Nathan Lamkey, VP of Sales and Marketing with McHutchison, is passing along his skills to his three children: Parks (12), Rowe (10) & Brooke (8). Last week, the kids sold perennials at the local farmers market in Montclair, New Jersey, raising money for Team Zoey - a local 5th grader (10) who has progeria, which is rapid aging disease.
"Terra Nova Nurseries donated an assorted 72 tray of their newest introductions, which my kids potted up in June and they grew all summer in our backyard", Nathan tells us. "The deal I proposed to them was they would give 50% of the sales to a local charity of their choice, and they got to split the other half between the three of them. My goal was to give them a real-life opportunity to experience entrepreneurism, while also strengthening their understanding of the importance of giving back to the community.
"I was extremely impressed with their sales skills at the farmers market (I only held the money, while they sold all the plants themselves). It was a great representation of how our consumers are much more apt to purchase a plant when there is a great story accompanying the retail experience. When my kids were able to engage the customers in a conversation and share with them how they grew the plants themselves and the charity they were raising money for, they sold a plant to the customer most every time.
"We often see young children run sidewalk lemonade stands during the summer, which is great. These ad-hoc retail stands provide kids an opportunity to see tangible returns from their efforts, promotes teamwork amongst their friends, gets them away from technology, and also helps teaches them how to sell. However, children are capable of so much more than we are aware, as adults we just need to give them support, structure and guidance to help them explore all their potential", Nathan concludes.