By Sylvia Juuko
The graduation season is once again upon us, bringing with it the usual pomp and fanfare. For any graduate, parent/guardian, celebration is warranted to mark this achievement.
Like we all know, such celebrations bring a lot of financial pressure particularly if they were not planned for in advance. While it’s not my intention to rain on your parade, it’s crucial to remember that once all the dust has settled after the merry making, speeches delivered, drinks and food consumed, the graduates, guardians have to contend with reality.
On the other hand, you have a category of graduates who have been pampered all their lives. The parents have inadvertently turned them into children with lack of direction, work ethic and an entitlement mentality.
Irrespective of your good intentions of ensuring that you give your children their heart’s desire, if you do not do it with moderation, you are creating a generation that cannot survive without you once you cut the ‘umbilical cord’ of financial support.
Therefore, any parent would want to examine what kind of environment they have created for their children. If your child expects you to bail them out of all their money mistakes, you are not doing them any justice.
You will not only throw a graduation bash but also be expected to use your influence, to start harassing CEOs of companies to find him/her a job. Such expectations could inevitably cloud your child’s attitude towards work.
For the graduates, it’s important to exploit the networks and the friendships you have nurtured at the university.
From experience, it’s teaming up with such like-minded people that you can be able to start a savings or investment group. For example if you came together as a group during your stint at the university and saved some of the pocket money for investment, you would not be looking for a job but building onto this investment.
The right attitude is key to success. Have an open mind, value any opportunity that comes your way. For example, volunteering is important in cultivating experience. If you have a business idea, you can volunteer in an enterprise that falls within your area of interest.
Remember, learning has not ended at the university. Be open to learning particularly financial education throughout your life time.
The writer works with Bank of Uganda
ENCOURAGE YOUR CHILD TO START A BUSINESS
It’s important to remember that a child’s financial future begins at home. You may have seen or read anecdotal stories which showed that growing up in an environment where finances are a challenge has nurtured many entrepreneurs.
Some people need some form of adversity to get their creative juices and business acumen going. As such, it’s very likely that by the time such a child graduates; they will have tried and tested many business ideas.
Have you encouraged your child to explore their business ideas? They can afford mistakes because they have the advantage of age on their side.
If you did your homework, it’s likely that such a graduate will not throw a tantrum if you don’t hold a graduation party for them because their outlook to life will be very different.
Such focused graduates will save you sleepless nights because they hold what it takes to make their businesses or careers work.