Lately, I've been reading articles and e-mails from friends who shared their personal stories about businesses that your kids can help with. I've been thinking of starting one actually, but I am not yet certain as to the right time to launch it. In these stories, I read that businesses that your kids can help with can be an effective way of teaching children the value of money as they work hard to earn it and not just feel entitled to have it because they deserve it. Here are seven of those businesses that perhaps you can do with your kids:
1. Food Stands at the Weekend Market
Weekend markets are rich sources of inspiration for small businesses that your kids can help with. My personal favorites are little stalls that sell different sorts of homemade goodies. In one of those weekend markets, I met a mother with her nine-year-old daughter who was selling paella balls (imagine the Spanish dish paella presented like meatballs), which were quite a hit among the market goers . The daughter “works” as a cashier under the supervision of an adult (the adult was actually her nanny).
2. Home-baked Cupcakes & Pastries
My girlfriend Stella encourages her two girls to help her bake cupcakes and pastries every summer (that’s April and May in The Philippines) so they will have cash to buy the things they need for school (the majority of the schools open in June). Her girls even volunteer to go with her in delivering the goodies to their customers. Cute little chefs and businesswomen!
3. Little Trinkets on Facebook
Whatever Annie likes, she shares them to the world and … she sells them too through Facebook. When loom bands became a hot item, she asked her Mom to buy her 20 to 30 sets and posted them on her Facebook page. The mother was more than happy to supervise her young entrepreneur getting orders online and organizing meet ups. Oh, before I forget, Annie’s Mom sells stuffs online too.
4. Electronic Gadgets and Accessories
This story was shared by a very successful Filipino-Chinese entrepreneur, who owns a company that specializes in selling software and hardware products from companies such as HP, Microsoft, Samsung, Lenovo, and IBM to name a few. Her youngest son, eight years old then, found an opportunity for selling the fancy USB drives that were delivered to his Mom’s office to his classmates. The arrangement was that he bought 10 USB drives from Mom and sold them to his classmates with a 10% markup. How’s that?
5. S'mores and Mud Pies’ Store
I met Llenard and his parents when I interviewed them for a story about their little store located near a university. Students were raving about their s’mores and mud pies on social media and my editor and I were curious to try them out. I met his parents – both psychologists – who shared that it was Llenard’s idea to open the store after he attended a summer baking class when he was four years old. Llenard serves as waiter and cashier at the store when he doesn't have any classes.
6. Ready-to-wear Clothes for Children
Your little one can be your model! Selling these days is a lot easier with several social media options so it’s not difficult to gain an online presence. Handpick your choices, take photos of them, and do a lot of social marketing.
7. Online Bookstore
What better way to cultivate love for books and entrepreneurship in your child than starting a business that involves selling of books – preloved or brand new, it’s up to you! I really wish someone in my area was selling children’s books that were personally handpicked by a mother who knows what those books really are like. Or maybe … I should do it?
Do you have any more business ideas that parents and kids can work together?