Youth entrepreneurship allows young entrepreneurs to use their thinking and creativity to start a business venture. Encourage your children to explore their entrepreneurial ideas and take advantage of different ways to encourage youth entrepreneurship. Student entrepreneurship is beneficial to our economy. It leads to job creation and helps offset issues relating to youth unemployment, such as social exclusion and unrest. Encouraging our youth to explore ideas and develop entrepreneurship skills contributes to a more prosperous and stable society.
Encourage Youth Entrepreneurship & Entrepreneurial Behavior!
Youth unemployment is double the national unemployment average, and they need our support not just in creating positions and hiring them but also in supporting their desire to explore and develop their own ideas.
In our quest for money and paying bills, we need to step back and value their time and desire to grow without the adult stresses. While they are young, we must help them discover their talents and foster creativity and problem-solving capabilities.
Statistics & Society’s Need For Creativity and Innovation From Young Entrepreneurs
The statistics are many, and actual numbers differ. They depend on location, changing economic conditions, and who is surveyed, so don’t jump to conclusions but notice the trends.
We cannot allow any generation to be stifled. Teaching and learning are continuous throughout our lives, so take an active role and help children and young adults learn to start and operate with business skills early on. Many methods exist and work well. Incubator programs work, too, so start your own and ensure future entrepreneurs are empowered.
Given these statistics, the time is now.
For example, one statistic shows 46% of high school students feel hopeless about their future. There was no clear indication of what students were surveyed or factors that could have played into that response, but the study yielded concerning results.
Now consider the stats for youth unemployment.
- Youth in our labor force is defined as the share of the labor force aged 15-24 who do not have a job but are available for and seeking employment. Emphasis on the word “seeking.” This doesn’t include those who gave up.
- In 2020, U.S. youth unemployment rate for 2021 was 9.57%, a 5.28% decline from 2020. (macrotrends.net)
- In May of 2023, statista.com reported youth unemployment at 7.4%. Still twice that of the general workforce.
We could find additional statistics and debate the exact numbers but what’s most important is recognizing it’s it’s an important issue that must be addressed.
- It’s an ongoing problem even for those qualified and excited to work.
- The problem is not going away.
- We cannot blame a lockdown.
- It’s causing significant stress.
- No student should be moving forward without hope when we can help.
Successful Entrepreneurs & How They’re Improving The World
Note: for this article, we’re considering those coming up with their own solution.
- They utilize their own business ideas.
- They impact the local economy with local business development.
- They can create their own job.
- They can literally shape their own future
- They can develop skills and expertise enabling them to develop and manage their business.
- They can create transferable skills allowing them to be hired somewhere else.
- They can partner with others running a business who need help.
- They impact the greater good.
As adults, we know we can’t control much. It gives us a sense of hopelessness and defeat at times, too.
The more we can do to support those willing, able, and brilliantly ready to pursue a future that lives up to their dreams, the more we do for society.
It’s a compound effect.
Startup Business Ideas and Entrepreneurial Programs Built In Middle and High School – or College – Make A Difference
Help young entrepreneurs realize:
Entrepreneurship comes with risk, but also great glory.
It isn’t for the faint of heart or those without fortitude and a great work ethic though, so let’s get them ready!
Ways To Mentor and Encourage Youth Entrepreneurship
Support student growth by building their character and help students develop their skills.
Entrepreneurship is a mindset!
1. Believe in them. Show genuine respect while helping students grow.
2. Own your role as a cheerleader, coach, and supporter as you help them develop their ideas.
3. Encourage creativity. It may start as artwork and how to creatively blend. However it starts, it leads to developing creative solutions to a problem.
4. Encourage them to dream and expand their ability to think and consider new opportunities.
5. Find out what interests them. What’s the spark? Their passion? How can they solve a problem?
6. What comes naturally? Have them answer. Share your observations.
7. What skills are a struggle? Is it a lack of opportunity or lack of interest? If it’s something they “wish” they could do, find ways to build that skill.
8. Help develop their self-esteem by taking that dream and sketching it into their vision.
9. Foster independence by taking that vision and crafting a mission.
10. Develop self-confidence by starting a business plan.
11. Foster a growth mindset by teaching them how to develop a SMART goal.
12. Who’s their target audience? What do they know about them?
13. Start building their personal brand.
14. Talk through the importance communication and how to verbalize what they are looking for.
15. What it means to partner if they are the only employee.
16. Now help them network. Who can help? Who can they speak to learn more and build their out their plan?
17. Figure out what skills they need and alternative ways to develop the skill. For the very young it might be playdates and excursions. For teens and college students it may be networking, mentorships, and internships.
18. Teach them about transferable skills and how not to learn everything the hard way!
19. Encourage a strong work ethic, and help them understand that it’s important and a responsibility.
20. Talk through the difference between work and hobbies, and how enjoyment and purpose on the job is as important as disconnecting to enjoy time focused on a hobby.
21. Teach financial responsibility and why a dollar saved is a dollar earned.
22. Cultivate resilience, and the power of honing a skill (e.g. how many practice swings it takes to hit the ball consistently)
23. Celebrate mistakes as part of risk-taking and teach them why we “get back on that horse.”
24. Teach them to reach goals and recognize positive steps forward no matter how small they may seem.
25. Define the reward for a job well done and discuss different ways to define success.
Mentorships work. Informal coaching works. Use a variety of ways to encourage youth entrepreneurship!
Inspiration them through the stories of other successful entrepreneurs and business leaders.
“If Google teaches you anything, it’s that small ideas can be big.”
– Ben Silbermann, Pinterest
“Everything started as nothing.”
– Ben Weissenstein, Grand Slam Garage Sales
“I think I was very naïve early on, but that also meant I didn’t know what couldn’t be done.”
– Matt Mickiewicz, 99 Designs
Believe in them. Show genuine respect for their ideas and plans as you guide them onto the right path. You are a parent and a friend and a co-worker and a peer. Yes. Be who YOU are, while helping troubleshoot, cheering them on, coaching, and being one of their greatest supporters.
We need students to connect, and we need to help them learn outside of a classroom setting. There are many different business opportunities for them and ways to teach, so jump in! You’ll serve them well.
We need problem solvers, not just those that execute faceless, nameless, “anybody with a brain can do this” functions outlined on a job description.
As humans, we were always better than that. You got this.