I started a business with a baby: Suzannah Butcher of Work For Mums

Tell us a little about your business

I run a resource and information website called Work for Mums which is aimed at mums who are working from home or who are looking for the opportunity to work from home.

What was your job before starting your business?

I have been running a successful direct selling business (Phoenix Trading) for the past 3 years and have also worked as a Youth Support Worker and Pre-School Assistant within the last 5 years.

How did you go from your old career to your new business?

It was a gradual progression.  My long term goal has always been to be self-employed and earn money whilst  working from home.  My personal choice is that I would prefer not to have the children in full-time child care from a young age, so this also influenced my decision. When we moved house/area a few months ago I made a decision to put my efforts into building my Work For Mums website and my direct selling business, rather than looking for an employed role.  My husband is also self-employed so we have shared childcare during school holidays.

What were your reasons for starting a business?

I knew I had drive and ambition but wanted to channel it into something that I could do on a self-employed basis. Our children will always come first to our work commitments so I definitely wanted a role where I could work around them.  I would be disappointed to miss a sports day or school assembly because of work commitments, so flexible work hours were a must.

Did you use any childcare?

My daughter is at pre-school and my son is at school, so I have a few hours a day to focus on work if I’m lucky! I tend to work for an hour or so most evenings (apart from the weekends).  I manage my time as effectively as I can, although inevitably it can be challenging at times.

How did you get your business idea?

It was through blogging about my direct selling business.  With the support and expertise of my husband who has his own digital media business I was able to drive traffic to my blog and realised the potential of my website.  I wanted to create a personal site for mums like me that would have useful resources and be affordable for small businesses to advertise on.

What were your challenges and how did you overcome them?

It was difficult to come up with a proper concept of what I wanted to achieve.  It has been a gradual learning curve and I although I do have an aim, I am also ‘going with the flow’ to some extent.  I am constantly thinking of ideas for Work For Mums but not always having the time to put them into practice.  Slowly but surely is my new motto!

What training, information or advice did you need to get started?

It has been mainly self-taught although I have to thank my husband and my up-line in my direct selling business for giving me the motivation and know-how to succeed.

If you could give one piece of advice to a mum of a baby or toddler starting a business, what would it be?

Be persistent and enthusiastic.   Don’t let yourself fall at the first hurdle.  Remember the reason why you want the flexibility of running your own business, but don’t let it take overtake your life – enjoy your child/children as much as possible too.

Suzannah Butcher


Twitter: @workformums


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