The hand that rocks the cradle can rule the world. This well-known saying may sound clichéd but it is true never the less. However, first let us examine why a mother should start her entrepreneurship journey?
In days gone by the woman’s role was that of a homemaker not only in India but around the world. Women had to fight hard to find a place in the sun, including the right to vote. They have had to fight tough battles outside their homes if they had to make a mark.
So what has changed? Nothing and everything! Modern lifestyles, living and eating habits have created enough time in the hands for women. Today, if a woman decides to be a homemaker it is in many cases out of choice and not compulsion. Becoming a mother no longer stops her from pursuing her cherished dreams. I would say a child will respect her much more if he or she sees a happy fulfilled mother than a frustrated one, who is very talented but was unable to utilize her talent and fulfill her potential.
Entrepreneurship is ideal for women who have become mothers for more reasons than one.
First, felxible timing as she can choose her working hours. There is no need to compulsorily punch in at 9 am.
Secondly, she can take up a hobby and convert it into a business e.g. baking cakes, opening a salon, starting a beauty business, play school, art classes if she is so inclined, an art gallery if she has access to space.
Thirdly, she can start blogging, open a social media company, write content, blog for restaurants for example, the choice and options are endless today. If she was in a high-flying job like strategy or business analyst before she became a mother, she can continue doing projects from home. All it needs is a spiffy website, which is SEO compliant and a nice Facebook campaign where she can announce to the world that she is in business. There is plenty of work out there!
Fourhtly, all a mother sometimes lacks is confidence that she can do it. Women are pretty good at doing multiple things and they quite enjoy it as long as they don’t stress themselves silly. The self-worth of a woman who makes her own money is sky high. She can be truly empowered to do things what she wants to do and can also supplement the income of the family.
Fifthly, sometimes a single mother may not have a choice and is forced to do something on her own as she may not be able to hire expensive help to handle her kids and domestic chores. But a determined lady can do it.
Some pointers which can help:
- Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Ask and it is normally given. Women are notoriously afraid to ask especially from their family.
- Lots of business and personal loans available from reputed banks and NBFC’s. Do not hesitate to consider this option. Check interest rates and the EMI.
- Enlist help from ex-colleagues to help spread the word.
- Use social media to increase sphere of influence
- Join a business networking group in your city. Not only will you get hands on training but also the company of other entrepreneurs. This helps in referrals and is a powerful way to generate business.
- Make a small business plan for yourself. Does not need to be fancy. But it should have clear cut objectives, revenue stream, expenses and how you intend to keep business flowing for at least 3 years. You can call this your vision document.
- Keep expenses of at least four months handy in case business is slow and you will be able to handle basic expenses like travel, communication, basic raw material or one person’s salary.
The biggest excuse women or for that matter men give to not becoming entrepreneurs is “they don’t have money”. Yes it maybe a fact but if you really wish for something “nothing in the universe will stand in your way” as the famous saying goes. So what are you waiting for? Mothers fire up the business plan or vision document and get going!