Take a couple of kids at home, combine a mom with little business and marketing experience, and add a mother's desire to launch a new business What do you have? The ingredients for potential entrepreneurial failure.
This is exactly the prospect many moms face every day. 'Opening a new business isn't easy to do,' says Albany resident Shannon Cherry, owner of Be Heard Solutions ( www.beheardsolutions.com), a public relations firm for women-led businesses and creator of the Mommy, Inc. blog (www.mommy-inc.com), written for mom entrepreneurs. 'But women are becoming entrepreneurs at twice the rate of their male counterparts. They want to nurture a business along with nurturing their children.'
The co-author of 'Become Your Own Great and Powerful: A Woman's Guide to Living Your Real, Big Life,' Cherry is an entrepreneur who works at home. She has two newborn twin girls. 'It wasn't so long ago that the idea of a mom working at home and raising children seemed farfetched. That's why every day is Mother's Day – because we should be celebrating all entrepreneur moms' achievements.'
According to Cherry, entrepreneur moms can have success both with raising their kids and bringing home the bacon, but it takes dedication and hard work. 'It can be the closest thing to the best of both worlds,' she says. 'However, there are several things moms who want to start a business should remember.'
Cherry offers some tips, in honor of Mother's Day, to help moms in business:
You already have the skills. 'When you're a mom, you already have the skills needed to run a business,' says Cherry. 'After all, raising kids takes stamina, dedication, organization and love. It's exactly the same needed for running a business.'
Have a plan. 'Whether you work inside or outside the home, you need time to get the job done – without the kids around. That means you will need to plan some sort of childcare so you will have time to take care of business,' she says. Cherry also suggests working within your kids' schedules by utilizing naptimes and when they are in school.
Find support. 'It's not easy to try to do it all. So don't,' Cherry says. 'What you need to find someone to help. It could be your partner, hiring someone to do the things you can't get done or don't have talent to take on, or fining like-minded moms online just to vent and chat with.' She suggests checking out organizations like Wild Women Entrepreneurs or eWomanNetwork. Both have many mothers who are striving to achieve success in business while raising a family.
Cherry says no mom should try for the perfect work-life balance. 'There's no such thing. Just do what needs to be done the best way you can,' she explains. 'Dishes still in the sink? So what. Laundry still needs to be folded? Big deal. What's important is to keep yourself and your children happy. And if that means starting your own business, I say go for it.'