Whether working for a large corporation or operating a small business, people with entrepreneurial mindsets are among those who can find the most fulfillment in their workplaces. With that in mind, what parent wouldn’t want to help their child to develop an entrepreneurial spirit? There are many easy ways to encourage an entrepreneurial spirit in children to help them become resilient, creative, and successful in future ventures and careers.
1- Encourage Curiosity
Parents with inquisitive children might feel drained after a full day of “why? Why? Why?” Be patient and responsive to a child who has a curious and questioning nature. Curiosity about the world and how things work leads to the ability to identify opportunities and solve problems.
2- Blend Play and Work
Encourage and support entrepreneurial activities as a form of play. The backyard lemonade stand may be a cliché, but it is an example of an enjoyable chance to experience the effort and potential profit involved in providing a product or service.
3- Let Children Experience Accountability
Ask a child who wants a new toy or gadget how they will go about earning the money to buy it. Help children think through ways they are capable of earning money and put a plan in motion. A plan can be as simple as an agreed-upon payment each time a child does an extra chore on a list of options.
4- Imagine and Create
Support and encourage imaginative conversations and play. Encourage creative hobbies and activities. An active imagination helps children learn to see problems as opportunities.
5- Show and Tell
A mother who owns a small business herself can have an impromptu “take your child to work” days. A father whose friend owns a business franchise can facilitate an informational chat. Visit and support small businesses in your community and take your child along so they can see how innovative people have created their own opportunities.
6- Make Failure a Safe Experience
An entrepreneurial spirit requires risk-taking. Fear of failure discourages children to stick with what they already know rather than learning to do new things. Children who expect a scolding for failure may avoid trying new activities. Instead of reprimanding, turn failures into learning experiences. Talk about what might have worked better and what they could do differently next time. For entrepreneurs, a willingness to take risks and adapt when things don’t go as planned is a must.
7- Help Make Visions a Reality
Parents can show support by assisting a child with putting their entrepreneurial plans into action. For example, providing transportation and oversight so that a child can sell homemade ornaments at a local craft fair shows them you believe in their ability to achieve their goals and gives them first-hand entrepreneurial experience.
Support and encourage an entrepreneurial spirit in children to help them develop the innovative, resilient mindset needed to one day succeed in starting or growing business ventures. Even children who grow up to choose a more traditional career path will benefit from having an entrepreneurial nature that helps them solve problems and seize opportunities.