Jobs for teenagers – should you encourage it?

Money and work are tricky things to talk about at the best of times. So it’s even more complicated trying to raise the topic with a teenager.

Teens’ demands for money can put pressure on family budgets. Helping your teen learn how to manage their own money can set up valuable skills for later in life.

It’s best if rules around money are discussed, rather than imposed. But it’s also okay to set limits on what you will allow them to spend their money on, whether it’s from an allowance you give them or from money they earn themselves.

If the allowance is linked to chores, reach an agreement in advance. Withholding money for work not done can cause resentment if you haven’t made the rules clear beforehand.

You may want to encourage your teenager to take on a part-time job. Work can help teens develop their social skills and problem-solving skills as they deal with bosses, co-workers and customers.

But make sure work doesn’t interfere with school or the amount of sleep they need. A pattern of tiredness, irritability or lack of interest may signal the teenager is not coping.

Set some rules about what time kids have to be in bed. Work may have to take second place to that but it will depend on the individual.