Millennial Mums are Doing it for Themselves
by Lorna Wainwright | 11th October 2016 | Starting Up
38% of millennial mums plan to be their own boss. This is according to a new survey published by Nominet – the organisation which runs the .uk web domain:
“In search of the elusive ‘work-life’ balance, 17% of millennial mums expect to set up their own business within the next 12 months, with a further one in five (21%) expecting to be their own boss in the next five years. In fact, nearly one in twelve (8%) new mums are already running post-baby power houses across the UK.”
I’ve been a stay at home mum for ten years so this survey has interested me greatly. In the last ten years I have added two new members to my family, making my former pre-parenting life a distant memory. Long gone are drinking a cup of tea while it’s still hot, and having a tidy house for more than 10 minutes. Me time? Not a chance.
The time came for me to return to work and I thought very carefully about how I could manage our family and still get back on the career ladder. My kids have been lucky enough to have me at home when they needed me. I’ve been able to attend concerts and assemblies to cheer them on. I see them at the start and end of the school day. But I was left blank on how I could still do all that and commit to a conventional job.
Lucky for me, I have a very entrepreneurial partner who was enthusiastic about us going into business together. I’m not sure I would have been brave enough to take the plunge on my own, but here I am, ten months in and loving every minute.
Small Business Tools
We set up BusinessKitbag.com as a useful, free resource to small businesses to help them find the right online tools and services they need to launch, grow and run their business.
Business software has come a long way in the last few years. No longer are there only the software giants making applications for large corporations. Nowadays independent software houses are creating new, flexible online software solutions for small business owners, just like us. We can have the power of enterprise grade solutions, for a fraction of the price.
As most options are cloud-based too, it comes with peace of mind of being completely secure, backed up, and kept up to date. We work all hours so happily we can access our data 24/7 too, and easily share information with each other and our various collaborators.
I had no idea how accessible starting your own business could actually be, and think I would have started something sooner had I known. Hopefully resources like BusinessKitbag.com will encourage more people to take the plunge and start a new venture.
Upskilling by Parenting
Skills useful for business are often enhanced by becoming a parent. Nominet observed that:
“Millennial mums recognise the value of their maternity leave, with the majority (94%) saying the skills gained as a new parent during this time, such as multi-tasking, time-management, forming relationships and keeping calm under pressure, can give them a competitive edge in the business world.”
In my experience, this is absolutely true. Although I had a good education, professional qualification, and career experience behind me, that was nothing compared to the skills and knowledge I’ve acquired since becoming a mum.
I’m happy to report that by being my own boss, it means I can have the flexibility I need to manage my family’s requirements, whilst also nurturing the desire to do something creative and to offer some financial support to my family.
It starts with a good idea, something niche is key. Have a go at a basic business plan, work out what you need your annual turnover to be and divide it by 12. Then decide if that is a realistic monthly target you can reach. Need skills training? There are loads of great online training courses to get you started, some completely free.
I’m thrilled there are so many mums wanting to be their own boss. Here’s to the mums keeping that work/life balance going. Let’s make it a bigger percentage next year!