Enter your keyword

Too young to start a business?

The thoughts of Richard Osborne on many subjects over the years.

Too young to start a business?

My 11 year old daughter has decided she wants to start her own business so that she can earn her own money to buy her own things. She took it upon herself to use the home computer to design her own logo, design her own brochure/flyer and even set her own price list (with some guidance from Mummy).

Molly-Ann showing our dog Marley at the Kislingbury village dog show.

As her parents we’re really pleased to see this entrepreneurial spirit in our daughter and have really encouraged her. She has set-up her own little dog walking and dog training service, something she really enjoys doing with our own family dog Marley and clearly has a knack for. By providing her the encouragement to do this, without pushing, its helping her develop her independence and also to associate work with reward. When she can buy something she wants with the money she worked to earn she would have learnt the value of it.

However not everyone shares this view and some believe she is too young to be doing this, so how young is too young? She decided to do this herself, perhaps inspired by seeing her dad run his own business, but nonetheless she came up with the idea herself. My personal view is it doesn’t matter what age a child comes up with their own business idea as a parent you should allow them to pursue it irrespective whether you personally believe in the idea or not. What is important is to support the child and guide them to think of their own ideas, see things through, and even learn from their mistakes. If it doesn’t work help them understand why it didn’t and then encourage them to try again learning from those mistakes. If it is a success let them enjoy the rewards of the success.

We’ve naturally ensured she only delivers her flyers to close friends and family so we know who she would be working for, the dog training would be in our garden, and the pets she would be looking after are ones we know she can handle. These are natural parental precautions to take and should always be taken and if your should wants to start their own business it is sensible to ensure it is something they can safely do.

I do not believe any age is too young for someone to show flair to start their own business and it should always be encouraged, but as a parent you should calculate the risk involved dependent on the situation and be a cautious parent and a supportive mentor if your should wants to start their own business. Who knows where it could lead them!