One of my readers contacted me asking for suggestions on how to best support her 7 year-old daughter who has been inspired to set up her own business for next summer. The daughter would like to set up a stand and their local farmers market and sell lemonade. It’s a big commitment. She (and the mom) must commit to being there six hours, once a week for five months. They will have to find business insurance as well.The mom would like to help her daughter achieve her goal. Over the upcoming year she’d like to teach her basic business skills, help her open a bank account, and work out the kinks. She asked for my thoughts, and here they are.
Start reading. Lemonade for Sale by Stuart Murphy is an excellent book and introduction to the business your daughter has decided to launch. Reading Rainbow ran a segment along with the introduction of this book many years ago. Google the book title and you will find this and many other great “reading” ideas for you and your daughter to share as you plan your business for next summer.
Contact the local Chamber of Commerce for ideas on insurance. The people who run the local farmers market will also have some ideas. Even a local insurance agent will be willing to sit down and talk with you and your daughter about insurance options.
If you can, find a community bank to open the bank account. Community banks are more willing to sit down and make an investment of time to teach her about the account. Even advise her a bit about her upcoming business. Who knows — they might even decide to sponsor her and help her with her upfront expenses.
Finally, you will need to make sure she understand the COST of starting this business and that everything, down to the lemons, needs to be subtracted from the money she gets before she can call that money “profit.” That may be the best lesson — her ability to have a hands-on opportunity to learn about the expense side of a business.