save room for the thin mints; it’s girl scout cookie time again. however, it seems strange to me that in all the years since the mid-1990s, it’s not only the box designs that haven’t changed about girl scout cookies but also their business practices.

the mom of some scouts explained to me that part of what cookie sales are supposed to achieve is to get the girls out into the community, teach them how to count change, and how to handle money. it all seems very reasonable, except it begs the question: so what?

i’m not so sure that counting change and handling money will be valuable skills in the next 20 years. there was once a time when balancing a checkbook was a skill, but every online bank already does that for you. what will be valuable skills in the next 20 years? e-commerce and mobile technologies, marketing and sales.

why not teach our girl scouts how to use square for accepting purchases, or develop mobile apps for tracking orders and distribution, or create online storefronts? why not have them develop a marketing approach and manage sales in their neighborhoods? don’t tell me they’re too young; that’s a cheap excuse. they’re modern skills for a modern world.

maybe it’s time we start teaching lessons that matter.