It’s never too late to become an entrepreneur… And it’s never too early, either, judging by my son, Branson Gaudet. He has already made a name for himself at 13 years old, and his story contains some valuable business lessons. They might surprise you with their maturity and value, too.
Despite his young age, Branson is already a serious business owner. He founded BCG Perspective, a growing video marketing agency. Understanding the language of his generation, Branson decided to focus on social media marketing… He’s achieved remarkable success, and that’s not just a proud dad talking.
BCG Perspective works with numerous local clients. It’s also expanding to other states. Just recently, Branson did a campaign for a company in Washington, thousands of miles away from our home in New Hampshire. That’s how far-reaching his ever-growing client base is!
What can a 13-year-old teach you about being an entrepreneur? Here are some of the top lessons to remember:
Business Lesson #1 – Find a Mentor Who Makes Sense to You
Mentorship is a critical factor for success at any age. Why waste your time and resources on experiments when you can follow in the footsteps of those who have already made it?
Obviously, Branson had no trouble finding a few mentors. Not only have I been in business since well before he was born, both of his grandfathers are entrepreneurs as well! He followed the guidance of those around and absorbed from all kinds of sources. The results followed naturally.
Even the most successful people in the world rely on mentors. They know the value of continuous improvement, which is why they always look for new sources of knowledge.
If you want to make it in today’s hectic environment, you’ll do the same. Find someone who’s already in the place where you want to be. You can use their help and support as you make your way up.
Business Lesson #2 – Choose Between Being an Employee and Being a Business Owner
BCG Perspective isn’t Branson’s first venture. His entrepreneurial spirit showed up much earlier in life. At the age of four, Branson decided to open his first lemonade stand… And naturally, he sought my help.
I gave him two options. I could give Branson the money needed to buy everything and open his stand, and he would work at a rate of $2 per hour.
Alternatively, Branson could use his own money from past birthdays, Christmases, and so on… And everything the lemonade stand earned would be his profit.
Branson immediately went for the second option. Even as a little kid, he knew that he didn’t want to work for someone else.
As a business owner, this is a choice that you have to make. You can expend your energy on low-value tasks – or focus on the big picture.
Which do you choose?
Business Lesson #3 – Be Proactive to Get Your Foot in the Door
Like any budding entrepreneur, Branson had to figure out how to get his first clients. Not only did he have very little experience, he was a 13-year-old kid… Much older people have the same fear of not getting taken seriously.
But that didn’t stop Branson. He spent one summer emailing local businesses. He went on Google Maps to find businesses to reach out to.
Most of those businesses never got back to him, but one company replied, and Branson proceeded to create videos for them. He didn’t charge them anything because he intended to use the work as a testimonial.
One step at a time, Branson built authority and positioned himself in the market.
This goes to show that anything is possible… IF you have the courage to go after what you want. Branson didn’t wait for clients to come to him. He went out there, put in the work, and found those who could benefit from his services.
As a business owner, you must have a go-getter attitude. You’ll need it to get ahead of your competitors.
Rather than waiting around for opportunities, create them.
Business Lesson #4 – Start a Business That Doesn’t Feel Like a Job to You
This is probably one of the most important business lessons you’ll ever encounter, and Branson learned it when he was still a kid.
You see, he didn’t get into the film business for the money. He did it out of passion. Even when he doesn’t have any client work, Branson creates and edits videos for fun.
Would you do your job if there wasn’t any money in it?
If you truly want to succeed, the answer should be a resounding “yes!”
Because your results will ebb and flow. You’ll have times of great success and times of great struggle. If you do it solely for the reward, your motivation will go through peaks and valleys too… And if the tough times drag on for long enough, you might give up altogether.
As an entrepreneur, don’t do something for the sake of getting paid. Pursue your passion and let the money be a natural consequence of your work.
The Time to Act Is Now
Even if you discount his age, Branson has learned a lot about business already. His business lessons apply to every aspiring entrepreneur, too.
It might shock you to learn that a 13-year-old did everything on his own. While he sought my guidance, he never expected me to lead him by the hand or take care of things for him. Branson knew what he wanted to do, and he went out there to start building a future for himself.
Are you ready to do the same?
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