My six year old wants to start her own business

Ehllene - posted on 01/31/2012 ( 8 moms have responded )

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My six year old daughter wants to start her own business. I am not an entrepreneur and I am finding it hard to advise her. She is very intelligent and ambitious, but a bit of a worrier. What kind of business is suitable for a small child to own? Should a six year old be allowed to start her own small business?

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[deleted account]

Sure, she should be allowed to if it is something she wants to do. That said, she should probably not start a business just to have a business, she should start one because she has something she is passionate about doing. Is she trying to earn money for a big purchase? That can be major motivation. Owning a business, even a small one, is rather demanding!



I started my first business when I was 19. It was a website that connected professional photographers with print vendors so that they could offer a wide array of products without spending hours and hours setting up contracts. I made 1.3 million by my second year. I have since sold that business and started 3 others. I love starting businesses, but it is not easy. I think it is a WONDERFUL thing for you to do with your 6 year old!!



Figure out what she wants to do--the friendship bracelet idea was fabulous. Supply costs will be minimal and she can set up shop at a spare desk in your home. Once she makes a few, she can photograph them and post flier in your neighborhood. If her school does not have a policy against selling, she can use word-of-moth to sell at school. She can also approach local boutiques about selling her work in their stores--TONS of people would buy a bracelet made by an entrepreneurial 6 year old! (go for shops that are managed by their owners--they are small businesses and will be eager to help out other small businesses) She will sell a small bulk to the store (about 20 bracelets), who would then sell at a marked up rate to their customers. When you decided to do this, make a nice display to set up in the store, the owners will be more likely buy them if their customers will be able to see your daughter's story for themselves.



Until she makes over $600 annually, there is no need to legally establish a business. Once her sales exceed that though, you will want to talk to speak to someone in your town hall (if you are within city limits) or county tax office about minor owned sole proprietorship. They will guide you through the process to make sure you do everything legally.

Emma - posted on 01/31/2012

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Something like making and selling friendship bracelets is always a good kid business.

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Rose - posted on 03/23/2014

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Yes. She could start her business already. I started my business when I was 7. My mom accompanied me.If you doesn't have a venue for your business, then you could sell infront of your own house (You may also not ask for license if you are going to sell infront of your house only). She could start but you should get first a license from the city hall if you are going to have a venue for your business. (It should be under your name not your daughter).

Rosswhite1234 - posted on 05/22/2012

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I'm a stay at home dad. I think it is a wonderful idea for kids to start a business. It teaches about working hard, perseverance and money. It also teaches both kids and parents how challenging starting your own business can be and also how rewarding. My daughter started her own business as well. We match all her profits. By the end of the summer she will understand how to read a financial statement. So will I. She has to buy all her supplies. We fronted the first round but as soon as her sales came in most of it went to goods. She gets up at 6 or 6:30 daily, prepares the product, gets ready for school and drops off her product and collects around $10 a day from the local store and he then sells it for retail. Then she races off to 3rd grade. When she comes home she writes down her sale (i own quickbooks, but you can do it in excell or just simply on a piece of paper.)
After buying and stocking goods (materials to make product) she writes down her expenses.
sales-expenses=profits. (basic income statement) She asked me the other day, "Daddy am I in the black yet." That means for those who don't know, your no longer bleeding. your making a profit. it took her 1 week of hard work to get in the black. When I want a cookie, I buy it.
I work with her every morning and completely support her in this. There are many ways your child will express themselves and they may make something, sell it to neighbors and be done. Anytime a child expresses interest in doing any business I believe that it builds self confidence, no matter if its lemon aid, selling rocks to friends or anything and no matter the age, 3, 4 or 25.

and when you....mom get stuck and don't know an answer, google it.

Ehllene - posted on 02/02/2012

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Hi Kelly. I'll use your ideas for the display and we will design her label together.

She has already sold her first few cards to friends and family, just by telling people about it and showing it to them.

I'll check with her school and the local 'home industry' shop as well.

As for the classes, I'll take her to one 30 minute class to help her understand the basics of beading for the bracelets and to see whether it is something she enjoys doing.

Thanks for all your advice.

[deleted account]

You don't need anything fancy--you want her artwork to be in the spotlight.

Take a picture of her and a piece of her art. Use Word to write up her story and put the images on it, display it in a free standing acrylic frame beside a display. (you can buy one at Target for like $5--avoid anything with decoration on it).

You can buy a simple, white bracelet display online for about $20 if you decide to go with bracelets.



You also don't need many classes, unless she just wants to take them. You can look online for weaving patterns for friendship bracelets. To start, use a simple weave, make them all the same way, but let her add her own flair by changing up the colors. Once she masters one weave, she can learn another, and another, then try adding beads and combining different weaves together.



Packaging can also be kept very simple. Check out places like Royal Bag. You can use a clear plastic bag and just design a cute label in Word or Publisher to stick on the front. You have to keep packaging very basic if you are not working from a brick and mortar store.



Oh, and you can also approach the school store. She can donate a few bracelets each week to the school--it will help grow her business, and it is good for the school. If they do well, she school may consider buying from her.



You can also set up a website. Most hosting sites charge around $5/month and offer basic templates for free. She will not be able to sell online with that type sight, but it will get her promotion. She could still take orders through email through the site, but could not accept payment. Once she can afford it, she can invest in an online shopping cart.

Ehllene - posted on 01/31/2012

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Thank you Emma and Kelly.



Emma, I think making bracelets is an excellent idea. She is also learning to make cards and I will send her for various classes for kids in arts and crafts, including beading, thanks to your idea.



Kelly, she has been very passionate about starting a business for more than a year. She says she wants to be an artist and sell her work. She does not want to earn money to buy anything specific. Thanks for the tips.



Then I will have to look at brand, packaging, marketing and displays to advise her.

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