Starting Your Career

Helping Your Child Build A Skilled Trade Business

Brook Jillings

Posted 07/16/2019

The goal for any parent is to set our children up for success and feel confident that the career path they choose will ensure financial stability while still allowing them to take pride in their work. If your child has the entrepreneurial spirit, starting a skilled trade business offers these benefits with complete ownership and control of their future.

What Is a Skilled Trade?

Skilled trades include any occupation that involves specialized training and skill, such as:
Tile and flooring
Appliance repair

Professionals who work in these trades get the benefit of solid job security because they provide services everyone needs that require a complex set of skills to accomplish.

Choosing a Skilled Trade

There are hundreds of skilled trades to choose from, and it's important for your child to select the one that best matches their strengths and passions. Someone who prefers to work outdoors may not be a good fit for tile and flooring but might thrive as an exterior painter or framer. If your child struggles with measurements, carpentry and drywall could be a frustrating career choice, but perhaps they have the attention to detail required to work as an electrician.

Learning a Skilled Trade

To be successful in any skilled trade, comprehensive education is important. There are two ways your child can learn their trade, and choosing between them comes down to availability and learning style. Trade schools offer a traditional school setting and provide hands-on experience in a controlled classroom environment. This is a great option for someone who learns well through class instruction and has the financial security to pay reasonable tuition costs.

Apprenticeships are an excellent choice for individuals who learn better through performing activities and cannot afford to be unemployed. With this option, your child is hired on to work under an experienced tradesperson who takes the responsibility of teaching on the job. If the apprenticeship is offered through a large company, there is often a requirement to work as a full-time employee for a period of time once the apprenticeship is completed.

Building Relationships

If your child intends to start a skilled trade business, it's important that they start building connections now. Starting a successful business is mostly about creating relationships with other professionals and potential clients. You can help with this by sharing your child's journey with friends and family members so they know who to call if they need those services.

Organizing the Business

Once your budding entrepreneur is ready to strike out alone, there are a few organizational steps that should be taken.

  • Obtain any professional licensing or certifications required by your state.
  • Create a solid business plan. There are a number of free tools online that can help with this.
  • Register the company with the state. The paperwork that needs to be filed depends on the business structure chosen. For many single-owner businesses, organizing as a limited liability corporation (LLC) offers the most convenience and protection. Sole proprietorships are another option but offer less protection, while a standard corporation may be less convenient.
  • Obtain professional insurance to protect client assets and your child against loss claims.
  • Set up a business bank account to separate business and personal finances. This is often required to be eligible for the financial protection of your business structure.

Once these steps are completed, all that's left to do is encourage your child to work hard and follow through with commitments. Marketing plans can help them build their business in the early years, but recommendations from clients are the best marketing tool for any company.

If you'd like to learn more about the skilled trades, check out the information on Generation T's website, and find out how your child can turn interest in a skilled trade into a successful career.