business depends on their age and personal development, but there are HUGE benefits to including your child actively in your business.
5 Reasons to Develop Business Skills in your Child EARLY:
Reason #1 to Develop Business Skills Early: Build Deductive Reasoning and Strengthen Math Skills
Ingrain basic money management skills at the earliest possible age. The earlier you introduce these skills will not only help your child with math but also lay the foundation for a lifetime of successful finances. Skills as simple as counting and as complicated as balancing a checkbook are surprisingly common tasks overlooked by mainstream education. These skills will develop your child’s math skills but also help them with basic deductive reasoning needed for success in personal finance.
Reason #2 to Develop Business Skills Early: Instill a Strong Work Ethic
Your child will NOT easily be bored or give up without a fight. Learning to be persistent is a skill that is hard to teach and becoming more rare in the next generation. The instant gratification generation often miss the importance of working hard, never giving up and giving your all to reach your goals.
Reason #3 to Develop Business Skills Early: Learn the Art of Goal Setting
Your child will learn the art of Goal Setting. Whether you have them create their own formal business plan or you work it into your goal setting, your child will know about short term and long term goals, what it takes to reach them, the questions that need to be asked and answered, and hopefully how to set yourself up for success.
Reason #4 to Develop Business Skills Early: Create a Habit of Open Communication
You can create open communication with your child. In the journey towards a common goal, you and your child will have additional opportunities to discuss difficult matters. If approaching with an open, mentoring attitude, you can improve your parent/child relationship long before the added stress of the teen years.
Reason #5 to Develop Business Skills Early: Capitalize on the “Child Sales Phenomena”
If you incorporate your child properly, you can capitalize on what we call the “child sales phenomena.” Who can say “no” to a well spoken, respectful child sales person? How many Girl Scout cookies have YOU turned down? I know I don’t miss a season of those tiny little bits of heaven. Good cookies, yes. But the sweet young ladies that sell them are the real reason I buy. I want to support their entrepreneurial spirit. Imagine applying that to your business. We will investigate this phenomena more in the weeks and months to come.