These days, young people these days are getting more active in society than ever before, becoming activists, role models, and even teen entrepreneurs. The age of the internet extends the reach of budding business people across the globe. Share the inspiring stories of these three teen entrepreneurs with your kids.
Children need role models. And often, they’re even more effective when they’re kids rather than adults. Young people have minds open to every possibility, and they’re looking for opportunities to leave their own mark on the world. It’s impressive and exciting. And your child will probably be excited and inspired to learn about these stories, too.
Just imagine a world without the calculator, without the Braille system, without water skiing, or without trampolines. Did you know all of these things were invented by teen entrepreneurs 18 or younger? Teens have a very keen eye for business – it’s been proven time and time again.
The Braille system was made up by a 15-year-old blind kid. The trampoline was invented by a 16-year-old with a lot of free time and imagination. You don’t need to fill your kid’s head with theoretical economics and financial know-how in order for them kid to have a ground-breaking ideas. All you have to do as a parent is let their minds run free.
What it Takes to Be a Teen Entrepreneur
Ideas will come to your kids provided they live in a healthy environment, with open-minded people surrounding them. The most important thing is not to discourage them by saying their ideas are silly. Challenge them to invent something they could use. And by invent, we mean work out the idea in their minds. And then ask them for their ideas. No matter how silly, take them into account. If there is room for improvement by an adult mind, share your ideas.
In all young entrepreneur success stories, there has probably been at least one adult involved, however remotely. Would you like to be that adult? The parent that silently watches over his child, constantly thinking about ways to help the kid achieve new heights? Well, this is why we’ve made such an effort to provide you with the best possible advice for this.
The main idea you have to keep in mind is that it’s not about money. Although it will surely help your kid if a lot of money is involved, it’s best that you keep the financial aspect out of the scope of work. Let you and your kid’s minds center on what is really important – the thing they are doing. That’s what these young entrepreneurs did, and look where they are:
Mark Bao – Teen Entrepreneur
Mark Bao is the perfect example of how a fruitful early-age business can lead to a better understanding of the world and a further enhanced desire to learn. Bao started out at a very young age by developing a series of apps that were big hits. He had worked his computer programming skills while still in elementary school, and soon he had a hit website.
His first business venture was called threewords.me, where people could describe their friends in three words. Next was Atomplan, a business management tool. His third idea came in the form of an app, Facebook Idol. Something much like American Idol, but designed for the social networking site.
Subsequently, with the money he made, Mark Bao went on a world tour to expand his views on humanity. He now works at Columbia University and is particularly interested in the field of behavioral science. One important piece of advice to remember Bao by: He tells kids to never fear failing in their endeavors. If they do fail, that experience alone will prove invaluable in the future.
Brian Wong – Teen Entrepreneur
Next on our list of teen entrepreneurs is Brian Wong. Brian invented an incredibly successful app called Kiip while on a plane. The young Canadian was looking at people on the plane, and observing how many of them were playing their ad-filled games on their iPads. He thought: Wait a minute! People are giving actual money to these companies by watching their ads. And some apps have so many ads, the value of the app itself must be more than it costs. So where does the extra money go?
So he built Kiip. An app that offers real life rewards based on games and apps achievement systems. So, the next time those people managed to score a big achievement, they would receive a real-life reward. This was not only designed as a great tool for consumers but also for companies. They would subsequently have a far more engaging way to reach their customers.
Nick D’Aloisio – Teen Entrepreneur
One of the brightest business minds on this list of young entrepreneurs, Nick D’Aloisio from London has made it big with his app Summly. A while back, you may have heard it was purchased by Yahoo for the mind-blowing sum of $30 million. As you may imagine, that’s a lot for a kid to handle. But the app is well worth that money.
The app provided an intuitive way to browse the news, by shortening all articles to a basic tweet – 140 characters. And he did this based on an algorithm. The genius of D’Aloisio stands not only in his technical prowess, but also in the way he went about making this app. First, he released a beta version in the form of Trimit. Then, building upon the criticism he received for Trimit, he made Summly into a better, bigger, and more practical version. A good basic policy for any business, wouldn’t you think?
We hope you’ve enjoyed our list of teen entrepreneurs. We hope you’ve been also immensely inspired by it. Do not be deterred by the fact that we did not mention any young female entrepreneurs. There are plenty, like Leanna Archer, Juliette Brindak, or Ashley Qualls, just to name a few.
This list just goes to show that you don’t need to go to Young Entrepreneurs Academy in order to secure a successful business career at a young age. Although I’m sure the people at the YEA know what they’re doing, it’s much more about inspiration and intuition and a good parent to keep creative kids motivated.