What do crazy teachers & scoliosis have to do with slapping your friend in the head?

May 27th, 2013 Submitted by Geof White

Ahhhh…high school. The great American institution where teens learn the basics of education. For some students high school can be a launching pad for college, while for others it’s the end of their formal education. Regardless of which path you take after graduation, there are four things that every high school has:      cafeteria blog

  1. There is the CAFETERIA, where yes, some greasy food is eaten and the occasional brown paper bag appears, but really the cafeteria should be renamed the “social hub” because we all know there is so much gossip and weekend planning flying around that Jerry Springer would be jealous.

  2. There is the GYMNASIUM where students are required to try sports they may not have  had the opportunity to try. You know, the sports that you never wanted to try in the first place. But it’s all good because at least you are getting that 40 minutes of psuedo-exercise on a Wednesday morning.

  3. There is the CRAZY TEACHER. You know, the one that dresses all funky, tries to be “cool” around the students and has that crazy look in her eyes. Don’t worry, of all the great teachers you have had over the years, this one will be the one you remember.

  4. There are the TEXTBOOKS, you know that 65 pounds of scoliosis you lug around to class each day. Each textbook is filled with useful information conveyed in the most dry, unexciting, nap-inducing way. Even the trees they used to make these books are unimpressed.  

 

I wish you luck with surviving the first three as I cannot help you with those. The fourth however I may be able to offer you an assist. I wrote Lemonade Stand Economics: A Refreshing Way to Pay for College to help high school students earn significantly more than minimum wage and pay for college without the help of student loans. Lemonade Stand Economics IS NOT A TEXTBOOK.

 

Lemonade Stand Economics is a series of real stories with relevant advice that will change the way you earn and spend. Are you okay with earning 3 or 4 times what your buddy is earning slapping sandwiches together? This book tells you how to do just that.  No happy “you can do it” horse crap, just real advice on how to earn money working for yourself as a high school student.  The financial literacy standards you’ve all come to love are in there, but you’d never know it. You will be too busy working and making money.   

So don’t put Lemonade Stand Economics in your scoliosis backpack! It doesn’t belong there! Carry Lemonade Stand Economics in your free hand…and feel free to slap your best friend in the back of the head with it once you enter the chaos of the cafeteria. It’s only 160 pages so it’s way shorter than any one of your boring textbooks. Heck, it isn’t even heavy enough to give a concussion. Now quit reading blogs and get back to class!

 

 

The most important job you will ever have

May 17th, 2013 Submitted by Geof White

Yea right – like your stupid minimum wage summer job is going to be the most important job you ever had. Right! Call me crazy — but I said it. And I mean it. The job you have this summer may very well be the most important job you ever have in your life! Just hear me out.

 

16525223_sThe summer after my freshman year in high school (I was 15), I took a summer job cleaning windows. My mom was friends with a friend of one of the owners. It was offered to me and I took it. I made minimum wage – a whopping $3.35 an hour – $135 a week before taxes. The money was nothing special – it was spending money for a teenager – but I did learn how to clean windows. So what? Unless I was going to clean windows for the rest of my life, this was just another summer job. At the age of 15 I had no idea what my future held. I knew that I wanted to go to college. I think I wanted to be an architect and like most 15 year olds, my life was consumed with music, sports, friends, girls, and whatever was shiny that day.

 

I would begrudgingly get up in the morning, get to work 1 minute before I was supposed to be there and fill up my bucket. The boss would hand out clipboards in crews of two and we were off to clean some glass. I always liked the summer mornings, the days always started off cool then by noon it was hot. I had an amazing tan, I mean I was working out in the sun all day- you can’t beat that! I was outside, I was moving from window to window, job site to job site. Window cleaning wasn’t the hardest “labor” job out there. There is definitely a skill to it, a precision actually, but its not nearly as physically taxing as roofing or hanging drywall. I would clean windows all day, go home afterward and do what every 15 year old does in the summer after work. Hang out with friends, play frisbee and try to get girls to notice my amazing tan. Sounds like the most important job I have ever had in my life, right??    

 

In the course of those days cleaning glass that summer I learned a lot…but I didn’t realize it at the time. Call it oblivion, call it being 15, call it what you want, but I learned a ton. Learning a skill (like window cleaning) that you can use for the rest of your life is NEVER a bad thing. I learned that showing up to work on time is more than important. I witnessed what the boss went through when guys showed up late and screwed up the day. I worked with guys who had to support a family on that same $3.35 an hour. From that I learned that I never ever wanted to work for minimum wage or anything close to it again.

 

Every job site had a customer. Learning how to treat those customers is a crucial aspect of any business, regardless of what it is. I learned that many people have a crappy work ethic. On the other hand many people have a fantastic work ethic. I also saw that benefits and satisfaction that comes from working hard. There were times I hated cleaning windows, hated a labor job, and hated the guys I worked with. Yet on other days I really enjoyed cleaning windows, getting to move around and exercise all day and some of those guys were really great guys and I’m a better person for knowing them. I also learned how something as simple as being in a bad mood can swing that perspective like a pendulum. I learned at least 100 other things at that summer job… but you get the point.

 

So why would I say that my summer job making $3.35 and hour cleaning windows when I was 15 is the most important job I ever had? Because it was. Today all of my income hinges on that one summer job. I never would have predicted it back then but now I own a window cleaning company. I don’t clean glass all day now, but I do enjoy the cool summer mornings as I hand out the clipboards. After they are handed out I write. I could have never written Lemonade Stand Economics without that summer job leading to me working for myself as a teenager earning far more than minimum wage and paying for college on my own.

So when you take that summer job this year, pay attention. It may be the most important job you will ever have in your life.

A blizzard of distractions… in the spring

May 9th, 2013 Submitted by Geof White

Any of you that live in the north (…or the midwest…or the central states…or out east…pretty much anywhere except Texas, Florida and California actually…), have driven in a snowstorm. You know “The One.” The One you remember. The One that causes you to white knuckle at 10 miles an hour because you can’t see 5 feet in front of you. You are all hunched forward, tense, squinting and all you can see is white specks flying at you. You get to where you are going…eventually. I once drove from Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan to Marquette, Michigan in such a storm. A 3 hour trip took 5. And I was towing a boat for some reason, but that is another story…

My work day today was like that snowstorm. A blizzard of distractions. I went into this nice spring  day knowing I had a lot to do… but getting it done efficiently was not in the cards. I caused distractions. Other people caused distractions. The nice weather was a distraction.  “Nothing” caused distractions. My susceptibility to distractions was extremely high and the world seemed to be more than happy to take advantage of that fact. It was a Monday after a nice weekend of being outside and my head was all rubbery. So everything – and nothing – distracted me. Everyone has days like this. Especially for high school students this time of year …with sports, final exams, prom, graduation and the quest for a summer job looming in the not so distant future.

If a blizzard of distractions is keeping you from getting done what you need to get done, then give this a try. blog graphic 2 

  1. Get away from everyone. Change the scenery. People are very distracty. (Look that up in your Geof-tionary). Find that corner of your house or office where no one is or will be for a while and get something done.   

  2. Put on the headphones. Block out the world with some good tunes and concentration. When I write I listen to the Allman Brothers, but you make your own choice.

  3. Don’t check Facebook or LinkedIn or Twitter or Youtube or Google+ or any form of communication that is instantaneous. You don’t need to see a kitten or inspirational quote right now. You just need to get some work done. Go ahead and go through your emails,  but none of the others.

  4. Keep hydrated.  Mental or physical, work is work. Keep a bottle of water with you. Not a Monster. Or a latte’ or a monster-sized latte’. Water. Plain, pure water.     

  5. Concentrate on one thing at time.  I know, Mr. Multitasker is saying to stick to one thing at a time. It is true. You will get more done by doing one thing at a time very well instead of doing several things at the same time. This is especially true on Days of High Distraction.

After my blizzard this morning, I ate lunch and got back to work. I shut my door and turned on the tunes, didn’t check anything on my computer, sipped my bottle of water and concentrated on working. The windshield became clear. I worked as I traveled in peace with the the Allman Brothers and enjoyed the ride. No more blizzard. No more distractions. I got tons of work done. I killed it on this nice spring Monday afternoon.

The butterfly effect and “lemon”osity

April 21st, 2013 Submitted by Geof White

There is no time in your life more important than your teen years. From 13-19 it seems like every little decision you make potentially has a huge impact on how you live your life as an adult. Screw off in school and the next thing you know you are flipping burgers at 42. Study hard for every exam and become president of the company by 35. Smoke that first cigarette and die of lung cancer at 60. Because before you know it, you will be 42…or 35…or 60.

New Bitmap ImageI will share my experience as a teenager that had a huge impact on every day of the rest of my life. My work ethic – every day – is a direct result of the influences I had as a teenager. My mom worked hard, sometimes at crappy jobs. I saw her effort and it stuck with me. I worked for a couple window cleaners that knew no other way than to hard work every day. They taught me how to work hard and the benefits you get from it. But there is another part to work ethic. The part that makes the butterfly effect positive. All of my influences taught me that work can be enjoyable. It’s okay to enjoy the work you do. Even if it isn’t exactly what you want to be doing right at that second…or forever… you can find a way to make it enjoyable. See, when you enjoy what you are doing it doesn’t seem like work. However, if you hate what you are doing, well, it will seem like work all right. In the worst way.

As a teenager the decisions you make today will have an effect on your confidence in the future. It might affect how rich or how poor you are. How well you live, or how well you wish you lived. How stressed you are, or how relaxed you are. How you define success or what you value. How you treat other people or how they treat you.

But here’s the trick. You don’t always (or ever) know what or who will be impacted tomorrow by your decisions today. It’s been said – by everyone from Aristotle to Walt Disney according to brainyquotes.com and pinterest boards – “We are what we repeatedly do. Therefore, excellence is not an act. It is a habit.”

So maybe it’s not every little decision that needs to be agonized over, but rather working hard to consistently do the right thing. The smart thing. To consistently work hard and consistently have a good attitude toward work and life and other people. Be consistent with excellence. Be relentless with enjoying work and persevere with “lemon”osity.

 

You spend wisely…Are you earning wisely?

April 8th, 2013 Submitted by Geof White

There seems to be a “day” for everything. National Waffle Day is March 25. National Tweed Day is March 18. Something On a Stick Day is March 25. Every day is “National Whatever Day.” In addition to the goofy “day” celebrations we have “month” celebrations that are quite a bit more important. Black History Month, Autism Awareness Month, Breast Cancer Prevention Month. This month, April, is Financial Literacy Month. A topic I feel is worthy of a month. I will be honest though, when I hear that a month is designated a certain recognition month I always think “Okay, yeah. That is important.”  And that is where it ends. I don’t do anything different. I acknowledge the importance of the name and away I go with my day.

 

So, Financial Literacy Month. I bet you get some of that at school. Maybe you have to take a Personal Finance Management class. “Be responsible with credit cards. Don’t spend more than you have. Balance your checkbook…blah blah blah.”  All important concepts, but I hear you thinking, “Just shut up already! I’m not stupid. I know all of this. Once I actually HAVE any money, I’ll make good decisions, so you can let some other public issue have this month.”  While I agree with you there is another side to financial literacy that no one seems to talk about. Earning money. You’ve been told how to save and spend wisely…to follow a budget and balance a checkbook, but are you earning wisely? Are you earning as much as you can every hour you work?

 

Are you earning $7.50 per hour or $15 per hour? Are you working for minimum wage or maximum wage? The kid making $15 an hour only works half the time to earn the same amount as someone being paid minimum wage. Someone earning $25/hour works roughly 1/3 of the time as someone working minimum wage FOR THE SAME AMOUNT OF MONEY. Who are you going to be? What are you going to be – minimum you or maximum you?

Earning is so important, yet much harder to talk about. It’s easy to talk cutting expenses. Don’t drink the latte, don’t eat out, buy your books for a discount. Now talk about earning more money.  How do I make more? Who pays that much? How am I going to do it? Where do I start? Not so easy is it?

 

I know students who kick ass in this department. They work for themselves and we call them student business owners. They are doing what they want to do to earn money. No punching in or doing what the boss tells you. Because they are their own boss! These students are successful because they spend wisely AND earn maximum wage. These students have figured out how to consistently earn more. Some of these students earn $25 or even $50 for every hour of work.   

I ask you to do one thing during Financial Literacy Month. Just one thing.  

Now that you know it’s Financial Literacy Month, please don’t just go on with your day. Use Financial Literacy Month to motivate you to find a job – or better yet – MAKE A JOB that earns double what you make now. Yes, double! Find a way to earn maximum wage. You will need to think differently. You will need to be persistent. You can do it and when you do, you will thank me because you be working half as much as you were before and still have the same stack of cash.

 

One simple equation     

Earn more = Work less    

It’s Lemonade Stand Economics

Happy Financial Literacy Month

hire yourself 

 

 

Effort is the great equalizer

March 24th, 2013 Submitted by Geof White

At this year’s DECA state competition (www.DECA.org), Lemonade Stand Economics led several breakout sessions teaching students how to juggle with lemons. Well, first we watched a video about a shirtless guy dancing and discussed the importance of leadership and being the first follower. ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fW8amMCVAJQ ) Then we juggled. Students have a lot going on in their lives with classes, homework, sports, friends, parents, siblings, a job, and for these particular students…DECA. Students today have a lot of balls…or should I say lemons… in the air. Our breakout session brought attention to the fact that managing all of this is literally juggling, and the better the juggler you are the smoother everything goes. It was also some fun and levity for these students that were pretty serious about competing the next day and really feeling the pressure.157052_512144798824539_508805066_n

In the first session, there was a girl in the front row who learned to juggle in ten minutes. I was there- I saw it. She was right in front of me. When we started – she could not juggle. She started with one lemon, then two, then three. Ten minutes later she could juggle three lemons consistently for two or three minutes. She picked it up that fast. She was a natural. I’d say everyone is a natural at something and hers was obviously juggling. Was it hand/eye coordination? Her friends encouraging her? I’m not sure, but she was very good, very quickly.

Later that day we were with another group of students. One young lady wanted to juggle in a bad way. She was not going to stop until she could juggle those three lemons. At her ten minute point, we were all ducking because she was chucking lemons around the room. She kept saying, “I’m going to get this. I’m going to do this,” more to herself than to us or the other students. She was progressing, getting better each time she tossed the lemons up and she had friends there encouraging her too. And laughing…boy, did they have a good time. It did not come as naturally to her. But she did it. Nearly 60 minutes in, we were all cheering when she kept those three lemons up for two minutes. She had learned to juggle! And she was loving it! And she was beaming with pride as they left.

Both ladies accomplished the juggling challenge set before them. One took ten minutes and one took an hour. Both had fun. Both had friends on the sidelines telling them they could do it. One got it very easily and one had to work harder, but in the end they both walked away jugglers.  The difference in how they got there was effort. The first girl had to use little effort. She literally picked up the lemons and juggled them. Once she got it, she started helping her friends get it too. The second girl exerted much more effort to achieve this lemony juggling pinnacle. She simply would not give up. Lots of kids quit before the third lemon, but she would not let it beat her.

Effort is the great equalizer. Anyone can pretty much accomplish anything with enough effort. I look back at my own personal shortcomings in life and most of them were because of the lack of effort on my part. I stopped before my third lemon.

Don’t be afraid to put in the effort. If something does come naturally to you, be grateful and move toward the next challenge.  I’m glad these two girls – and the hundreds of other students – learned how to juggle and I’m glad we were there to watch it, but I’m also grateful they had fun. That’s important too.

Everyone has a million dollar idea

March 15th, 2013 Submitted by Geof White

Some say that every person has a million dollar idea at some point in their life. You know, that brilliant idea that can change the world. Maybe your idea is something simple or a new way of doing something that won’t change the world, but will still put a million dollars in your pocket.  Often this idea comes to you at the most inopportune time (you are super busy, you have no money, you have a huge project at work), yet it’s there, right in your head. I’d even venture to say that some people have had several million dollar ideas in their lifetime. So why doesn’t anyone take that brilliant idea and make a million dollars?  Well, some do. But most don’t. Maybe this is why…
million dollar idea
1) People don’t recognize how realistic their idea is. Everybody can’t know everything.  Sometimes people just don’t realize the magnitude of their idea. They just don’t see it. It’s easy to have an idea and think someone else already had it.

2) People get caught up in the minutia of everyday life. You have your million dollar idea-  then someone texts you and you are late for work and you forgot your uniform and you need get gas just to get to work. Yup, brilliant idea-gone!

3) People are not willing to put in the time.  Who has extra time in their life? I don’t. Bye bye brilliant idea, I can’t fit you in today.

4) People don’t know where to start or what to do.  I have this brilliant idea. Now what?  What should I do? What should I do first? Will this work? Is this such a brilliant idea? Never mind.

5) People are too scared to take a risk. I don’t know if I can do it. I will try, but if I fail I will have wasted all this time and effort. And people will laugh at me. Fear often wins the battle of the brilliant idea.

6) People have a daily routine.  Everyone has a daily routine. Often that brilliant idea doesn’t fit into the routine. So it’s quick to pass.

So before YOU end up being the guy who watches late night tv and sees a commercial for the brilliant idea that YOU came up with years ago…do something about it! Don’t sit on it.Take action. Move toward making your idea happen. If your idea is truly a million dollar idea then treat it like one. Get off your ass, start educating yourself, get to work and earn that million dollars! It’s not the idea that makes the money… its the person that makes the idea come to life.

Be THAT person

Parents- Are you doing your children a disservice?

March 5th, 2013 Submitted by Geof White

Parents: This blog is for you (believe me kids, you don’t want to read it!)

Remember the days when your kids were little? When they relied on you for everything? You fed them. You cleaned up after them. You made sure they were happy and experienced all the good things in life. Every parent wants to raise a good kid and see that child flourish into a good adult.  It’s a huge responsibility if you think about it. After all, you as a parent (either by your action – or your inaction) are the single biggest influence in your child’s life.Jack

Little by little we give our children more responsibility. We give them opportunities to prove that they can do things on their own. Remember teaching your child to walk? I do. We got on our knees and I held my son’s hand as he stood with stiff legs. I let go of his hand and he took an awkward step toward mom…and fell over. I picked him up and we did it again. Words of encouragement and excitement echoed through the living room. This time he took two steps before hitting the floor again. Was this stumbling seen as failure? No, of course not…WE realized that stumbling and falling was how he learned.  I knew he would eventually get it… and like every other kid, he did.

We encourage our kids to clean up their toys and put things away. We purposefully don’t do everything for our children so they can learn on their own. It fosters independence and responsibility all the while they do these tasks with a huge smile on their face. The sense of pride is found early with children. Kids love to be independent and show their parents that they can do it all by themselves. My oldest son Jack used to say “Jack do it, Jack do it,” as he tried to impress me with whatever goofy thing he was doing his own goofy way.

As your child becomes a teenager the thrill and pride of doing things on their own passes into everyday function. All of a sudden your teenager is more or less self sufficient doing things like cooking, driving and completing math homework that look like Chinese to you. Some days things go smoothly and he aces the test, other days he falls down a few times before he gets it.  All those independent moments of responsibility as a child have gradually influenced this tall awkward sometimes sweet, yet often crabby, teen into a young adult you can’t help but be proud of. Which brings me to my question…

Are we doing our children a disservice by paying for their college education?

If we were such good parents making sure our children learn to do things on their own then why do we abandon that theory when it’s time for college? Because they deserve it? Because we are tired of finding creative ways to get them to learn on their own? Do we owe our children a college education? If you are the parent that can’t afford your kid’s college education or choose not to pay a dime, then this point is moot. Or is it? Maybe you are simply teaching your teen a lesson of a lifetime.

Why would I say that?  Let me give you the most unscientific answer possible. Of all the people I know, the most successful ones put themselves through college. I have nothing against college grads who did not pay their own way… but again, the most successful people I know had to find a way to pay for college themselves. Some paid for college with an academic scholarship in which you need to maintain a certain grade point and credit level. Some, like myself, worked our asses off hour after hour to pay for it. Some lived in their Mom’s basement. Some took a few years off and ate ramen noodles every day to save up and then went to school. All of these  students experienced struggle and the pride that accompanies it. These students had to plan, save, work hard and sacrifice to pay for their college education. Regardless of HOW they did it, they figured out a way to pay for college without help… to which I have the utmost admiration. They might have had some verbal encouragement in the living room… but those students learned to walk into adulthood without anyone holding their hand and they are better for it.

So parents- Maybe you should quit worrying how you are going to pay for your kid’s college education and start guiding them as to how they can pay for it themselves. I have said many times that the education I received by struggling to pay for college was as much or more valuable to me than the lessons I learned in the classroom. Don’t deprive your student of the chance to beam with pride as they do it themselves. Just like when they learned to walk. The first few steps are wobbly… then the next thing you know they are running full speed with a smile on their face and not looking back.

Parenting didn’t end when they lost the diaper. Parenting didn’t end when they got the braces.  And parenting is not going to end when college approaches. Parenting never ends…and personally, I’m okay with that.

Flip your switch – no matter where you are standing

February 24th, 2013 Submitted by Geof White

I was a freshman in high school when I took a summer job cleaning windows at Rochester Window Cleaning for $3.35/hour. It was minimum wage and I was high school kid. To be honest, cleaning windows was kinda fun. I got to work outside a lot. Cleaning windows means that you are moving around all day…keeping in shape…nice. By the end of that first summer I was one darn good window cleaner with a killer tan. My sophomore summer I went back to RWC to clean some more windows. But this year, things would be different.

One day that summer, I was cleaning windows in the mayor of Rochester’s office. In fact, I was standing on the mayor’s chair cleaning the big window behind his desk. While I was cleaning, his secretary peeked her head around the corner and asked, “Do you clean house windows on the side?”  I said, in a very unsure teenage tone, “Sure.”  But honestly, I had never thought of that. I could clean windows on my own?  She gave me her address and I went out there after work and looked at her house. This was the point I realized that I had absolutely no idea how to price a job.  So…I guessed.  $60??  I’m sure it sounded more of a question than a statement. She agreed to the price, and said “Let’s do this next Saturday.” As I walked away I realized that I didn’t have any tools of my own so I bought some tools from the local janitorial supply store and entered the great unknown of cleaning windows for myself.

As agreed, I cleaned her windows the following Saturday. When I was done, she paid me with three fresh twenty dollar bills. I remember looking down at them and doing some quick math. I had worked three hours. That’s $20/hour. $20 PER HOUR!!!!  It took me half a week to make $60 cleaning windows at $3.35 /hour. I had just given myself a $17/hour raise!

I remember driving away and all I could do was think about the fact that I just made $60 in three hours. It was so easy! I wanted to do it again!  My mind has never worked the same after that. I had flipped the entrepreneur switch in my brain. The realization that I could make $20/hour instead of $3.35/hour was just mind blowing. That was a life-changing moment for me. All I had to do now was find more homeowners that wanted me to clean their windows…and my first business was born!6486047_s

What does standing in the mayor’s chair have to do with Lemonade Stand Economics? My business in high school was literally launched when I was standing in the mayor’s chair. A unique story and 100% truth. In Lemonade Stand Economics, I use that story as a “this could be you” situation to show high school students that opportunities can happen anywhere, at any time…even standing in the mayor’s chair. (Which I really wasn’t supposed to be doing in the first place.) 

Why high school & college are ideal times to start your business

February 21st, 2013 Submitted by Geof White

Robert

I have talked to many high school and college entrepreneurs who have already started their own business. Several of them mentioned that they wish they would have started their business earlier. Every time I hear that answer, my question is always, “Why?”  Sometimes these students are already working for themselves at 16 or 17…or 10…and they wish they’d have started earlier? It surprises me. Or it used to.

One student told me “Because having a business is so much fun – I wish I had started earlier instead of wasting my time at that awful job.” Another student told me that he would be “making even more money now if he had started earlier.”  Yet another student said, “You have so many more resources available to you as a student. People want to help you. Lots of them. For free!”   All valid points that bring me to my big question.

Why do students think they have to wait until AFTER college to work for themselves?

Is it because you will have so much more knowledge having already graduated? Is it because you won’t have to worry about classes anymore and you can concentrate on your business? Is it because of the fear of the unknown? Maybe you are too busy and you don’t have time when you are in college? Or is it because you think you are supposed to wait until college is over to work for yourself and enter The Real World?

To me, I don’t see any reason to wait to start your business. Maybe I’m biased because I started my first real business at age 17. I see it this way: If a student has a great idea to make money now why not pursue it – now?  Why not start making it happen RIGHT NOW? Who says you can’t go to class and have a business? I know many students who are doing it – and doing it well. They have figured out that high school and college are ideal times to start a business and here are a few reasons why…

1) Age advantage. While you may not be the most worldly soul as a student, you do have youth on your side. Ask any adult, they will surely agree. You have more energy. You have more fresh ideas. You have more optimism. You have more free time. You have more energy (I said that twice for a reason!)

2) Access to mentors. Whether in high school or college you have access to a great pool of mentors – your teachers. I am willing to bet if you went to your accounting teacher and said, “I am starting a business would you advise me?” They would gladly help you. Same for your business, marketing or economics teacher. Part of the reason they became teachers was to help students, especially a student that has a plan to do something great.

3) Ideas fade.  If you have a good business idea now then act on it. If you don’t act on it that idea will fade. The minutia of everyday life will fade it. Other good ideas will come and cause it to fade.  Doubts will make it fade. Exams and roommate disagreements and video games will make it fade. That good business idea will end up being “that one idea” said in the past tense when you are older looking back on your life.

4) Now beats later. Whatever reason you have for not starting now, will inevitably stop you later too. If you let the reasons to do it later make the decision for you now, you will get used to waiting until later, which many times turns to never. The next thing you know you never started your business and all you can do is wonder what it would have been like. Would it have worked? How much money could I have made? Who would I have met? Would I still be doing that now?

5) There is no ideal time to start. Really, when is the best time to start a business? Is there a better time than another? Is there ever a perfect time?  So if there is no perfect time… then why not NOW?? I’ve heard it said this way, “If you want to, you will find a way. If you don’t want to, you’ll find an excuse.”

Every business is started with a good idea, some effort and willingness to push back that little fear of the unknown. It has nothing to do with age. It has nothing to do with your grade point average or what year you are in school. If you are considering starting a business as a student I say, “There is no time like now!”

Join us for “What to do with your great idea”
If you already have a business idea or want to be prepared for when you do, please join me for the presentation, “So you have a great idea – Now what?”  sponsored by the  UW-Oshkosh College Entrepreneurship Organization. I will be speaking on how to get started making money with your idea NOW so you can avoid student loans.