Motherhood is an amazing and crazy thing. One minute, you’re on cloud nine and completely in love with this miracle-of-a-child you brought into this world … then next minute, you’re huddled in the corner having a mental breakdown because you simply cannot deal with one more tantrum today from your insatiable, hardheaded child. If you can handle the endless emotional roller coaster that is motherhood, then owning your own business will seem like a walk in the park. Read on to see why motherhood is the best prep course for becoming an entrepreneur.
(Photo Credit: Happy Worker/Flickr)
The Case for the Momtrepreneur
Starting a business is something that many professionals desire, but few carry out successfully. If you’ve ever worked in a job that didn’t live up to the hype, then you have probably daydreamed about ditching the dead-end 9-to-5 and starting your own business doing something you’re passionate about. The lure of making your own hours, being your own boss, and having total control over your income is a nothing short of a dream come true, especially if you’re a mother. Being a “momtrepreneur” means you have the freedom and flexibility to be a big, bad boss lady AND be a mother at the same time – the ultimate for #momgoals and #careergoals, right?
Women in the Workplace
Thanks to quite a few things that have happened for women’s rights over the past half-century or so, women are much more liberated, educated, and empowered than ever before. In fact, today, women make up nearly half of the workforce and beat men when it comes to earning undergraduate degrees. However, men still out-earn women across the board in all industries (particularly in high-earning careers, like STEM) and men still dominate top-tier positions by a long shot. Oh, and we can’t forget to mention the embarrassing state of maternity and paternity leave in the U.S that drives many mothers out of the workforce due to financial or childcare issues. You can see, then, why mothers crave the sweet, sweet freedom, flexibility, and power that comes with being a momtrepreneur.
Performance of Women-Owned Businesses
You may assume that mothers are discouraged from making the entrepreneurial leap because women-owned business don’t perform well, but that couldn’t be farther from the truth. According to American Express OPEN’s The 2014 State of Women-Owned Businesses Report, the performance of women-owned firms are pretty darn impressive.
As of 2014, it’s estimated that there were some 9.1 million women-owned enterprises that employ nearly 7.9 workers and generate over $1.4 trillion in revenues. What’s more, the number of women-owned businesses grew 1.5 times the national average from 2007 to 2014, not to mention revenue and employment growth for women-owned businesses tops that of all other types of business, with the exception of the largest, publicly traded corporations. (Cue Beyoncé’s “Run the World (Girls)”).
Moms Are Entrepreneurial Unicorns
If you’re a mom who is in need of a few reminders as to why you’d make the ideal entrepreneur, here are three to give you the push you need.
1. You already negotiate with the best of them.
If you think about it, kids are crazy-good negotiators. They’ll throw a fit just to get 5 more minutes before bedtime, and then somehow wind up getting 15 more minutes – in other words, you’re dealing with pro negotiators, here.
Take the lessons you’ve learned from the tiny humans that roam your house, and keep your eye on the prize. You may not realize it, but every negotiation you get into with your child, the wiser you become as a negotiator. Therefore, when you’re negotiating a contract with potential clients, you will be more confident about what you want, and less likely to budge for sake of being nice – and all thanks to your children’s incessant nagging.
2. You wear countless hats as a mom.
It goes without saying that if you’re a working mom, you’re wearing at least 25 hats on a daily basis – and that’s before 10 a.m. As an entrepreneur, you’re probably not starting out with much or many, so you’re going to have to wear nearly all the hats: sales, graphic designer, marketing, accounting, etc.
As a mother, you’re also going to be required to take on a plethora of roles, including housekeeper, chef, chauffeur, personal assistant, personal shopper, therapist, doctor, to name a few. I’m not promising that you’ll be terrific at all of these roles, but mothers are incredible and tenacious beings who somehow, some way get everything done.
3. You’re a master guru at time-management.
I don’t know if you know this, but when you become a mother, you unknowingly sign an agreement with your children that their needs, wants, and desires come first, regardless of the time or day. As for your needs … well, it’ll seem like you don’t even have the time to even try and remember what those luxuries are anymore.
The days will seem longer than ever before when you’re tending to a child, but it’ll also seem like there is zero free time for you to get anything done – in other words, it’s a lot like what you’ll experience as an entrepreneur. You’ll learn to squeeze in an impossible amount of work and chores into the split-seconds of quiet time you get while your child is napping or keeping busy, and you’ll be amazed at how good you’ve become at managing your time. Time management skills are invaluable to running a business, and many entrepreneurs who are lacking in this area, usually end up with poorly run businesses that eventually fail.
Make Your Momtrepreneurial Dreams a Reality
As you can see, mothers are majestic beings, and motherhood is one of the best training programs for an entrepreneur-hopeful. If you’re a mother dreaming about the perfect set-up for your professional career and personal life, then you may want to really consider the possibility of turning your passion into a thriving business. You already possess a great deal of what it takes to be successful entrepreneur, so why not take the leap and make your dreams a reality? Ready, set, LAUNCH!
Tell Us What You Think
Have you taken the entrepreneurial leap of faith as a new mom and made your career dreams come true? Share your inspiring story on Twitter with our community of momtrepreneur hopefuls looking to do the same, or leave a comment below.