Raising Entrepreneurs

First some background: I am a father to an amazing 2 year old son named Neilan who is in the midst of innocently testing as many boundaries as possible with his mother and I, but still has me belly laughing daily at his antics. He’s a true showman. While I believe raising your children to be entrepreneurs is a great thing to encourage – I do not think it is a good thing for everyone enforce. Why? It depends on your child’s personality traits. There’s no boilerplate on how to raise your child – that’s kind of the fun part. It’s up to you to see the traits and react.

The above video had a huge impact on how I approach supporting my son as he gets older. What opened my eyes the most? The things to look for when searching for those “entrepreneurial traits” that may be hard to see in your child. Neilan certainly is capable of having and/or developing these traits, it may be too soon to tell at 2 years old. There’s no doubt it’s in the blood lines. Both his mother’s family and mine have a plethora of entrepreneurial traits and characteristics both in personality characteristics and family history. However, that doesn’t mean his path is already paved. It’s up to us as parents to watch for the traits before we start encouraging. With a parent’s point of view, here are some of my takeaways from the video:

  • Use encouragement instead of limitations to form your child’s interests and capabilities. Don’t build walls, supply them with the tools.
  • Once the entrepreneurial traits are seen, encourage these skills: problem solving, to ask questions, to be creative, to lead others, to learn from mistakes, how to save money, to want to make money, how to sell, to ask for help, public speaking, to never give up, to see solutions.
  • Teach your child to fish, rather than giving them a fish.

What was your most resonating takeaway from the TED video?