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VOL. 44 | NO. 34 | Friday, August 21, 2020

‘Bee Fearless’ is a honey for young entrepreneurs

By Terri Schlichenmeyer

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Sometimes, a thousand ideas buzz around in your head. You’re creative and like to come up with fun ideas.

That might make you famous someday, and it might make you rich. And in “Bee Fearless” by Mikaila Ulmer, you’ll see how that’s possible now, even though you’re still a kid.

Mikaila Ulmer was stung by a bee when she was just 4 years old. It happened again a few days later.

She cried, of course, because it hurt, but her parents encouraged her to learn why those things happened. She discovered bees are in serious trouble and became fierce about helping them.

At around that same time, Ulmer saw a flier for the Acton Children’s Business Fair that was being held near her Austin, Texas, home. She told her mother that she wanted to be in the fair and, because it was five months away, she had plenty of time to decide what she wanted to sell.

Children in Austin then were participating in a citywide Lemonade Day to learn about business, and Ulmer saw an opportunity. She’d sell lemonade and to help the bees by sweetening the lemonade with honey.

She made several early mistakes but decided that was OK. There is so much to learn about running a business, but the two most important things are that it should be fun and make a difference.

“Bee Fearless: Dream Like a Kid”

by Mikaila Ulmer

c.2020, G.P. Putnam

$17.99

240 pages

After that, there are three steps to actually starting your business:

• Identify a problem that you or someone else has

• Do your homework on the problem and a solution

• Make sure you’re really passionate about the product.

Then, once you’ve found your wings and you’re ready to fly, remember these three words:

• Give (because it’s rewarding)

• Save (because it’s good for your future)

• Spend (to reward yourself).

• Finally, work hard and you can be successful, too.

If you are an adult, you might be asking yourself why you would ever want to read a children’s book like “Bee Fearless.” In truth, the reasons are many.

Being an entrepreneur isn’t just for grown-ups, and this book allows you to mindfully be a mentor to a child with ideas. Mentorship is something that author, entrepreneur and Shark Tank dealmaker Mikaila Ulmer advocates, and she urges readers to seek wisdom if they don’t know or understand something, which is great advice for any age.

For the adult entrepreneur, this book could also serve as a business primer because its child-friendly simplicity doesn’t diminish a reader. And if you’re hoping your child might follow parental footsteps into the family business, there are plenty of inspirational early lessons available here.

Be aware that though Ulmer was just 4 years old when she was stung by a bee and bitten by the entrepreneurial bug, this book is really best for 10- to 16-year-olds and grown-ups who want something different.

Look for “Bee Fearless,” because missing it might kinda sting.

Terri Schlichenmeyer’s reviews of business books are read in more than 260 publications in the U.S. and Canada.

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