Starting a family brings lots of commitments you absolutely must deliver on. There will be new demands on your time, which means you’ll have to be super-organised. Beyond that, as your family grows you will have to meet new challenges, guide your children to make the right choices.
These skills are also required of a good entrepreneur. And many mothers are finding it’s quite possible to juggle business commitments while raising a family – and doing well with both.
In fact, if your business is an online business, then it becomes even more straightforward to run a business and a family in parallel – as many ‘mompreneurs’ are now demonstrating!
Probably your most important priority will be to find something you can do while your children are out at school, and/or after they have gone to bed. Clearly, you’ll also want a home-based online business which doesn’t demand too much in terms of office or storage space for the products or services you plan to provide.
In addition, your best bet would be to look at some business you already know quite well – perhaps because of previous work experience. However, if you do a careful audit of your present skills and experience, you may also find you are quite well-equipped to run a number of businesses requiring similar skills.
If there are some things you’re really passionate about doing, this too can sometimes be a route into business. Just remember that, as a mum, you won’t have too much time to learn entirely new business skills if that means you’ll be unproductive over a long period of training and practising your skills.
Imagine having your own successful creative business that allowed you to work your own hours, take leave for ALL of the school holidays (if you wanted to) as well as providing you with a great income?
Starting your own business from scratch can be very satisfying. But it’s also quite risky if your business idea is unproven, and will almost invariably be extremely demanding of your time.
To mention just a few tasks:
All the while you will have to create and deliver the product or service upon which your business has been founded.
If that sounds like a major task, that’s because it is. Launching a successful startup business from scratch is something which has proved beyond the capabilities of some full-time entrepreneurs, let alone those who also have to care for a family.
However, for some people, this is the only truly satisfying route. If you have an idea that you are passionate about, the hard work may be worth it to see your idea come to fruition.
If you compare this with buying an established website business, you will immediately see some of the major benefits. First of all, your fully-fledged business will already have an existing customer base, and if it needs suppliers then these will also be in place.
But perhaps most important of all, you will be able to see and evaluate the brand you may potentially wish to buy through the eyes of a potential customer when you look over the website.
However, what will interest you just as much is the trading and financial records. These will show you how much it costs to run the business and what the profits are. It should also help you to estimate what time commitment will be required to run such a business. Furthermore, instead of spending time trying to get a new business up and running, acquiring an existing online business should mean that you can start earning income almost from day one.
Of course, buying a business will mean an initial capital outlay. The more profitable the business, the more you will need to pay for it.
Do remember that assessing the real worth and potential of an existing online business usually requires some professional experience and technical knowledge. This is particularly so when auditing records of the volume of web traffic visiting your site.
With experience, it is possible to gain an accurate picture of business trends: For instance, how many visitors become customers, how many bring return business and recommend you to others, and how such matters are changing over time.
Once you have located the right business to fit your lifestyle and family commitments, with the best prospects and at the right price, you are good to go and ready to become yet another successful mompreneur. Good luck!
By Jo Thornley, Head of Brand and Partnerships at Dynamis. Joining in 2005 to co-ordinate PR and communications and produce editorial across all business brands. She earned her spurs managing the communications strategy and now creates and develops partnerships between BusinessesForSale.com, FranchiseSales.com and PropertySales.com and likeminded companies.