Entrepreneurial From a Young Age
Early Childhood Story
Mar 1, 1959
Columbus, OH, USA
I do not recall what prompted the idea to set up a lemonade stand in front of my house. Perhaps that is just the natural progression of a young entrepreneur. Armed with the assistance of my two friends we built a store front out of cardboard and opened shop. As with most childhood business endeavors, our first customers were supportive adults. They purchased our lemonade independent of whether they were really thirsty.
As we continued to sell more drinks a pile of coins formed before our eyes. Our success prompted the desire to strive for larger sales. We wanted to take our little company to the next level. I ran into the house and rummaged through the cupboards in search of a new revenue stream. Perfect I thought, as I came across my forgotten Halloween candy. I never had much of an interest in sweets, so I simply stowed the stash in the cupboard.
With a large felt tip marker, we added the word “Candy” to the front of our sign. With the new product line we attracted a new market segment; neighborhood kids that were not interested in lemonade would gladly sacrifice their allowance for candy. To our complete satisfaction, the pile of coins increased two-fold!
Of course, each sale contained 100% profit with ingredients that were obtained at no charge from our parent’s cupboard. When our parents shut down our access to free products we had a critical operations issue. We had customers but no product! Then we had a brilliant idea. We would use the proceeds from the previous sales to buy candy from Marie’s General Store. We would add an amount to what we paid and continue to sell to our customers.