Sunday, October 5, 2014


I have heard young entrepreneurs including my son say “I’m never working for anyone”. As much as I love having my own business and working with many business owners, I know what it takes to start and keep a business thriving. I encourage my son and many other young people that have this same desire. As I encourage, I also want to equip them to have a great start and to also know the realities of running their own business. Sometimes you do have to work for other people and it is okay. You gain so many skills that will prepare you for starting and running your own business. I started my son at age 10 in a program called CEO academy that trained young people to start their own business. He was so excited and started his small business RBS Toys and gifts. I knew he was all in when his teacher called to let me know that he couldn’t sell his products at school.

I had no idea that he was doing business at the school. I laughed so hard and then had to come up with my response for him. Go Roland!! I didn’t want to discourage him, but also didn’t want him kicked out of school. You can encourage, empower, and train your young entrepreneur without discouraging them. Start early by teaching them great business skills that will not only help them in business, but while working for someone else too. When Roland started his small business he had to create a business plan and do his own marketing. Listed below are some tips that you can implement with your young entrepreneur to get them started. 

Roland at age 10 and Former Nashville Mayor Bill Purcell

Create a business plan. A strong business plan addresses all the areas that will help establish a strong start. Have them to include: Mission, Vision, Values, Market and budget.

Networking is key. They should attend networking events; contact all of their friends and family members. With social media this will be much easier for them than it was for us in our teens.

Learn about your business area. The more you know about your particular field or business, the better your chances of success. Get a mentor or coach that can assist you. Join young entrepreneur group on high school and college campuses.

Start the business part-time. If you cannot afford full-time investment, start by putting a couple of hours a week into the business. Once you are making income you can start to increase your time.

Do it legally. Do you need a permit? A business license? Do you have to meet certain local guidelines for your particular venture? Make sure that you are within the law at all times.

When it gets hard don’t give up. It pays off if you stick with it. 

Roland at age 19 - Now a Senior in CollegeAdd caption