The Rules of Raising An Entrepreneur by A Mom Who Did Margot Machol Bisnow, Episode 133

These days, the thought of entrepreneurship for our kids as a viable career option doesn’t sound completely foreign or nuts. It may sound risky or unstable and less conventional than becoming a doctor, lawyer, engineer, or accountant – but it’s an option that is increasingly getting popular, especially since the advent of the internet.

Do you think you have an aspiring entrepreneur in your home? What can you do to nourish her or his interests in launching something one day? How important are school grades? Are there any differences between socioeconomic backgrounds or cultures? Would the idea of entertaining a gap year for your child raise your blood pressure – and should it? 

When I was growing up, the internet didn’t exist yet I was that little girl who picked up a green book about how to become an entrepreneur. I was fascinated by the ideas that kids could come up with to make money. But that was where the buck stopped for me until 2011 when I launched my own coaching practice. 

I love the creativity and imagination that go into figuring out the best solution for prospective clients. This truly fills me up with straight-up joy!  It is with this context that I want to introduce this week’s guest Margot Bisnow, a mom of two entrepreneurial sons. Margot offers a lot of valuable insights including some rules you have to think about when raising an entrepreneur child. Don’t get me wrong. You can’t just take an uninspired kid and send them to entrepreneur camp. It’s about raising a kid that’s not afraid to take risks because entrepreneurs are risk-takers.

Before jumping into today’s story and wisdom, I want to be sure you are connected to a completely free group of powerful, driven, and resilient moms with child-proofed coaching or services businesses that can bounce back faster after family interruptions. 

What is a child-proof business? The key to business success as a coach, podcaster, or service business professional is that you and your business can navigate the volatile and unpredictable changes – childcare, illness, newborn, homeschool, etc. Join our Facebook group: Resilient Moms With Child-Proof High Impact Businesses:

Share this with a parent who wants to raise an entrepreneur child in a way that they feel seen, heard, loved, and supported. This is a great conversation that will make you wonder how else can you be a loving and supportive parent to your kid!

About Margot

Margot Machol Bisnow is a writer, wife, and mom from Washington, DC. She has a BA in English and an MBA from Northwestern University. She spent 20 years in government, including being an FTC Commissioner and in the White House as staff director of the President’s Council of Economic Advisers.

Margot’s book, “Raising An Entrepreneur: How To Help Your Children Achieve Their Dreams,” features entrepreneurs and parents discussing how to raise children who are confident, creative, resilient, and happy.


Curiosity: Observe the interests of your child inside/outside of school and let them explore them deeply – explore their persistence/grit

Appreciate: Offer your kids the stability of your love regardless of their professional choices and mistakes. Appreciate and support them for all the things they’re accomplishing.

Options: Consider entrepreneurship as another viable option but it is also one that cannot be forced.

Mentorship: It’s so important for kids to have a mentor, somebody (not their parents) who is telling them that what they’re doing is great, especially if it’s in the area that the kid loves. 

Control: You can’t control how life goes, but you can control how you deal with it, how to approach it, and how to respond. 

Success: Believe that your love and support are what they need to succeed, not anything that you thought. 

Support: It’s a mistake for parents to say to their kids, “spend all your time doing stuff you hate or stuff you’re not good at.” Don’t make your kids feel like they are losers because those don’t matter that much.

Joy: It’s not about parents trying to raise entrepreneurs. But they became entrepreneurs because their parents didn’t punish them for failing and were happy when they tried new things.

Feedback: Don’t punish your kid if you think they fail. Don’t call it failure, but feedback. If they broke something, then they have to learn from it and figure out how to fix it. 

If you enjoyed this conversation, check out these episodes with similar themes:

Hear The Single Biggest Lesson Gary Vaynerchuk Thinks Corporations Need To Learn From Family-Owned Businesses As Well As The Smartest Way To Ask For Equity, Episode 10 

Amy Guth Shares About Overcoming Fear and Embracing Discomfort at This Time of the Great Resignation, Episode 109 

Links to continue to learn from:

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Melissa Llarena

Melissa helps movers and shakers up to those in the corner office rediscover what makes them unique so that they can land their dream job in a forward-thinking company where their ideas are listened to, valued, and supported.

She brings insights from having worked in 16-business units (including Human Resources) in NY, Paris, and London. Additionally, in her former corporate career, she worked on billion-dollar brands for P&G and on IBM for Ogilvy & Mather. Later, as the founder and CEO of Career Outcomes Matter, Melissa created a 3-step “sellable strengths” process which has been the centerpiece of her clients' results.

Melissa applies this method consistently to support mid-level professionals up to the c-suite to get into Fortune Global 500 organizations and agencies. She studied Psychology at NYU and earned her MBA from the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth.

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