How to raise your kids to be entrepreneurs

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Some children may not be born to be lawyers or doctors, or to get good grades in a traditional school, but they might have other skills that could lead them to be great entrepreneurs.

Three years ago, Cameron Herold gave a talk at TEDxEdmonton about raising kids to be entrepreneurs, which you can check out below. As Nafez Dakkak recalls in a previous piece on Wamda, early education is key. 

Business sense, resilience, tenacity, the ability to handle failure and to network, are some of the skills that should, and can, be spotted early on and nurtured to help those kids realize their true calling.

How can parents (and teachers) foster those skills and nurture an entrepreneurial spirit?

Herold explains that parents can teach their kids a few things about business on a daily basis. His tips include:

  • Don’t give children an allowance, entice them to work.
  • Ask children to walk around the house to find what needs to be fixed and pay them for that, but only after you negotiate the price.
  • Teach them to save money.
  • Ask them to tell stories instead of just reading stories.
  • Teach children to sell their used toys on the Internet, to set the price, and even pick a picture.

Kids can teach themselves about entrepreneurship, creativity and business through online classes. Websites like Tahrir Academy offer online videos on many subjects including physics, astronomy, grammar, and even chemical experiments for elementary and secondary school students, that leave room for creativity and diversity.

Those who are a  bit older can turn to Massive Open Online Courses (MOOC) to follow (almost) any university class they want to. It’s essentially a course that is offered online for free to a massive number of people; students can follow business model or Lean Methodology classes. 

If kids have the smallest interest in online business, they should also learn how to code, as it can transform their opportunities, especially in the Arab world. 

Fortunately, education technology is a trend on the rise in the region, especially for children; there are several local apps and services that are offering new opportunities in childhood education. Check out Herold’s talk below to see how entrepreneurship can be a part of childhood education:

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