Katie Francis can be an entrepreneur, and pleased with it.
“On my business cards, it says ‘Katie, Girl Scout Cookie Entrepreneur,’” she says.
She’s certainly earned the title — the 12-year-old broke the national Girl Scout cookie record this Sunday, selling 21,477 boxes.
The sixth grader, who plans to market 100,000 boxes of cookies during her amount of time in Girl Scouts, is a shining exemplory case of the entrepreneurial spirit Girl Scouts aims to cultivate in its members. “THE LADY Scout cookie sales program may be the largest entrepreneurial program for women in the united states, if not the world,” says Anna Maria Chavez, the CEO of Girl Scouts USA. Eighty percent of female small-business owners in the U.S. are former Girl Scouts, based on the organization.
But Francis isn’t only an inspiration to other girls. She’s a person who can teach any entrepreneur something or two.
As a lot more than two million Girl Scouts all over the world find out about entrepreneurship by selling cookies, some tips about what even the expert entrepreneur can study from Katie Francis’s success.
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1. Devote the time. The most crucial secret of cookie sales may be the simplest and one which many entrepreneurs forget: Dedicate your time and effort. For Katie, selling cookies became a complete time job. She worked at it seven hours a day after school and 12 to 13 hours on weekends. That meant 8 weeks of giving up horse riding lessons, dance classes, voice lessons and a good visit to visit her grandmother in Texas. She doesn’t regret it, though. “I’ve had so many unique experiences that otherwise I wouldn’t experienced,” says Katie.
2. Set big goals. With out a goal to shoot for, Katie says she could do not have sold the a large number of cookies. “I knew that I possibly could achieve an extremely, really high goal. So each day, I woke up thinking, ‘I know I could do this.’” Nobody had challenged the national record of 18,000 because the 1980s. However, Katie went into cookie sales armed with a concrete goal and confidence that she could shatter the prior records. And, when she did, passing the 18,000 mark with weekly left in cookie sales season, she simply upped her goal to 20,000, then to 21,000.
3. Create manageable steps for success . Eighteen-thousand boxes of Girl Scout cookies is difficult to even visualize. So, Katie broke it down: she and her mom calculated just how many cookies she would need to sell weekly, then each day, then per hour. Understanding that she had to market 30 to 46 boxes one hour meant that Katie could take the procedure one step at the same time.
4. Create a team . Katie’s Girl Scout troop is filled with high achievers. As the average Girl Scout sells around 150 to 200 boxes, Katie’s troop averages one or two thousand boxes per girl, allowing the complete group to push one another to create higher personal goals. Katie also found a mentor in the last record holder, Elizabeth Brinton. After her mom helped her locate the girl who set the record in the 1980’s and the pair talked on the telephone, the chance of breaking the 18,000 mark became an achievable accomplishment for Katie.
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5. Interact with customers . When selling cookies Katie had a straightforward go-to line: “Do you wish to buy or donate Girl Scout cookies?” Asking people if indeed they wished to “donate” was key: even individuals who were on a diet or had already bought cookies had trouble saying no to Katie’s laminated info sheet with information on her behalf troop’s plans to aid the meals bank and deployed service members. Plus, having a cause helped Katie interact with customers, who were excited to listen to about where their money would go, in addition to find out about Katie’s personal goal to break the national record.
6. Know your market. As a skilled cookie saleswoman (she broke the state record both previous years), Katie quickly learned where so when her cookies would sell around her home in Western Oklahoma. If she had create a booth in a subpar location, Katie wasn’t afraid to finish off and leave when she wasn’t hitting her hourly goals. Remember: it isn’t worth wasting time marketing to a population or location that’s not working when you’re able to pivot to a far more profitable market.
7. Make your self memorable. Katie sported a distinctive hairstyle throughout her entire cookie sale season: a ponytail with a daisy. By enough time she had broken the record, the daisy had began to smell such as a parking lot because of her hours trekking to market cookies, nonetheless it had served its purpose to create Katie apart. As well as the signature hairstyle, Katie distinguished herself by drawing in the crowd at booth sales with cookie-centric songs and dances. “Once in a while when I was bored, I’d do an Irish Jig,” she says.
8. Encourage competition . With Katie’s success, more girls could be trying their hands at the national record next year. “I say do it now, try,” she says. “I bet you could do it, too.” For the lady Scouts, getting ultimately more girls thinking about entrepreneurship benefits everyone.
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