Mother’s Day is just around the corner (Sunday 31st March), and to celebrate we thought we’d ask some of our VAs what it’s like to be a mum and run a business.
At Get Ahead VA, we offer our virtual assistants a flexible approach to working, so that they are able to provide a professional service to our clients, whilst also fitting their work around other commitments, such as family. As a result, many of our VAs are also parents, and they’re brimming with good advice about managing life and business side by side!
If you’re a parent who’s interested in starting a business, here’s are some tips from our VAs to get you started.
Keep on top of things
Hazel Spencer, one of our VAs based in Leeds, understands how important it is to have good organisational skills as both a mum and an entrepreneur. She says, “I have two young children (aged 2 and 6) and run a business. They are actually my motivation, and although it can be a juggling act at times, my tips are to stay organised and not to get overwhelmed!”
Build structure into your day
Fiona Ibbetson, head of the Get Ahead VA Leeds office, emphasises the importance of creating a structure for your working day, in order to fit in both work and family commitments. She typically works from 8:30–5:00, but she fits the school run into that time by working for a couple more hours after the kids come home. She tends to schedule meetings and networking sessions for lunchtimes, and she says that working within school hours gives a structure to the day that makes it easier to achieve that all-important balance.
Find your tribe
Freelancer and mum Sophie Le Brozec spoke to Get Ahead VA virtual assistant Jennifer Chamberlin on her blog,* about how being a mum changed her attitude to work – for the better. She says, “My career only really took off once I became a mum. [After a few years] I was in Facebook groups, I had entrepreneur friends [and] I had people I could share wins and fails with. Women who understood my juggle of kids vs my business. So whilst my outlook about my capabilities changed massively when I became a mum, actually being able to pull everything off only came with more years of experience, study and a tribe behind me, supporting me.”
Set an example
For Melanie McDowell, another of our VAs, running a business as a mum offers the golden opportunity to model a different way of working to her kids. She says, “I’m acutely aware that I’m a huge role model to my children. When they were younger, I focused on them entirely, but now they’re both teenagers, I think it’s important for them to see me working hard, handling multiple clients, multiple income streams, as well as a family and a home, whilst still knowing that they’re my number one priority. I like that they see an alternative way to work rather than the linear, traditional 9-to-5 career path they’re told about in school.”
Are you a business owner struggling to achieve a good work–life balance? A virtual assistant can help to ease your workload, leaving you more time for the really important stuff. Get Ahead VA’s virtual assistants can help with everything from social media management to emails to telephone answering, so to find out more, please give us a call on 01483 332220 or email us at [email protected]. We pride ourselves on being the staff you don’t see, but the difference you do.