Shaquille O’Neal makes his kids write a business plan before he’ll give them any of his money
The term “nepo baby” most often refers to the offspring of a successful Hollywood actor, but the term can more generally apply to those whose parents are at the top of other industry ladders.
The kids of Shaquille O’Neal, one of the NBA’s highest-paid players with a massive business empire, could certainly make the list. However, O’Neal is more concerned with teaching them the value of hard work—something all parents can relate to, even if they don’t have a net worth of $400 million.
Sticking to what he calls “respectable nepotism,” O’Neal told Insider that if his kids ever ask for money, they have to provide a solid “business plan” before he’ll consider offering.
“Since you want me to be the bank, I’m gonna do exactly what the bank is going to do to you,” he quipped.
O’Neal told Insider that his eldest son Myles, for instance, didn’t receive equipment to help his pursuit of a DJ career until after his dad was convinced of his actual potential.
Now Myles has made a name for himself as a DJ—holding a residency at Wynn Las Vegas and headlining across the country. And according to his dad, “he’s done it by himself.”
All parents want to set their kids up for success in adulthood. But how to really do that is often a dilemma, particularly when it comes to striking a balance between coddling and neglecting.
There’s no denying that being born into wealth is a huge advantage, but even then, there’s the risk of missing out on important life lessons that build not only practical problem-solving skills but character.
It’s no wonder why many celebrity or high-profile parents do go out of their way to make sure their own kids don’t lose touch with reality.
Drew Barrymore, for example, famously doesn’t buy her kids Christmas presents but instead focuses on making memories during the holidays. Similarly, best-selling author Esther Wojcicki parents under the rule, “Don’t do anything for your kids that they can do for themselves.”
It goes without saying that being able to choose to withhold support in favor of opting for learning the value of hard work is in itself a luxury. But still, stories like these show two things. One, not all kids of celebrities are lazily mooching off of their parents’ affluence. And two, raising good humans who thrive is a very personal and customizable process.
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