Entrepreneurial Children Have Parents Who Do These 11 Things
When you see successful entrepreneurs like Elon Musk, Sara Blakely and Richard Branson you have to wonder: What kind of magician conjured these amazing people?
But the fact is, parenting an entrepreneur can be the same as parenting a great human being. You just need to encourage several simple habits.
On Quora, this question came up: ‘How do I raise entrepreneurial kids?’ Peter T. Mayer, founder of MyFingerprintArt.com, had a terrific answer that is worth sharing:
1.Teach them the value of money early on. Even if you can, don’t buy them everything. Let them earn whatever they want.
Money, it makes the world go around — but there is a limit to it, as any business owner knows.
2. Teach them the value of hard work. Have them do work for you either at home or in your business or job and reward them.
In a recent story in The Economist’s 1843 Magazine, Elon Musk’s mother, Maye, revealed her secret to raising the world’s most famous entrepreneur, as well as two other extremely successful children. As a business owner, Maye worked from home and made sure young Elon, Kimbal and Tosca helped out.
“It really helped us to get a sense of independence as well as understand work ethics,” Maye Musk said.
Similarly, Mayer’s advice emphasizes the importance of hard work – even if it’s as simple as answering mom’s phone.
3.Teach them responsibilities. Teach them that they are responsible for their own things and certain things need to be done by them.
Parents often have trouble resisting to do everything for their kids, but successful and happy children need to take ownership of their own lives.
4. Teach them the concept of sacrifice. To reach a goal in life, they might have to make sacrifices small and large.
You can’t always have your cake and eat it too, especially in business.
5. Teach them that every choice they make has pros and cons. They are the ones who have to live with the consequences.
On a recent podcast, author Tim Ferris and Wild writer Cheryl Strayed bonded over their love of pros and cons lists. No matter what your age, thinking about the consequences of any decision is an excellent skill – and it’s one you can teach early on.
6. Teach them independence. Let them do things alone.
While business encourages networking and opportunities, at the end of the day, a strong startup is reflective of a strong entrepreneur. Make sure they know how to be independent and a self-starter.
7. Teach them perseverance. Sports and martial arts are great for this.
Football gets a bad rap these days because of head injuries – and rightly so. But there are other sports and activities that can teach your child that when the going gets tough, they need to keep on pushing.
8. Teach them competitiveness. Again, sports are probably the best way to try to get this out of a child.
In life, not everyone gets a participation medal. At some point, there are winners and losers, so some form of competitiveness is a key lesson to learn.
9. Help them with their creativity. Let them create things in total freedom with no influence from your side.
You can only learn so much creativity in a video game or in the classroom. Playing an instrument, writing a poem or drawing a picture are tried, tested and true ways to teach them to think outside the box.
10. Let them make decisions.
Big decisions don’t really get easier, but you can get more confident in making them.
11. Finally, the most important thing: Teach them that it is OK to fail.
Some cultures emphasize perfect scores, being the best, winning, being first place, etc; but to be a successful entrepreneur, a child needs to be raised up in an environment where he is taught to stand up after a failure and learn from it and not let be down by it.
We need to stop seeing failure as completely negative, especially for entrepreneurs. As you might have heard, 99% of startups fail. So, in the words of Will Smith: “Failure is a massive part of being successful.”