Contributor Jenna Sherman has done it again! Thank you for helping Professional Mom offer insights and good solid advice for moms in their business adventure.
As a stay-at-home mom, your schedule is probably packed. Busy schedules often stop mothers from considering life as small business owners. However, if you’ve dreamt of becoming a “mompreneur,” this dream can come true.
You have the skills and the education necessary to make a difference in your field. Follow these three tips from Professional Mom to establish a business while juggling your home life.
- Build a Strong Foundation
One of your first steps is to form your business. Choose between a sole proprietorship, partnership, limited liability company, corporation and a cooperative. For the first four options, you need to register with your state. Different states have different filing fees and requirements that you should familiarize yourself with in advance.
Pick out and register a name that reflects your brand and aligns with your goods and services. According to the Small Business Administration, trademarking prevents other companies in the U.S. from using your business’s name.
In turn, trademark infringement can occur if you choose a business name too similar to a competitor’s name. To avoid unfair competition, do an internet search for your preferred company name. If you find no results, check the list of the fictitious or assumed business names at your county clerk’s office. For the names of existing corporations, contact the state filing office to find out how to search their database.
- Learn To Do the Impossible
When you start your business as a stay-at-home mom, you might feel like a work-life balance is impossible to achieve. However, this is a challenge you can meet. Start by creating boundaries with your family. Consider holding a family meeting where you can tell everyone your expectations. Explain your work hours and how your children and partner can respect that time when you’re working.
To balance time with your kids, set schedules. Try to keep your children’s schedules relatively stable every day, but understand that while you can control your work schedule, you cannot always control when your kids need you. Daily planners, calendars and strict organization can help you maintain quality time with your family while growing your business. Building flexibility into your work schedule allows you to stay productive and focus on your family too.
It’s wise to also extrapolate preferred outcomes and to get ahead of them. For example, you need to learn how to navigate marketing your business, hiring staff and handling payroll. It’s a lot to juggle alone. There are ways to make this less taxing, however. Tap into software tools for payroll to ensure accuracy, guaranteed payments and automated tax filing. You can also connect with freelancers through job board sites, rather than post a job and sift through candidates. And you can use free marketing tools that help boost your presence as you get familiar with the entrepreneurial landscape.
- Accept Accountability To Move Forward
Accountability is one of the cornerstones of progress. As a business owner, you have your share of hurdles to get through. For example, if you have trouble juggling midday work meetings and your children’s afternoon schedule, do not give up. Hold yourself accountable by admitting that you cannot do all of these tasks at once. This opens the door for solutions, such as hiring a babysitter for a few hours every week.
If you have difficulty with this, consider getting an accountability partner. Whether a business coach, a family member or a friend, this person can help you track your productivity and hold you accountable for it. For this system to work, you need to set specific, measurable goals with a realistic time frame. You can also keep your partner accountable with weekly meetings to discuss the goals you met.
Becoming an entrepreneur can be as fulfilling and exciting as being a mom. You can have the freedom of making an independent income without missing out on important milestones and quality time with your children. As you build your company, it is up to you to establish productive habits that help you become the best business owner and mother you can be.
*Jenna Sherman, a professional mom from Portland, Maine, is a welcomed contributor of ProfessionalMom.com.