Working from home sounds like the dream job for all moms. You get to be home with baby and still earn an income , a true ideal in every mommy mind but before you rush of and resign consider the following:
1. What will you do ?
Do you have skills that allow you to work from home? Can you turn a hobby into a full time business? Can you freelance or work from home ? Will you need to complete a course to gain new skill, buy a francise or raise capital to start a new business?
2. What income do you need each month?
What income do you need to earn? Is it higher, lower or the same as your salary at work ? Can you generate this income working from home ? what will your expenses be? Draw up an expense account so that you can keep a record of what you need financially each month. Also , keep records of all purchaces, sales , ect from the begining and set a business budget so that you can start to see a profit and don’t run at a loss for months.
3. Time management
If you are baby’s carer, how many hours do you have to dedicate to your business? Do you have house help or will you be cleaning your own home? Do you have any other family obligations that you need to factor into your day (collecting children, shopping,gym,ect) ? Try writing a journal of the time you spend on each activity for two weeks before looking at your time management, this will help you determine what amount of time you can dedicate to your business at home. You may find you need to add to the above expense account a few hours a week to house help and child care, in order to run your business successfully.
Make a list of tools needed to run your business successfully and ensure you have these to start off with. Nothing is more discouraging than starting a business only to discover that you dont have a the right tools to complete a job .
Keep paper work up to date daily. You will need to refer to your books often and as with any business, the more organised you are the more professional a service you can offer. Dont ignore a business plan that you can keep checking to see that you are accomplishing your goals for your business. Is admin your strong point or will you need to hire someone to do this for you?
6. Advertising and marketing
People often ignore advertising and marketing, brushing it off as an unnecessary expense. How wrong they are ! These are the tools that work for you when you are busy. When you are feeding baby ,changing nappies or fetching the kids from school , its the marketing and advertising you’ve invested in that continues to draw clients to your business .
Moms who work from home can often suffer from cabin fever being stuck working from home. It can also be very isolating without the social interactions of a busy office. How will you combat these? I personally like to break my week by taking bear out to a new outing during the week and having a play date for him on Fridays.
8. Boredom and depression
Working from home is calmer, quieter and with much less social interaction. Moms can often get depressed and bored. What will you do to limit these feelings? I meet with other moms twice a week at least and have over the years taken up many hobbies. Depression can result from moms suddenly being lonely , with unrealistic expectations of themselves and those battling to adjust to suddenly having to do it all …work, watch baby, clean house, have a social life, the stress of being responsible to generate their own salary and feelings of failure.
How will you stop distractions? Recently I had to prioritise how much time I spent on social media , with my phone , ect as i wasn’t getting anything done. It’s a common misconception that if you work from home you not busy, where as to the contrary you are actually always busy. Being able to say no to things that don’t work for your limiting people who don’t respect your time and finding the self will to limit your social media time you can successfully work from home.
So, while we all want to be at home with baby, if you must earn a salary be sure to have a plan in place that is achievable . Know you will need to be flexible , raising children isnt easy and its certainly not predictable.
But mostly mammas, know that whilst it won’t be easy with a tiny baby or a screaming toddler , it will be worth it .