Among all this talk of political campaigns, the climate crisis, and a downward facing economy, you’ve gotta love NY Magazine for this awesome little article. The basic gist of the article is they interviewed a bunch of different kids who run lemonade stands about “the lemonade business.” The kids give the absolute greatest answers to the reporters’ questions. I think the following is my favorite exchange:
How did you lure customers? WILL: We made up a word that was Oreo and lemonade: OREONADEOL!
Does it work? WILL: Sort of. We have a lot of customers, and a few were hobos. SAM: No customers were hobos.
How did you know what to charge? SAM: My personal financial advice is 25 cents, because everyone can afford it. Even if your allowance is $1, you will be able to afford four glasses. Also, you can make a classy combo with Oreos, or do three glasses for 50 cents.
Do you have advice about giving good customer service? SAM: You might want to joke with them. WILL: But not a lot. Sam does it too much. SAM: You know it’s good if they point their finger at you, “Ahahahaha.” Laughing is contagious.
Do you enjoy having lemonade stands? SAM: If there’s a definition of fun, that would be the definition of it.
I don’t think I ever successfully ran a lemonade stand (or any business for that matter), but my sister and I did once try to sell a concoction we cooked up in our kitchen called “sweet milk.” Essentially we took some milk, added any other ingredients we could find and stirred… not surprisingly, no one stopped to buy any. Not even my mother would try it (she used the “I’m on a diet” excuse). Come to think of it, I don’t even think we tried any. Clearly we were not natural chefs (or businesswomen).
My only other experience with “sales” were the toy sales my siblings and I would hold in which we tried to sell each other our old toys. I was actually VERY good at this, though I must admit that by being the oldest I probably had the upper hand. I once managed to sell my sister 2 one dollar bills for 1 ten dollar bill, which I later got in trouble for and was made to “refund.” Stupid parents! They ruined everything…
I guess the real reason I love pieces like this is because it’s so much fun to read a humorous article that triggers memories that I have somehow managed to forget. I truly believe there is nothing more important than our pasts (and by association our memories) because it is those experiences that have shaped who we become. Granted, I don’t know how much can be learned from my unsuccessful foray into the “sweet milk” business or my underhanded money making schemes at the expense of my siblings, but nonetheless at least I learned at an early age that perhaps business just isn’t my thing.