It is time we take our “Shop Sheridan” motto one step further. This summer, let’s support our young — very young — entrepreneurs.
There is any number of ways for teenagers to make a couple of bucks this summer — dog walking, lawn mowing, babysitting, lemonade stands and dog poop scooping are just a few.
Sheridan has had a few young entrepreneurs make themselves known to the community. Over the last couple summers, a shoe shiner and a snow cone maker became regular vendors at events like the Third Thursday Street Festivals.
Endeavors like theirs can be extremely beneficial to their future and should be encouraged. Jobs of any kind for young adults can help keep them busy, and therefore out of trouble.
Jobs, especially self-run businesses, teach teens to control their finances. They can learn to budget not only for things they want to buy, but for equipment needed to continue their business and time it takes to complete tasks.
Young entrepreneurs also learn marketing skills. It is hard to earn any money mowing lawns if nobody knows that you do it. Young people have to learn to sell not only their skills and services, but also themselves. While many individuals are willing if not eager to help out an enthusiastic kid, if the sales pitch is rude, pushy or pricey, hiring opportunities will likely be slim. Other marketing skills could include designing a social media campaign to introduce their business — perhaps even a website — hanging flyers and networking.
Business know-how also teaches teens to stick to their word. If a certain level of work is promised at a specific time and at a specific cost, few will rehire or recommend an individual who doesn’t follow through.
Many top businessmen and women started in humble jobs. For example, Warren Buffet started out as a grocery bagger and paperboy. Michael Bloomberg worked as a parking lot attendant.
Kevin Plank, CEO of Under Armour, started out mowing lawns.
Summertime can bring with it idle hands and sleepy minds. Let’s encourage our youth by supporting their businesses this year. Shop local!