The turmoiled economy has been top-of-mind for many of us for several years now and there’s been much talk about how to repair it. What many deem as the answer is entrepreneurship and small business ownership.
When stepping back and looking at the big picture, peering out into the future, it’s clear that our youth represent the future. So how do we encourage them to step into the arena? Especially at a time when young Americans are currently facing some scary statistics:
“Youth employment is at a 60-year low and student loan debt just topped $1 trillion.”
Yikes! Clearly, there’s not a singular solution that’s going to present itself here. But there are things that you and I can do to assist. Things such as:
“Teach entrepreneurship at every level: Empower young people so they can experience free-enterprise opportunities and be self-reliant.”
Teaching youngsters about the benefits of self-employment, educating them about the realities, preparing them for the journey and encouraging them to take the risk can be pivotal to their adult success. You want them to follow their dreams, but you don’t want them diving into the shallow end of the pool, head first. But if you prepare them for the tough work using a realistic approach and provide them with the tools to go the distance, they are better positioned to achieve success and ultimately reap the rewards.
Which leads me to my next point:
“Encourage risk-taking: Support them in taking the next step.”
Now this may somewhat go against the grain of proper instruction to some. It may not initially feel correct to instruct a teen or an early 20’s youth to “be a risk taker.” Because there’s always that chance that you may end up with an adventure loving, globe trotting bungee jumper or a teen borrowing mom and dads car and racing down the highway at 90 miles an hour seeking a rush.
So it’s necessary to encourage positive risk taking versus negative risk taking and to make sure that the message is being internalized properly – i.e. positive risk taking can lead to success, negative risk taking can lead to disaster. So making sure that message is clear is crucial.
The Young Entrepreneur Council wrote a piece titled, “10 Solutions To #FixYoungAmerica And Rebuild The Economy” that includes several additional ways to encourage entrepreneurship and small business ownership with today’s youth.
Take a moment to review the suggestions and share them with the youth’s in your life. Someday – they may thank you for it.
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