As a former-K-12-teacher-turned-business-school-professor, I’m excited to offer parents a few ideas on how they can integrate the entrepreneurial mindset to enable their children to think in less conventional ways.

An entrepreneurial mindset orients people toward recognizing opportunities, innovating and quickly adapting to change, which all facilitates entrepreneurial discovery and behaviors. Formal coursework is not requisite to develop an entrepreneurial mindset; and kids are at an advantage given they do not always see barriers conditioned into most adults.

Here are four ways every parent can incorporate an entrepreneurial mindset. Parents who are able to integrate these concepts and the entrepreneurial mindset will challenge their children in powerful ways.

1. Understand your environment

Adapting is the ability to cope with change and even thrive in the face of it. For instance, parents often create valuable structure for children through routines. Yet routines and plans often go awry. Parents can use this as a teaching moment and lead by example by keeping a positive attitude during unexpected changes.

Demonstrating how children can accept disruption as a challenge rather than a roadblock helps promote the entrepreneurial mindset. Children can also be encouraged to understand that realized plans are often a combination of deliberate planning and emerging adjustments.

2. Design a plan

Innovating is the creative process of building or amending something new (e.g., products, services or processes). Parents can promote ideation and creativity in their children in many ways.

For example, on some occasions parents may allow time for creating or designing art, music or learning to code as an option for children in place of more traditional chores.

3. Seize the day

Recognizing opportunities is the ability to take advantage of and capitalize on market conditions that are not obvious to others. This is one of the most important elements of the entrepreneurship mindset. Parents can put this into action by discussing how everyday products or services came to be successful (e.g., food trucks).

Parents can also demand schools incorporate opportunity recognition into their curricula. For example, many STEM programs spend time explaining how inventors recognized gaps in the market and how various breakthroughs have been patented and commercialized.

4. Go the distance

Stick-with-it-ness is simple yet challenging. Parents can greatly help and motivate their children to stick with and finish extracurricular activities, schoolwork, chores, etc.

It is imperative that children build confidence in their ability to complete their goals as part of the entrepreneurial mindset. Parents can recognize progress and milestones, apply age-old sayings such as “When the going gets tough, the tough get going” and also be sure to recognize accomplishments upon completion.

<
1
2
3
4
/
4
>
While these entrepreneurship cornerstones may take time to implement at the national, state and district levels, parents need not wait to incorporate these enlightening, practical and powerful bedrocks of the entrepreneurial mindset for it is these principles that are critical to inspiring the next 12-year-old app developer or simply preparing your child for an ever-evolving world.