In this episode, Mak & G talk about how to start a company, different business ideas for kids, and how to make your company stand out.
Every company starts with a good idea, but once you’ve got that idea how do you go about starting a company?
In this episode, Mak & G talk about how to start a company, how to find out if your idea will be successful, and even talk through some different business ideas that kids can start…
“A service is when you do something for another person, like cutting the neighbor’s lawn. A product is a physical item you make in order to sell it, like lemonade.” – G
00:30 – How to start a company.
00:42 – How supply and demand works.
00:56 – The difference between a service and a product.
01:16 – How to find out if something is in demand.
02:05 – What competitors are.
02:42 – How to make your company stand out.
03:42 – Ideas for businesses that kids can start.
05:58 – What to consider when starting a company.
Connect with Ben Jones:
MAK: Alright G, we really do need to make more money.
GRANT: Ya, I agree. What are you thinking?
MAK: Well, what about creating a company that makes a profit?
GRANT: Ya, let’s do it! Hey Dad! How do you create a company?
DAD: That’s a great question G. Starting a company requires some careful planning, but if you put in the time and do a little research, you can get your new company off to a great start. Ok kids, the first thing you need to understand is how supply and demand works. To have a successful company, and make a profit, you need to ensure you’re offering a product or service people are willing to pay for. First, do you remember the difference between a service and a product?
GRANT: Oh! Oh! I know this! A service is when you do something for another person, like cutting the neighbor’s lawn, and a product is a physical item you make in order to sell it, like lemonade.
DAD: That’s right! The service or product is what you are supplying to your customers, but just offering a service or product isn’t enough. You need to determine if there is any need for it. This is known as “demand”.
MAK: Wait, how do we find out if what we want to supply is in ‘demand’?
DAD: Well, sometimes the answer is pretty easy to come by if you think about when and why a product or service is needed. For example, lawn mowing services is a service in demand during the summer when the weather is warm and grass grows quickly, but once the winter hits, it snows…
GRANT: The grass doesn’t grow, so there’s no demand for lawn mowing.
DAD: Nailed it. No demand means no sales, which means no profit…
GRANT: Which means no new toys!
MAK: Right… So, if we want to make money, we need to choose a product or service people actually want or need at the time we are offering it.
DAD: Exactly, another factor you need to consider is if your company has any competitors. Competitors are other companies that offer products or services similar to yours.
GRANT: You mean like how there are two bakeries in town?
DAD: That’s a great example G-man. The bakeries offer similar products, so in order to ‘win’, they find ways to make their own products more desirable and different. Like – Mak, you love Busy Bee Bakery because you think their Triple Chocolate cake is the best.
MAK: Ya! Ok, but how do we make our own company stand out?
DAD: Well, that can be done in a variety of ways it just depends on what company you want to start. Some companies provide their product or service at a lower cost while others compete by creating products with higher quality materials or by providing something unique that their competitor doesn’t offer.
GRANT: So one might make donuts, which are cheap, and the other could make cakes for special occasions?
DAD: Exactly, that way each bakery provides for different customer needs. Another method is to create an enjoyable experience that customers won’t forget.
GRANT: Like going to Disney World and meeting Mickey Mouse at dinner!
MAK: Is food all you think about G?
GRANT: I’m really hungry.
DAD: That was scary. Sounds like it’s time for lunch kids. How about you take a break and see how many company ideas you can come up with.
DAD: So what ideas do you two have?
GRANT: Well, we were thinking about the lawn mowing example. Since it’s summer, we could make some money doing that.
MAK: Then in the winter we could shovel driveways and sidewalks, so we can keep our customers.
GRANT: But both of those sound like really hard work, and I don’t want to be out in the cold for that long.
DAD: Well, if you’re not very enthusiastic about that idea, let’s put it to the side for now and consider some of your other options.
MAK: We could do a lemonade and baked goods stand. I’m great at making brownies.
GRANT: You’d probably eat the profits. And besides, there are already two bakeries in town. I’m not sure we’d make a lot of money.
MAK: Yeah, well plus not many people walk down our street either.
DAD: So it sounds like there isn’t much demand for a lemonade and baked goods stand in this location. One way you could remedy that is by bringing your business to the customers where they need it. For instance you could try setting up a stand somewhere with more foot traffic, such as near a frequently used basketball court or a busy neighborhood.
GRANT: A lot of people do visit the park this time of year…
MAK: Oh, and there’s always people swimming near the lake!
DAD: Great ideas! Many people are willing to pay for convenience. By bringing your stand to these busy areas, you save your customers a trip and extend the time they can enjoy the great outdoors.
GRANT: But what would we do when it gets cold? I don’t want to wait all winter long before I can make money again.
MAK: That’s true. I’d rather be swimming on a hot day anyways, not selling lemonade.
GRANT: Yeah, and I don’t really like baking.
DAD: Sounds like you kids really want to create a company that keeps you busy all year round. Maybe think about what kind of work you already enjoy doing.
MAK: Well, we’re really good at taking care of our dog Oreo .
GRANT: Maybe we could do the same for other people?
MAK: Yeah, let’s start a pet sitting service!
DAD: Now you’re on to something!!!
Ben 2 cents:
Here’s a couple of things to remember when you start thinking about a business:
Consider a variety of options and really consider what kind of job best suits you.
○ Interest- Is it work you enjoy doing or will it help you gain skills, knowledge, or experience necessary to work a job you hope to have in the future?
○ Time constraints: do you have the free time to commit to the type of work you’re talking about?
○ Transportation requirements: does the work require travel and do you have the ability to get to and from the location?
○ Start up costs- can you afford the start up costs necessary to begin providing services or making products?
○ Personal health- will the work cause an unhealthy level of stress or physically too difficult?
Remember that there is no one right way to make your company competitive.
○ The important thing is finding a strategy, also called a plan, that represents your company’s best features.
○ Consider what customers’ value most about your company and how you can make their experiences easier, cost-efficient, or special.
○ And of course, build a relationship with your customers whenever possible. Adding that personal touch goes a long way in helping your customers feel valued. This means more repeat customers and more recommendations.
Well, that’s it for now! Stay tuned just a minute longer for a preview of next week’s episode…