Never Too Young For Business: How Four Kids—All Aged 10 And Under—Started Their Own BusinessWith the help of their parents, these four young boys launched a food business through a kid entrepreneur bazaar.by Riyalyn Grace Pasimio . Published Sep 29, 2023
As parents, one of the skills we want our kids to learn is financial literacy–handling, spending, and saving money. But what if we can upgrade that skill to earning and investing money, even at a young age?
Smart Parenting had the opportunity to talk to four kids, all 10 years old and younger, who started a small food business, Sweet and Salty Pinas.
One of the moms of Sy-Sison cousins, its founders, Christine Sison said it was the parents' idea to introduce them to entrepreneurship. “We joined Kiddopreneur with the primary goal of providing our children with a comprehensive introduction to entrepreneurship, encompassing the entire journey from conceptualization to implementation. We wanted to instill in them a sense of ownership and initiative,” she said.
Christine and her husband Raymond are also business owners themselves, “Elijah and Noah have been immersed in the world of business and entrepreneurship ever since they were toddlers, as we involved them in our own business endeavors.”
Her sons Elijah (7 years old) and Noah (3 years old) are both homeschooled and had early exposure to business. Christine said, “Being homeschoolers afforded us the unique opportunity to expose them to our workplace, enabling them to witness firsthand what it takes to establish and operate a business. Through our participation in Kiddopreneur, we empowered them to not only have their own business idea but also to take charge of management and execution.”
She emphasized that they gave as much independence to the kids in the whole process of the business, “While we were present as mentors and guides, we placed a significant emphasis on encouraging their independence and self-reliance throughout the entire entrepreneurial process. This hands-on experience has been an invaluable learning journey for them, equipping them with essential life skills and a deeper understanding of the world of business.”ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW
Family business: cousins turned partners
“Our children’s business, Sweet & Salty Pinas, started as a family venture aimed at creating memorable learning experiences for our kids, Elijah and Noah. To make it even more special, we invited their cousins to join in the fun, turning it into a true family business.”
Elijah and Noah’s cousins, Isaiah (10 years old) and Liam (7 years old) also joined them in Sweet and Salty Pinas. The Sisons assisted their kids and nephews by holding brainstorming and planning sessions where they discussed "everything from product ideas to business names, logo making, operational planning, and marketing strategies,” Christine shared.
They also made sure that the kids were involved in the whole business process, “this included hands-on experience in production, selling, and marketing, allowing them to truly grasp what it means to run a business from start to finish,” Christine said.CONTINUE READING BELOWwatch now
Challenge: guiding versus controlling
As with all other businesses, they also had their own set of challenges.
For the parents, “One of the main challenges was striking the right balance between guiding them and ensuring they comprehend every facet of the business, while still respecting their autonomy and allowing them to take the lead in their entrepreneurial venture,” Christine shared.
'We plan activities in manageable increments. This approach helped to keep them engaged and prevented them from becoming bored or overly fatigued along the way.' —Christine Sison on how they managed kids' attention span
She continued, “We wanted to honor their desires and not inadvertently overshadow their business ideas with our own.”
Another challenge for them is the kids’ attention span. Naturally, kids have shorter attention spans, that’s why they came up with a strategy to address this challenge.
“We plan activities in manageable increments. This approach helped to keep them engaged and prevented them from becoming bored or overly fatigued along the way. It was all about finding the right rhythm that allowed them to learn and enjoy the process without feeling overwhelmed,” Christine said.ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW
From the kids’ perspective
Even though there are numerous invaluable lessons learned by kids during their business ventures, there is still an even more important question: Did they enjoy?
“I had fun!”, was the immediate answer of Elijah. He shared what he enjoyed the most, “There were many people selling some stuff.”ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW
Elijah added, “I liked helping people and giving them free taste.” It must be part of the reason why Sweet and Salty Pinas won the Best Service Award at the recent Kiddopreneur event.
'I love that you can earn money as a child,' —Isaiah Sy, 10 years old, on what he's learned from his business
Isaiah said that he enjoyed being with people during the event. “It was fun, and the experience is so cool. It’s so fun, like you get to meet new people, but talking as me. I love the people and [that] you could earn money as a child.”
The kids also shared the challenges they met during the event. Elijah shared, “Hardest part is going back and forth, going back and forth inside the booth. Because I keep running back and forth like 40 times" (for the change, stocks, etc.).
Isaiah added that he was “super tired and knocked out” after selling the whole weekend. He also shared the lessons he learned, “Look at what the customer needs, ask them there. Don’t sit around and walk and wait. You need to engage them to your product. So just don’t be lazy.”ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW
Of course it was also great Math practice, as they did their own costing and computations.
Lessons and future plans
After Kiddopreneur, we are curious about the future plans for Sweet and Salty Pinas, as well as Christine and Raymond’s lessons learned during the endeavor.
“Our children have proven themselves more than capable of assuming leadership roles and taking ownership when we provided them with the space and platform to do so. We are committed to nurturing their entrepreneurial journey, as it has been a remarkable learning experience for them,” she said.
'We firmly believe that providing our children with real-world exposure and teaching them practical skills is far more valuable than relying solely on textbook knowledge.' —Christine Sison
Christine added, “Witnessing our kids mature and handle various situations has provided them with invaluable life lessons. They’ve learned how to deal with different people and handle rejection, honed their skills in upselling, explored intricacies of marketing promotions, ensured quality control in the production of products, and much more. Each of these experiences has contributed to their growth and development.”ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW
Sweet and Salty Pinas Premium Potato Chips and homemade cookies continues as an online business.
Tips on helping your kids start their own business
“We firmly believe that providing our children with real-world exposure and teaching them practical skills is far more valuable than relying solely on textbook knowledge,” Christine said.
For them, the best approach to teaching kids is by doing, “The concept of learning by doing is one of the most effective forms of education we can offer our kids.”
“We encourage parents to give their children the opportunity to explore and experience such valuable learning journeys, as it’s through these experiences that we truly witness our kids shine and thrive,” Christine’s message to other parents.
For more information about Kiddopreneur, visit their Facebook page.
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