Last spring, a neighborhood boy came to our house to sell bread. After he left, my son Clark said, “I want a business.” My wife and I asked him what type of business he would like to have. Clark’s first idea was to sell gummy worms to neighbors. We told Clark it might get difficult selling to the same neighbors as the young man selling bread. I told Clark that he should find something that local businesses would want or need each week. His next ideas were cookies or chocolate. As my wife and Clark continued talking, they came up with the idea of selling fresh flowers to businesses on a weekly basis.
About two weeks later, after doing nothing with the idea, Clark asked us at dinnertime,
“When are we going to start delivering flowers?”
I replied, “We need to start making it happen.”
My wife, a little surprised, said, “Are we really going to do this?”
And I replied, “We can’t have Clark’s first memory of buisness be an idea that he came up with, but never did anything about it.”
We turned to Clark and asked him, “Do you really want to do this?”
“Yes,” he said.
Since Clark is seven, this became a family affair. My wife helped Clark find the vases, and I helped Clark find businesses. We told Clark that he needed to prepare his sales pitch. So he wrote the following:
“Hi, my name is Clark May. I would like to bring you fresh flowers every week. It is $25 per week. Would you like me to bring you flowers?”
Clark was so nervous during his first couple of pitches, he could barely speak or sit still. By his fourth and fifth pitch, he started to look more comfortable. After he had spoken to everyone on my list, Clark, his two younger brothers, and myself would go to a business park and just start knocking on doors. Each time we went knocking, Clark would sell at least one set of flowers, even if it was just for one week.
This flower business has been a really fun experience. It’s been fun for my wife and I to watch Clark grow and become more comfortable and confident in himself. It’s been fun to see this little business break even financially, and then even make a profit. It’s been fun to see the satisfaction on Clark’s face when he spent money that he had earned.My hope is that I can encourage each of my children to pursue their unique interests, so that as they get older, they are not afraid to go after what they want, and they have the skills necessary to accomplish their goals and dreams. #entrepreneurforlife