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TEDx Edmonton Raising Kids To Be Entrepreneurs

by admin on April 07, 2010

Here is the TEDx talk I gave a few weeks ago.

I have a tendency to be hyper critical of myself and this one especially so.  I was really nervous. Felt a ton of pressure to deliver a new idea to the masses.  I went too fast. I rambled at times. I was distracted with my A.D.D. even though I’d spent about 80 hours on this talk. And I think I could have used a few different words besides ‘sucked’ so often.

Anyway, I’m passionate about this. Hope you can get that sense.

Kids really can create companies to solve every problem the world has, and to capitalize on all the ideas they have already.

Let’s help them.

Let’s teach kids the skills they need to be Entrepreneurs. Let’s teach them that being an Entrepreneur is an awesome career.

25 thoughts on “TEDx Edmonton Raising Kids To Be Entrepreneurs”

  1. Delighted you drove all that nervous energy into creating a masterpiece and powerful message. I’m grateful for your inspiration and friendship and applaud your efforts. I have shared your link with all my friends with kids.

    Rob Ell

  2. Loved this talk Cameron, and I couldn’t agree more with your ideas! Hopefully soon being an Entrepreneur won’t be looked at as risky, but instead will be looked at with admiration!

  3. Cameron,
    Amazing presentation. We need more wealth creators than wealth consumers, we need more self sufficient people, we need to cultivate the entrepreneurial DNA in our kids, and we need to be teaching entrepreneurship and business skills in school at all levels starting before grade 1.

    ps – I didn’t read your self analysis until after watching the video and none of it even occurred to me. You are a great speaker.

    Thanks Eliot.

  4. Brilliant Cameron.

    Intrinsic passion trumps polished (aka Steve Jobs) presentations every time. And you did!

    Thank you for sharing the insight into the adrenaline pump that happens before/during presenting and your example that an engaging and compelling presentation is the result.

    Entrepreneurs are our unsung heroes. They sit in the back of classrooms looking for work-arounds and ways to make it better. Your right Cameron, we need to encourage independent, creative thinking to make a healthy, rewarding place for our kids and their kids to thrive.

    Keep up the speaking engagements and spreading the word!

  5. I think the nervous energy is great! From someone who is fortunate to have ADD as well, I enjoyed your TED talk very much, and will be promoting it elsewhere for others to see. Thanks!

  6. Cameron,

    I want to thank you so much for such inspiring presentation. I have taken the liberty to post your video at my blog, as I strongly believe this is a very important message that needs to be spread everywhere.

    You have made a remarkable job at making the case for the importance of this topic and, well, personally I can assure you that thanks to your ideas and concepts shared in this presentation, I am implementing right away a completely new approach to raising my two kids, and I want to thank you for that.

    All the best!

    Greetings from Poland,


  7. Cameron – This speech is so AWESOME! This is WHY I started our company Raising CEO Kids just a few months ago! I would love to interview you sometime! Please keep sharing your passion about raising entrepreneurs. I have three children (13,11,6) and all of them are starting businesses. We need more passionate parents like you!
    Sarah Cook

  8. Amazing presentation. My wife almost had an aneurysm when I told her that if our kids didn’t want to go to college because they wanted to be entrepreneurs I would fully encourage them to do so. It took some serious discussion, but I think she gets it now.

    Thanks for sharing!

  9. Brilliant video and concepts. Thanks for sharing this. My wife comes from the ‘get a job’ mindset, but I totally believe in this way – maximizing gifts and talents and helping them to grow what they are best at!

    We just have a 3 yr old and newborn now, but we are getting there.

  10. Cam, you are awesome. Glad you had too much caffeine; it proved the point.


    “got someone else to do accounting 13 times” is funny… an exact number

    i loved the … uh… I got side-tracked and forgot what I was typing here

    the crazy sideways stuff – interrupting yourself

    damn good thing you showed a picture of “pops” because we don’t know what those are here in the US

    right on with the allowances. EARN, not entitled.

    SCHOOL: if you sucked at it, why keep doing it?

    ADD: stop calling it ADD. It is NOT a “Disorder”. It is a gift. Call it ADG if you must. Or call it something better… I don’t know what. High Energy Enabled?

    great list of what to teach kids:
    – problem solving
    – to ask questions
    – to be creative
    – to lead others
    – to learn from mistakes
    – how to save money
    – to want to make money
    – how to sell
    – to ask for help
    – public speaking
    – to never give up
    – to see solutions

    kids can change the world as entrepreneurs.

    Thank you.

    Consider this video regarding school:

    And this alternative way of looking at school and kids:
    And the “community” version of SelfDesign:

  11. Really great presentation, Cameron! The concept behind it is the most important thing of all. Your slide towards the end titled “teach kids these skills” says it all. I think we should throw out 90% of the curriculum taught to kids in our schools and focus on teaching those things. Sure, the history of the War of 1812 is interesting, but it’s no where even remotely close to the importance and real-life application value of teaching kids these skills.

    I was lucky. I got out of the public school system and taught myself right after graduating elementary school. A few weeks into middle school I had enough, dropped out and taught myself using Google and the Discovery Channel, History Channel, and Nat Geo Channel, as well as many trips to Barnes and Noble. Had I stayed in school, I really think they might have beaten all of the curiosity out of me.

    Great message. Let’s get this message out to the masses!

  12. Thank you, Cameron, this is excellent and so very, very timely!

    I am just watching kids in Vancouver taking great action to stop the proposed education cuts in BC..

    Will post your link on their fb site (my daughter started this group last week as soon as she heard of the cuts and now they have almost 600 members focused on taking action against more school cuts.)

    Our kids are so very bright, if we just let them be.. and encourage them and love them lots 🙂

    Thank you very much.

  13. I am so inspired by your talk and that video at the end. Thank you!!! I have a 2 year old son and another one on the way and you have reminded me of my thoughts about being an entrepreneur – I love the examples you told of your childhood and your children. I love the story idea at bed time. Thank you so much – you have moved me!!


  14. Cameron – this is such an important story. Thank you for sharing. We are currently enjoying the challenge of raising our 7 year old son who already has plans for his dot com but can barely sit still to learn his basic grade 1 unless challenged by more complex subject matter! It has not been an easy journey by any means. So many famous thought leaders, actors and sports stars started out just the same way.

    Thankfully we were recommended Choice School, an outstanding school in Vancouver that plays to this style of learning. I look forward to a future where the greater education system believes in harnessing the potential of these future leaders versus stifling them for not following the standardized learning style. We can hardly wait to follow this next gen of leader’s career! In a house of two successful entrepreneurs we couldn’t imagine it any differently!

  15. Cameron – this talk is exactly what I believe and stand for. Thank you for getting the courage to make this speech – I will be sharing it with as many as I can and will refer to it in all of my efforts. Would love to connect sometime. Kudos!

  16. Cameron –
    Loved hearing about all the stuff you did as a kid. It would be pretty awesome to take that list of skills and create some sort assignments/examples for parents around each of those.

    Great stuff!

  17. Great Video!
    Loved the idea of inspiring children to tell bed time stories and expand their thinking and imagination.
    I also liked the idea of creating the money they want to buy their toys. That way they learn to get what they want by doing what they like. It gives a better feeling about creating money.

  18. My friend sent me this video after I told her I was helping my 9-year-old son start his own company. We’re working on his business plan now, and he even has some friends at school who want to partner with him. Man, did this video speak to me! My son is smart as heck, but struggles with paying attention in school. He’s going to be a BIG success some day.

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