Coined by author Antonia Chitty, the term “mumpreneur” is yet to create a space in English dictionary, but it has definitely created a space in the business world. Juggling with errands and children, many bootstrapped mumpreneurs around the globe have challenged high-flying VC-backed entrepreneurs and found success. More mums are nowadays working towards becoming a successful entrepreneur.
The biggest motivation comes, in most instances, during the maternity break, as it takes a while for women to get back to the workforce. Wrestling with everyday mummy duties, some inquisitive mums start to seek alternative ways to keep themselves busy. That’s how many mums have had the light bulb moments, which they pushed forward with grit and a mission. Not to mention, the enticement towards being independent. A little Web search would pull up a staggering variety of mumpreneur ventures, from a media agency, blog, organic cotton, healthy food, brewing, fashion to unconventional ideas like nappy wallets. The trend is picking up, especially after renowned figures like Jessica Alba and Kylie Jenner ushered a simple idea to a billion dollar venture. You may argue that there is not much game being celebrity-turned entrepreneurs, as they can simply flip their fan-base to customer-base. But there are many mums around the world with the almost nondescript background and no funding support who have made it big.
Here are some tips for aspiring mumpreneurs to get started on their projects:
It All Starts With a Mission
Although it may sound repetitive, yes, a clear mission statement is the starting point. Making money could not itself be a mission as it will eventually stumble at some point when things wouldn’t go as planned, which is the obvious nature of any budding venture. But if the mission is geared by an inspiration which is distilled from either a frustration or a problem, or a gap or a sad experience or even an inspiration to build something that will make life easier–then, this vision will light-up the often-treacherous path of the entrepreneurial journey. Ask yourself, why am I doing this?
Find a Coach
Once you are clear with your mission, then you need a guide on how to propel your idea. In sports, having a coach is absolutely essential for athletes to help them to achieve their goal much like in sports, a coach or a mentor can play a transformational role to bridge the performance gap and be a “navigator” in your journey. Mentors will also help you to find blind spots. Even Oprah Winfrey needed one to rise to the peak of glory, so why wouldn’t you? You may get overwhelmed these days with a staggering number of people claiming to be a business coach when they are actually not qualified to do so. Further, you may also get caught up in the confusion of coaching or mentoring.
Don’t be a Helicopter Mum
Early years to establish any venture could be a real tussle and requires a positive mindset. Note, that even before you plan to move mountains, you have to move the mountains from within your mind that is blocking your vision to see the big picture. Post-natal depression is one of the biggest causes that douse self-doubt among new mums.
Research suggests that one in every six women suffers postnatal depression, leaving the mums in an emotional rollercoaster. Especially, “helicopter mums” find it difficult to keep away from “bub-business” and focus more into their own business. Of course, both are important, but you have to be able to strike a balance. Try to view the world with an open and positive mindset. Make sure to take the help of a counsellor if you need one.
Create Your Tight Bubble of Total Focus
I am a big fan of Canadian author Robin Sharma’s “tight bubble of total focus” concept which encourages blocking your time focusing on your priorities. Research suggests that about 2.1 hours from our daily life is gone due to distraction as we all possess a “monkey-mind”, very fickle and
ever-distracted. Besides, the delusion towards perfection can further lead to procrastination. Therefore, self-discipline is very crucial. Juggling so many duties would be tedious at the beginning and you may find yourself being abnormally overworked. Make a laundry list in a notebook, or use reminders, alarms or Web-based platforms like Todoist to get work done in an organized fashion.
Don’t be a dinosaur
Being tech literate is not a choice, rather an absolute necessity to become a mumpreneur. Not that you have to be “tech-savvy”, but functional knowledge on the “dot-com boom” and social media are indispensable. Freelancers can make it easier for a dime; still, you have to have control over your stuff. There are tons of websites these days, e.g. Upwork and Freelancer, which can help you to outsource almost everything. This can be effective to the extent that you can control. So take the ownership of your thing or be outsourcing wise.
Author – Sayem Hossain
This article was originally published in Entrepreneur magazine.
Photo courtesy – Pexel.