Why Are We Not Teaching Children About Looking For A Small Business Loan ?
Looking For A Small Business Loan is something rarely taught in any school, yet with the fact that the world needs more entrepreneurs, it is likely one of the best things to educate our youth about for preparation of “real life”.
Tom Friedman, market president of First National Bank, Ankeny says:
I recently received an email from Southview Middle School teacher Amy Akers, who is part of the Ankeny Extended Learning Program. She had just finished working on exponential equations with her eighth-graders and wanted to give them a real life application. Her first thought was to have someone teach them about compound interest. Since I have known Akers for several years, she thought to call me.
If you know Akers, then you know you cannot say no to her. However, I had reservations about teaching the kids about compound interest, mainly because interest rates are at historic lows and compounding practically nothing still leaves you with just a little more than practically nothing. Instead, I offered to teach the kids how to calculate a loan payment. The kids are just a couple of years away from driving, and knowing about loans might be more practical. She agreed and we set up a classroom visit.
IMMFinancial.com has a series of videos on Youtube that teach Entrepreneurs about Small Business Loan Products,what they are used for and how to apply. Here is one of the videos entitled “Application Walk-through Series: IMM Small Business Loans”.
Whether you are seeking something on the smaller side or something a little larger, an IMM Small Business Facilities are very flexible and simple to apply for. This video shows the program requirements and the Website and Process Walk-through to set proper expectations.
Do You Teach Your Children About Looking For A Small Business Loan ?
Then I panicked. I panicked for three reasons. First, my math skills were rusty at best. Second, these kids were smart and motivated — that’s why they were in the Extended Learning Program. Finally, and maybe most importantly, I didn’t know how to calculate a loan payment manually. Throughout my 35-plus years as a banker, I have always had either a calculator or a computer to do that chore for me. I knew if I studied and practiced a little bit I could get through the math and teaching portions of the day. For the loan payment formula, I turned to a tried and true friend for the answer: Google.
The good news was that I found the answer with relative ease. The bad news was that as I tried to work through the formula, Google recommended that I use a graphing calculator. I didn’t own one. But there was also an option that could be completed using a “normal” calculator. Fortunately, my son Ben was home from college and walked me through the formula so that I was comfortable using the calculator on my phone.
Why Teach Children About Looking For A Small Business Loan ?
As small business owners and managers, you might be wondering what my experience with those smart eighth-graders has to do with business. Often, we are called upon to be experts in many aspects of our business, and we might not know much about what is expected of us. My recommendation is to do what I did: Research, study and call upon others who can help you understand. We always need to be learning about different aspects of our business, and there is no better way to learn than to prepare to teach others.
In the end, my experience with the class was very good. The students were engaged, asked good questions and didn’t make me feel like they were smarter than me, even though they probably were. I learned, they learned and I hope they got as much from the experience as I did. It looks like I panicked for no reason after all.
Small Business Today is a bi-weekly feature written by Tom Friedman, market president of First National Bank, Ankeny. You can view past columns at www.fnb247.com, under the “Education” button at the top of the screen then look under “Small Business Today Articles” on the left side of the screen.
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