An entrepreneurial mindset allows us to see things differently; when others see problems, entrepreneurs see opportunities. Abraham Lincoln said, “The most reliable way to predict the future is to create it.”
Raise Children to be Entrepreneurial
Lots of fun, playful, and light-hearted scenarios allow fathers to help children develop “entrepreneurial” approaches to solving problems. The world will always depend on leaders, thinkers, and doers; men and women equipped with self-confidence, resourcefulness, initiative, resilience, and passion. Fathers can and should introduce their kids to people from all walks of life, especially those who exude motivation and inspiration. Benjamin Franklin’s father, Josiah Franklin, frequently hosted visitors with different skills and backgrounds for family dinners—and young Benjamin fared all the better for this exposure.
Keep watch for ways to cultivate a growth mindset. Inspire them to visualize possibilities. Whether we’re home or out and about, look for fun ways to teach things like risk assessment and decision-making. By habitually sharing age-appropriate complexities with children, we can introduce an attentiveness to both conventional and unconventional problem-solving. As their sense of independence grows, they’ll be better equipped to take on new and exciting challenges.
Encouraging children to develop an entrepreneurial mindset does not suggest that they should become entrepreneurs. A real entrepreneurial venture is typically a tremendous amount of work—any path to success is likely to be long and arduous. Especially for children, this can siphon the fun out of the experience. While familiarity with entrepreneurship undeniably empowers children, the right balance of appropriateness and timing can be just as important.
A Father’s Role
Above all, let kids be kids; the rest will fall into place. Within a safe and fun home environment, parents have eighteen years to prepare children for adulthood. Teach them to balance leadership with service, boldness with wisdom. When the time comes for them to take the lead in their own lives, should we not aspire for them to choose their path? If they choose entrepreneurship, the time we’ve invested with them can offer us the confidence that they will be as prepared as possible.
Balancing Entrepreneurship with Fatherhood
Successful entrepreneurs put their hearts and souls into their work. Successful fathers are committed to being the best dad they can be. How can we do both? By establishing self-imposed standards, we can and must hold ourselves accountable for maintaining a healthy balance between entrepreneurship and fatherhood. Sometimes, this might mean the kids are going to work with dad for the day. Make it fun, bring books and other things to keep them entertained, and teach them a few things during the process.
With high professional standards, we can build and maintain a successful business. Imagine the travesty of managing the best company in the industry while delivering a C performance as a dad. If we can set aside time for our most important client, we can always make time for our children. Kids spell love T-I-M-E.
Smart entrepreneurs constantly preach “Systems, Systems, Systems,” as they turn their businesses into well-oiled machines. Oftentimes, especially during the early stages of an entrepreneurial venture, founders work long hours as they sacrifice for their professional dreams. Consider the truth of, “It Takes a Village to Raise a Child.” If we have chosen to prioritize our profession in hopes of a better financial future, it is that much more important to choose our village wisely, ensuring that the values of the villagers align with the values we aspire for our children. If we rely on family and friends to do much of the heavy lifting while we work, we must leave our kids in the hands of the most capable and best possible caregivers.
Education in Entrepreneurship
According to US News & World, Babson College has the #1 Entrepreneurship Undergraduate and #1 Entrepreneurship MBA programs in the world. Babson has trademarked Entrepreneurial Thought & Action® (ET&A™), a proven methodology for developing the skill set and mindset needed to not just launch a new business, but also make change in an established company, lead a team, or create social impact. It allows leaders to effectively navigate uncertainty by continuously taking action to move forward.
While entrepreneurship isn’t for everyone, an entrepreneurial mindset offers the breadth and depth of multiple perspectives, allowing us to better visualize possibilities. By engaging our children in thought-provoking conversations and sharing diverse life experiences, we encourage habits of free-thought, independence, and creativity. With an entrepreneurial mentality, our children can learn new ways of seeing the world. With entrepreneurship, they can change it.
“And thou say in thine heart, My power and the might of mine hand hath gotten me this wealth. But thou shalt remember the Lord thy God: for it is he that giveth thee power to get wealth, that he may establish his covenant which he sware unto thy fathers, as it is this day.” —Deuteronomy 8:17-18 KJV
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PLEASE NOTE: As an Amazon Associate, Fathers Truly Matter earns from qualifying purchases. The information in this post should not be construed as providing specific psychiatric, psychological, or medical advice, but rather to offer readers information to better understand the lives and health of themselves and their children. It is not intended to provide an alternative to professional treatment or to replace the services of a physician, psychiatrist, or psychotherapist.