Do you have young entrepreneurs in your home? Are you wondering how to encourage them and help them get started with their own business? I believe that helping your kids get started in business at a young age is a great way to prepare them for life. Who knows? Maybe one day they will be running their own company! For this review, we got to check out products from Micro Business for Teens. We received two eBooks: Starting a Micro Business and Running a Micro Business as well as the Micro Business for Teens Workbook. This product is aimed at ages 10-18 and I used it with my 12 and 15 year old sons.
First a little background: My oldest son started his own business detailing cars when he was 13 to earn money to pay for youth summer camp. That first year he earned over $450 in about 6 months washing cars. For the last two years he has built a consistent business that allows him to earn more than enough to pay for camp as well as spending money for himself. I am very proud of his hard work and dedication, but I was not sure how to get him going in the right direction to make this a solid business he could use to support himself while in high school. My younger son loves to watch Shark Tank, and he is always coming up with ideas for businesses, but not all of them are feasible. So, I wanted to find a way to help him hone his creative ideas to come up with a workable plan.
We read the Starting a Micro Business for Teens book first. It begins with a discussion of what a Micro Business is, how it functions, ideas for a Micro Business, and developing a business plan. These first chapters were very important. Through our discussion, my younger son decided he would like to start a dog-walking and dog-washing business. We live in a very dog-friendly neighborhood, seriously, people are walking their dogs all day long around here. One of the basic principles of a micro-business is that it has low start up costs. Also, micro businesses are easy to manage and often have only one worker, the owner. Dog washing and walking costs very little to get started. Basically just soap, towels, leashes etc. It is also easy to schedule time-wise. For my older son, he was interested in developing the business plan so he could take his car detailing business further.
The Micro Business for Teens Workbook was very helpful. It had questions and exercises for each chapter that helped students brainstorm ideas, write up their business plans, draft financial plans, and more. My older son in particular was interested in working out a long-term financial plan for his business. His main costs were the materials he uses to wash the cars, and gas to get to and from different locations. He looked at the costs of several car washes, waxes, etc. to find the best product he could use for the best value. By the time he finished the exercise, he had a solid draft of a plan that I think will help him a lot going into the summer.
In the Running a Micro Business for Teens eBook, students get into the topics of sales, marketing, record keeping, and legal issues. The information on sales and marketing was especially appealing to both of my kids. My older son wanted some ideas of ways he could promote his business to get more customers, while my younger son was looking for ways to just get started. They both came up with some ideas of how to further promote themselves, mainly focusing on encouraging referrals from current customers, and using social media to advertise for free.
You can set your own schedule for working through these courses. Depending on the age of your child, it could take anywhere from six weeks to a few months. We are still going through the Running a Micro Business book because I wanted to make sure we give it an in-depth look, and I think if you combined this with other resources on the internet and from the library, you could flesh this out into a half-semester course. The best thing about these products is their low cost. The Starting a Micro Business and Running a Micro Business eBook costs $4.95 while the paperback is only $9.95. The Micro Business for Teens Workbook eBook costs $9.95 while the paperback version is $14.95. If you have teens or preteens who want to get started in their own business, or children who have already started a business and just need some direction to keep it going, I think these are definitely worth it!
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