Technology has finally caught up with the Girl Scouts. Either that, or the Girl Scouts have finally chased down technology. Girl Scout troops are now using a mobile payment processor so they can accept credit cards for purchases at cookie stand .
For consumers, not having any pocket cash will no longer be an excuse not to buy a box or two of these iconic pastries. You may have to come up with another excuse for passing those girls by. Before you say “NO” though, think of the ramifications. Not only is the Girls Scouts a rite of passage for girls across the country, but it teaches girls a lot of life lessons, including the importance of friendship and financial literacy.
Use of Technology
For a generation that was practically born with a computer mouse and cell phone in their hands, it’s a logical move for the troops to start using a mobile payment processor. In this case, it is a phone app, AppNinja, which is designed for the iPhone. It turns out there is an app for that too and almost anything else you can think of. The results of credit card payment acceptance is that Girl Scout cookie sales are up. In central Ohio, for example, cookie sales for one weekend were up by $1,500—and that’s just one weekend.
The life lessons the Girl Scouts teaches young girls goes beyond learning how to use their cherubic little faces to guilt people into buying their cookies. While the concept does teach the girls about sales, it also teaches them about setting and reaching goals. Practically, each girl sets a sales goal as she enters into cookie selling season. Counting money, returning change to buyers, and now knowing how to run credit cards are all a part of developing money management skills early in life. These are the skills that help the girls of today become the financially independent and responsible adults of tomorrow.
Financial lessons do not start and end with swiping a customer’s credit card for a cookie purchase either. Keep in mind that the girls sell these tasty snacks to fund Girl Scout projects and initiatives. While these lessons may be fun and age appropriate, the Girl Scouts teaches the girls fundamentals of capitalism and consumerism. Along the way they learn essential elements of financial transactions, value of money, fund raising and planning. These skills will help them with the transition into adulthood. The experience also gives them basic education on how to keep a job, which will be well remembered when they grow up.
Meanwhile, all of this leads to a Business-Wise Badge, the Dollars and Sense Interest Project Award or a myriad of other rewards for the girls. So keep in mind, that girl you buy cookies from today may just be the next entrepreneur you’ll be reading about 10 or 20 years from now.