BSA Supply No. 35891

By earning the Entrepreneurship merit badge, Scouts will learn about identifying opportunities, creating and evaluating business ideas, and exploring the feasibility (how doable it is) of an idea for a new business. They will also have the chance to fit everything together as they start and run their own business ventures.


  1. In your own words, define entrepreneurship. Explain to your merit badge counselor the role of the entrepreneur in the economy of the United States.
  2. Identify and interview an individual who has started his or her own business. Find out how the entrepreneur got the idea for the business and how the entrepreneur recognized it as a market opportunity. Find out how the entrepreneur raised the capital (money) to start the business. How well is the business doing? Report what you learn.
  3. Do the following:
    1. Write down as many ideas as you can think of for a business. Get ideas from your family and friends. From your list, select three ideas that you believe are the best opportunities for you.
    2. Explain to your counselor why you chose these three ideas rather than the others on your list.
    3. For each of the three ideas that you chose, prepare a list of questions that you would ask potential customers.
    4. For each of your three ideas, informally interview potential customers, using the lists of questions from requirement 3c. Report what you learn.
    5. Using the information you have gathered, choose the one idea that you feel is your best business opportunity.
  4. Conduct a feasibility study of your business idea by doing all of the following (briefly writing or explaining each item to your counselor):
    1. Product or Service
      1. Identify your business goals.
      2. Tell how you will make the product or perform the service. Determine whether it is technically feasible (practical or doable).
      3. Determine how you can make enough of the product or provide enough of the service to meet your business goals. Explain how you will accomplish this.
      4. Identify and describe the potential liability risks of your product or service.
      5. Determine what type of license you might need in order to sell or to make your product or service.
    2. Market
      1. Determine who your customers are. Identify the type of person who would buy your product or service.
      2. Describe the unique benefits of your product or service.
      3. Tell how you will promote and sell your product or service to potential customers.
    3. Finances
      1. If you are selling a product, determine how much it will cost to make one prototype.
      2. Calculate the selling price of your product or service. Explain how you determined the price.
      3. Tell how you will sell your product or service and make a profit.
      4. Determine how much money you will need to start your business. Explain how you will get the money.
    4. Personnel
      1. Determine what parts of the business you will handle yourself. Describe your qualifications for the work. Determine how your business responsibilities will fit into your schedule.
      2. Determine whether you will need additional help to operate your business. If you will need help, describe the qualifications your helpers should have and what duties they will perform.
  5. Do TWO of the following:
    1. Sketch a prototype of your product or write a description of your service.
    2. Create the prototype. List all of the materials you used to make your prototype. Calculate the cost of all the materials and labor to compute the total cost of making your prototype.
    3. Design a promotional poster or flier for your product or service.
    4. Project (estimate) your sales through the first three months of operation. Calculate the profit you expect to make.
  6. When you believe that your business idea is feasible, start your business. Show evidence that you started your business (sales receipts, for example, or photos of the product). Discuss with your counselor any ethical questions you have faced or think you may face in your business venture.


Scouting Literature

American Business, Communications, Personal Management, Public Speaking, and Salesmanship merit badge pamphlets, and any pamphlets related to your business venture.


  • Berg, Adriane G., and Arthur Berg Bochner. The Totally Awesome Business Book for Kids. Newmarket Press, 2002.
  • --------. The Totally Awesome Money Book for Kids. Newmarket Press, 2002.
  • Bernstein, Daryl. Better Than a Lemonade Stand: Small Business Ideas for Kids. Beyond Words Publishing, 1992.
  • Beroff, Art, and Terry Adams. How to Be a Teenage Millionaire. McGraw-Hill, 2000.
  • Cathers, Ben. Conversations With Teen Entrepreneurs: Success Secrets of the Younger Generation. iUniverse, 2003.
  • Ferguson Publishing Company staff. Careers in Focus/Entrepreneurs. Facts on File, 2000.
  • Harper, Stephen C. The McGraw-Hill Guide to Starting Your Own Business: A Step-by-Step Blueprint for the First-Time Entrepreneur. McGraw-Hill, 2003.
  • Kushell, Jennifer. The Young Entrepreneur's Edge: Using Your Ambition, Independence, and Youth to Launch a Successful Business. Random House, 1999.
  • Lieber, Ron. Upstart Start-Ups! How 25 Young Entrepreneurs Overcame Youth, Inexperience, and Lack of Money to Create Thriving Businesses. Broadway Books, 1998.
  • Linecker, Adelia Cellini. What Color Is Your Piggy Bank? Entrepreneurial Ideas for Self-Starting Kids. Lobster Press, 2004.
  • Mariotti, Steve. The Young Entrepreneur's Guide to Starting and Running a Business. Three Rivers Press, 1999.
  • Schiffman, Stephan. Young Entrepreneur's Guide to Business Terms. Scholastic, 2003.
  • Vallee, Danielle. Whiz Teens in Business: A Simple and Complete Guide for Teenagers to Starting and Managing Their Small Business. Truman Publishing, 1999.

Organizations and Online Resources

444 De Haro St., Suite 203
San Francisco, CA 94107
Telephone: 415-503-5880
Web site: http://www.bizworld.org

By Kids For KidsTM
1177 High Ridge Road
Stamford, CT 06905
Web site: http://www.bkfk.com

Entrepreneurs' Organization
1199 N. Fairfax St., Suite 200
Alexandria, VA 22314-1437
Telephone: 703-519-6700
Web site: http://www.eonetwork.org

EntreWorld: Resources for Entrepreneurs
Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation
4801 Rockhill Road
Kansas City, MO 64110
Telephone: 816-932-1000
Web site: http://www.entreworld.org

Future Business Leaders of America--Phi Beta Lambda
1912 Association Drive
Reston, VA 20191-1591
Telephone: 800-325-2946
Web site: http://www.fbla-pbl.org

Inc. Magazine
375 Lexington Ave.
New York, NY 10017
Telephone: 212-499-2000
Web site: http://www.inc.com

Junior Achievement
One Education Way
Colorado Springs, CO 80906
Telephone: 719-540-8000
Web site: http://www.ja.org

SCORE Association
409 3rd St., SW, 6th Floor
Washington, DC 20024
Toll-free telephone: 800-634-0245
Web site: http://www.score.org

Small Business Administration's Teen Business Link
Web site: http://www.sba.gov/teens

Students in Free Enterprise
Jack Shewmaker SIFE World Headquarters
1959 East Kerr St.
Springfield, MO 65803-4775
Telephone: 417-831-9505
Web site: http://www.sife.org

TeenStartUps.com Entrepreneur Media Inc.
2445 McCabe Way, Suite 400
Irvine, CA 92614
Telephone: 949-261-2325
Web site: http://www.entrepreneur.com/tsu

U.S. Small Business Administration Answer Desk
6302 Fairview Road, Suite 300
Charlotte, NC 28210
Toll-free telephone: 800-827-5722
Web site: http://www.sba.gov /answerdesk.html

Y&E The Magazine for Teen Entrepreneurs
Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation
4801 Rockhill Road
Kansas City, MO 64110
Telephone: 816-932-1000
Web site: http://ye.entreworld.org

YoungBiz Inc.
P.O. Box 7987
Atlanta, GA 30357
Toll-free telephone: 888-543-7929
Web site: http://www.youngbiz.com

Youth Entrepreneurship: Research Guide
Kauffman Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership
Clearinghouse on Entrepreneurship Education
4801 Rockhill Road Kansas City, MO 64110-2046
Toll-free telephone: 888-423-5233
Web site: http://www.celcee.edu/about /guides/youth.html

Youth Venture
1700 North Moore St., Suite 2000
Arlington, VA 22209
Telephone: 703-527-4126
Web site: http://www.youthventure.org