Wanting to be a young entrepreneur is a wonderful goal! The Kantner Foundation strongly believes in the ability of youth to innovate, disrupt, and change the business world for the better. Entrepreneurship is the engine that moves progress.
But what happens if you have the energy and ambition, but don’t know where to start your entrepreneurial career? You’re happy to put in the time and effort – if only you knew how to find step 1!
An entrepreneurial starter kit can help you orient yourself in the world of business. Some of these kits help ambitious teens without even an idea of what to produce yet. Others will help you take an existing idea and run with it.
The great thing about these kits is that you can live anywhere and use them to jumpstart your entrepreneurial journey. All you need is yourself: your drive, your creativity, and your passion for entrepreneurship.
FOR TEENS WHO ALREADY KNOW WHAT THEY WANT TO DO
From making and selling slime to mowing lawns, the Teen Entrepreneur Toolbox is your best bet for getting started. Creator Anthony ONeal has made a career out of helping teens and college grads manage their money. Here, he guides creative teens through the step-by-step process of the startup business journey, from idea to profit. This kit costs around $30. It includes an 8-step portfolio you can follow, a goal tracker, a list of things to think about and discuss as you start your business, thank-you cards for your customers, a parents’ guide, and access to an app. The kit is designed to answer all your questions and guide you through each challenge you might face.
FOR ENTREPRENEURS WHO PREFER THE ACADEMIC ROUTE
VentureLab exists to empower young entrepreneurs like you through entrepreneurial curricula and lessons. While this program is mostly targeted to teachers and mentors, there’s plenty of free downloads for kid and teen entrepreneurs. For those of you attending a school without business classes or clubs, or if you’re homeschooled, VentureLab is a great program for your parents and teachers to check out.
FOR ALMOST ANY STAGE OF YOUR ENTREPRENEURIAL JOURNEY
The online links at Youth Lead are an invaluable resource for young entrepreneurs no matter where you are on your path to success. Check out the “Creating a Business Plan” link if you’re just starting out. Already moving along and need advice on pitching to investors? They’ve got you covered. The site even includes links for helping you find funding, as well as advice from other successful entrepreneurs. YouthLead is a global organization with 37 projects in the United States alone.
FOR YOUNG ENTREPRENEURS WHO WANT TO HAVE FUN
Who says running a business has to be…all business? While not necessarily a “kit” to get you started, per se, The Entrepreneur Game might still help you learn and develop awesome business skills! This game includes:
- Critical thinking
- More entrepreneurial skills
This means you can learn and develop while playing with friends and family!
FOR ENTREPRENEURS WHO ARE STUCK IN THE IDEA STAGE
You know you’ve got a mind for business and the energy for a marketing blitz. Your dreams of entrepreneurship go well beyond high school and college. You already have an outfit picked out for your Forbes Magazine cover shoot. There’s just one problem: you don’t know yet what your world-changing business is going to be.
Enter the free Rising Innovator business idea generator. Answer a few questions about your disposition, work style, likes, and dislikes, and the generator will tell you what business might be right for you. Then, check out some of our other blog posts for ideas on how to get started in your newly chosen field! We have ideas for:
- Animal lovers
- Environmental warriors
- Graphic designers
- Future doctors
- Working with kids
- Outdoorsy types
FOR YOUNG ENTREPRENEURS IN A HURRY
You’re not looking for anything fancy, you don’t have a ton of time, and you don’t want to spend a lot of money. Young entrepreneurs who just want the basics so they can get started ASAP should check out UDemy’s Entrepreneurial Starter Kit class. Priced at about $15 and less than an hour and a half long, this class contains 12 short lectures you can watch anytime, anywhere. There are also three downloadable resources to take with you when the class is over.
FOR YOUNG ENTREPRENEURS WHO LIKE CHECKLISTS
Head over to Etsy for this printable (and editable in Canva) business startup download by Amy’s Printables Shop. Whether you’re a visual learner or need as much help as possible getting started and staying organized, this set of startup sheets can keep you on track. For less than $7, this kit includes business plan templates, marketing worksheets, product research guides, yearly goals, and more.
FOR REALLY YOUNG ENTREPRENEURS
For the youngest of would-be entrepreneurs comes the Boss Club Kit. These kits are designed for kids aged 7-14, so these make a great gift for a middle school student you’re mentoring or a younger sibling who wants to be just like you! The entrepreneur-to-be can choose from one of five business startup kits: dog treats, bath bombs, cake pops, fudge, and soap. Each kit costs around $50 and includes all materials (ingredients, labels, packaging), a step-by-step curriculum, and a marketing package with coupons.
What these kits all have in common is that they are designed to help anyone and everyone become an entrepreneur. You don’t even need to have a good idea yet! Young entrepreneurs like you know the importance of investing both time and money in yourself. This includes checking out some of the kits listed above. You deserve all the success in the world, and we know you have the drive and energy to get it done!
Find out more about the Kantner Foundation’s commitment to young entrepreneurs, including our college scholarships for high school students, by clicking here.