As parents, we long to raise our children to be strong, capable, independent citizens who make significant societal contributions. We also expect to equip them with the appropriate tools to manage themselves financially, however, we often lead them astray when it comes to teaching them how to really take charge of their financial destinies. We excel at growing future employees who are content to take orders, accept a set pay rate and maintain a predictable career – all great attributes of a responsible working man or woman. On the flip side, one has to wonder if this is the best we can do for them.
How about growing kiddos to be entrepreneurial bosses; goal achievers who seek satisfaction in pushing themselves to be the very best of who they are? Here’s the bottom line: entrepreneurs are big-picture thinkers known to make big differences in the world. The Aitken Home Team presents three steps to raising future entrepreneurs:
1. Financial Management
Unfortunately, many who have experienced a bankruptcy can attribute such circumstances to a lack of parental teaching regarding budgeting and financial management. It is imperative to the success of any child that parents teach sound financial principles. Whether exposing a child to Dave Ramsey’s envelope system, teaching them to tithe to a local church, or simply demonstrating the importance of saving for a highly desired video game, children must be taught how to manage expenses, savings, and wealth accumulation in order to be financially stable adults. Don’t be tempted to give your child what they want. Make them earn it. They will reap the benefits in the long run as they enjoy the satisfaction of achieving a goal with the desired end result!
2. Return on Investment
Children are smart. Oftentimes, they outsmart adults! Don’t be fooled into thinking your child cannot grasp common financial principles. Once your children understand the concept of budgeting, it is time to move on to ROI (return on investment). Kids need to know that their savings account is worth something and that it doesn’t just sit in the bank unused. Teach them about bank statements, interest, how to choose the best interest-bearing accounts, and why stored, “unused” money is so important. Show them how to keep an eye on the market and teach them about recessions and dividends. Who knows? You might be raising a future Wall Street stockbroker!
3. Be Flexible
Teaching your children to be flexible is important on many levels, but even more so when it comes to finances. For example, we all know that many of today’s jobs will not exist in fifteen years. We also know that almost two-thirds of today’s kids will hold jobs or careers that have not yet been birthed. In equipping your child to function financially, you are adding a myriad of tools to their life arsenals. They need to establish basic skills such as tact, positivity, communication skills and they need to know how to relate well to those with whom they will eventually be working. More critical skill sets consist of public speaking/debate, logic, negotiation, and networking – all of which require the aforementioned basics. In addition, teach them how to look at problems from every angle and to think creatively in regards to problem-solving.
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There will always be teachable financial concepts for parents to exercise during child-rearing such as leverage, taxes, etc. The thing to remember is that most employees loathe the 9-5 gig and wish they’d gone about selecting a career differently. As someone once said, “be the change you wish to see in the world” and that change typically starts with the next generation! Give your children the tools to financially succeed in their future, unknown economy and you will have parented wisely.
For more information, contact The Aitken Home Team today!