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How to teach your children to earn money

July 05, 2014 15:11 IST

How to teach your children to earn money

P V Subramanyam

I have seen some really wealthy people and some reasonably rich people. The way some of them bring up their children is awesome and some of them hurt their kids too much.

Here's how you must teach your children to earn money and rspect the value of their labour.

1. I think kids should be encouraged to earn their own money over which they have full control: When a kid earns her/his own money it is when the kid appreciates the value of the Rupee. Not when s/he does a social service stint with a 5-star NGO.

Please no Velvet gloves.

Let her/him work as a life insurance salesman or a kid selling impossible to sell books, or in a book shop, or wherever.

At the end of 30 days of slogging s/he gets Rs 3500, and suddenly, the money looks respectable.

Now do NOT go in your Capris to drop and bring her/him home. Let her/him learn how a person earning Rs 3500 lives.

2. Push her/him out of the nice sugar-coated, fully-protected cocoon: One parent said 'Oh he goes through a lot -- when we travel abroad for a vacation, my husband insists that our kids travel economy, not first class.'

These babies are 21 and 17 year old boys. Give me a break guys. This is not hardship. Hardship is when you give your kid a Eurail Pass and ask her/him to tour Europe on a budget (so that s/he sleeps in the train and uses the bathrooms in the Railway stations). Or ask her/him to go ALONE on a tour of India on a real tight budget -- second class, railway rest rooms, hostel dorms to stay -- THAT is better.

3. Let her/him work under somebody else and earn money: Do not put her/him in a friend's place. Put her/him in a friend's friend's friend's place.

The distance will ensure that s/he does not get any special privilege at the workplace. Let her/him learn to negotiate with her/his reporting boss for her/his 'want to go early' and 'can I come late' kind of requests.

This WILL NEVER HAPPEN IN YOUR OWN OFFICE. Let her/him work in a field not connected to you. If you are in the electrical business, let her/him work in a book shop or in an auto sales room.

Or as a sales assistant to a big architect. Hide her/his identity completely. No 'home' car dropping off. Let nobody know that he is rich and spoilt... :-)

The 'unspoiling' done by the first job is a MUST -- especially if you have spoilt her/him silly.

Photographs: Utam Ghosh/