You see them everywhere. Young people with lemonade stands, delivering papers, or selling candies in the subway (here in NYC). Young entrepreneurs. Some just barely dip their feet in the water (selling Girl Scout cookies, school candies, bake sales for their local church). Others make it a serious enterprise. People like Dylan Siegel who, at 6 years of age, wanted to help cure the disease of his 7-year old friend Jonah Pournazarian, who suffers from Glycogen Storage Disease 1b. His parents told him to host a bake sale or open a lemonade stand. He had other ideas. He decided to write a book, sell copies, and donate the proceeds. Crazy? So far he’s raised over $175,000 and has his sights set on $1,000,000! I personally think he’s going to make it (check out his story). Or take 12-year old Jason O’Neill, creator and owner of Pencil Bugs. He found a way to put fun back into school work and created an industry around it.
These are two examples out of many I can rattle off. Some of them, like the two young men mentioned above, receive national attention. Others go largely unnoticed. Sometimes, others actually try to discourage them. Here at Back-Office Bulletin, we want to celebrate these exceptional young people! So we’ve started our Y.E.S. campaign, and we want your help. Here’s how it works:
- Submit your entry. If you know of a young person who is a budding entrepreneur, let us know by posting a comment here, or on our Young Entrepreneurs Series page (visit the page for more guidelines on submissions). Tell us who they are, what type of business or operation they run (charitable enterprises are also candidates), and how we can get in touch with both them and you.
- Create a post. If we choose your candidate, we’ll reach out to get more details. Then, either you can write a post featuring the young person, or we can help you create an article and give you credit. This way, you’ll get some exposure as well.
- Participate in the reviews. Getting a write-up is great. Having people comment on the article and interact with you is even better! So we want you to reach out to these young people by commenting on the posts, offering encouragement, making suggestions, and yes, even mentioning things you feel can improve (with tact and respect, of course).
This country has its roots in entrepreneurial endeavors. Many other countries are the same. About.com, citing statistics from the U.S. Department of State, says “Fully 99 percent of all independent enterprises in the country employ fewer than 500 people. These small enterprises account for 52 percent of all U.S. workers, according to the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). Some 19.6 million Americans work for companies employing fewer than 20 workers, 18.4 million work for firms employing between 20 and 99 workers, and 14.6 million work for firms with 100 to 499 workers.” Our young entrepreneurs are helping lead that charge. So let’s do what we can to encourage them, helping them see entrepreneurial endeavors are viable career choices!
- Piggybackr Gives Kids a Kickstarter of Their Own (blogs.wsj.com)
- Blake Kernen: What Being A Girl Scout Means To Me (huffingtonpost.com)
- Crowdfunding Isn’t Just for Adults Anymore; PiggyBackr Teaches Youth K through College Successful Crowdfunding Skills (crowdfundingpr.wordpress.com)
- No Jobs? Young Graduates Create Their Own (nytimes.com)
- Where Young Entrepreneurs Meet and Start Up (youngentrepreneur.com)