Your Entrepreneur Within
Activity Objective: Girls identify their strengths and skills as entrepreneurs.
Toward Leadership Outcomes:
Through this activity, girls will:
- Gain practical life skills—Girls understand the impact of financial transactions on their lives. (Discover)
- Develop a strong sense of self—Girls have confidence in themselves and their abilities, feel they are able to achieve their goals, and form positive gender, social, and cultural identities. (Discover)
- 5 min. Introduction (Talking Points)
- 45-50 min. Runnin’ Things
- 5-10 min. Reflection/Discussion
- Pens or pencils (enough for each girl)
- Large pad/piece of paper (or chalkboard)
- Make copies of the “Business or Pleasure” handout. (Click here for “Business or Pleasure” handout.)
- Read over the entire activity before meeting with girls.
» Introduction (Talking Points) (5 minutes)
- Say something like this: “Think of all the products you have ever bought (makeup, clothes, shoes, games, etc.). Now consider that at some point, probably not too long ago, that product or brand name did not exist. Someone had an idea to make something different or better than what was already out there. For example, before 1980, there was no MTV. Someone thought, ‘Wouldn’t it be cool to have a TV channel that plays music videos?’ Eventually, the idea grew into a multimillion-dollar company with brand name recognition around the world. So, what makes the person who came up with these good ideas different from you? You both probably have a lot more in common than you think.”
- Ask girls: “Who has heard of the word entrepreneur? Do you know what it means?” (Entrepreneur: a person who organizes and manages a business) “Today we will discover that all of us are already entrepreneurs.”
» Runnin’ Things (45-50 minutes)
- Distribute pens or pencils.
- As a group, brainstorm services that girls have charged people for (such as dog-walking, babysitting, doing the laundry or chores, or selling lemonade, wrapping paper, candy for school, or Girl Scout cookies) and write them on the large pad. If the group cannot come up with many examples, consider asking for services they have provided and could have charged for. As you go, ask each girl to keep a personal list of the services she provided.
- Distribute copies of the “Business or Pleasure” handout. Ask a girl, or girls, to read the story aloud.
- Ask girls: “Is Sontaki an entrepreneur? Why or why not?”
- Ask girls: “What qualities does a successful entrepreneur need?” Make a list on a large pad/piece of paper. Your list may include:
- Separate the group into pairs. Referring to the list of entrepreneur qualities, each girl should share with her partner a short story that illustrates when she used that characteristic in her life. (Point out that the story does not have to be business related, but can also apply to friends, family, or school situations.) Let girls have about 10 minutes for this activity.
» Reflection/Discussion (5-10 minutes)
- “Let’s look again at Sontaki’s story (handout). Sontaki is making a pure profit with her business. What do you think that means?
- “What is the difference between a for-profit and a nonprofit business?” (see side bar)
- “Think about your own values. Do you think you would prefer to start a for-profit or a nonprofit business? Why?”