Defiant child

Effective Ways of Instilling Discipline in Your Kids

Disciplining of children has become a very touchy issue. Rather than deal with it, we are dancing around it! We all love our children very much but we cannot escape the fact that we need to discipline them. The world has changed, at least we agree on that. We are now living in a technological era, meaning our children are being exposed to way more than what we knew at their age. Can you imagine what is going in their little minds as they try to process all the information they are bombarded with? They end up acting up or acting out. Being parents who are also schooled in new ways of raising our children, we are not quite sure how to deal with this. Do we spank our children or do we give them a time out? How do we deal with them and their errant ways?

Having two daughters of my own, I am faced with the same dilemma and it is very important to decide early on what you will do, for indeed children love consistency. Let them understand that certain behavior leads to certain consequence so that you are not changing the rules of the game every time. For younger children, I believe spanking is important. They are at an age where pain is something they don’t necessarily want to feel and it might deter them from repeating bad behavior. Speaking with a firm voice is also important. Note though, not shouting because this just shows that you are frustrated. Amazingly also, when you get into the habit of shouting, your children follow suit. We are their greatest role models, remember? To spank a child, get to their level and explain why you want to spank them before you do it. Then once you have, explain that that does not nullify your love for them. I really understand that sometimes we spank when we are really annoyed. Try and avoid that because it might lead you to really hurting your child!

Now if you notice that spanking is not working or when the children are a bit grown, say they are in their pre-teens, work more on withholding privileges. Yeah, at this stage, they have many. They might love certain programs on television, they might have cell phones, video games, very close friends who they love visiting… any of the above could work just fine. You withdraw a privilege for a certain period of time only to be reinstated when there is reform or after the agreed period.

The truth of the matter is, the earlier you arrest a bad behavior, the easier it is for the child to change. The formative years are critical in ensuring your child tows the line.  I always think of the story of the prisoner who was about to be executed and had asked to see his mum as his last wish. When the mother showed up, he requested her to move closer as he wanted to whisper something in her ear.  When she did, he bit her ear! With bitterness, he explained that she never told him that stealing was wrong and now he was about to lose his life.

The same applies to our children. Jail and the hangman noose might seem like out of this world, but that might be by and large what we are exposing them to if we refuse to discipline them. They might not go to a physical jail but they may lead a life similar to one being ostracized by the society, not being able to keep a job or have a social life.

Therefore instill discipline as early as possible in order to raise adults who are of benefit to the society. 


 Lucy Mwakaba

By Lucy Mwakaba, Co-Founder of The Lead Child.

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I'm rich of my family

Pros & Cons of Running a Family Business

I have always been lucky to have relatives that I can bounce around crazy business ideas; but it struck me the other day that there are things I need to consider if I was to open a business with a cousin or even an aunt. Here are some of the pros and cons of being in business with family.


  1. You can present the best aspects of your family especially the values that the family hold true. The best example is family run retail shops. They always have a motto that derives quality and honesty within the same sentence. This means the founders have a sense of pride showing this values which can be considered necessary in the daily life of not only the family but also an individual.
  2. The understanding that you can leave a legacy behind, which encourages founders, especially during initial stages when faced with tremendous struggles, to carry on. This legacy ensures that descendants can challenge themselves to expand the business to new heights. The best examples of this are major corporations that started as family businesses and have managed to survive hundreds of years later.
  3. The family business is also a way to teach children the values you want to instill in them. Many entrepreneurs or even corporate executives tell stories of how they learnt important lessons about life when the family business was struggling or when they had to take odd jobs. It is necessary to expose children to hard work and even resilience so that they can appreciate success.
  4. Family members are able to improve themselves personally and professionally. This is because the challenges faced in day to day activities of the business have lessons in store and can instill patience that is needed for the business to thrive.


  1. It is easy to forget to put in place legal structures. This is because most family businesses are started when family relationships are at their best and the legal challenges come across during major conflicts.
  2. Many business owners forget to have a succession strategy or assume that their children will take over the business, which isn’t always the case.
  3. The employees are all family, and they can get complacent; and it may become impossible to maximize employee resources to full advantage.
  4. Challenge of separating personal and professional relationships may arise.
  5. Leadership challenges sometime arise, as some families assume that the responsibility falls on the oldest though it is necessary for the responsibility to fall on the one who has better management skills.
  6. The changes in family dynamics are often ignored and thus can create a vacuum, as the family member who had a particular responsibility is not able to avail themselves; and this can create conflict among those left in the business.
  7. Lack of professional mediation to ensure that disputes are resolved in an amicable manner is taken for granted as families assume that they can solve it with meetings held within the family. It can lead to financial woes that can drag on as the aggrieved family member is not satisfied with the ruling. The presence of someone neutral would allow the conflict to be resolved in a more professional manner

Family business has never been easy but it is possible for the business to thrive if the right foundation is put in place.

Are you in a family business? Please share your experience with us in the comments below. 


Nyakio Kiruthu



Nyakio Kiruthu left the world of banking after 4years to venture into the world of business. She is a shareholder of Thayu Farm hotel, a family business. She holds a degree in Economics and Masters in International Business which enables her to explore the world of business through a unique perspective.

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