But for others, when they’re holding their baby in their arms, they just know that things have changed forever and the thought of returning to work fills them with dread.
This is why using your maternity leave is a great opportunity to evaluate your career and decide what you want to do after your leave ends – return to your job, become a stay at home mum or start your own business.
The most important thing to remember though is that you are doing what’s right for you and your family so please don’t feel like you have to follow ‘the rules’.
If you do decide to take the plunge and start your own business, follow these 6 simple steps and it will make the transition a lot easier for you and your family:
1. Decide on your business idea
Let me be very clear from the start. Running a business is hard work and definitely NOT a get rich quick scheme – if that’s what you’re after, you need to go elsewhere!
That’s why it’s really important to choose something that you’re going to enjoy doing a lot of.
There are lots of business opportunities out there, whether you are selling your own products or services, or buying into a franchise or MLM business, you will find something that is a fit for your skills, experience and goals.
2. Get clear on the type of client you want to work with
You will spend a lot of time, and money if you’re not careful, on marketing so you need to make sure that what you do works.
This is where getting clear on who your ideal client is key and is something that you must take the time to do.
Really get to know the type of person you want to buy your product or service, this makes marketing so much easier. By focusing on one type of person (instead of everyone), you can tailor all your marketing materials to speak to only those people – this is what will get results.
3. Stand out from the crowd
The sign of a good product or service is if there’s already some competition, this means that people are already buying what you’re offering from competitors.
It is your job to make sure that you stand out from all your competitors in the eyes of your target market so that you are the only choice they should be making when they want to buy your product or service.
Make sure that you inject your personality into your marketing as we all buy from people so be yourself as that will attract people to do business with you.
4. Speak your customers language
If you’ve taken the time to really get to know your ideal customers, you should have discovered what their issues are and why they’d want to buy your product or service.
What is keeping them up at night, what are they prepared to pay anything to solve?
Knowing this can help you to create a marketing message that will show them that your product or service is the perfect solution they need.
5. Manage your time
As a busy mum, we only have a limited time available to work on the business so you need to get focused so that you get all the important work done – instead of chatting to friends on Facebook.
Set up a schedule so that you know exactly what time you have available to work on the business and when you will be with your family – a great visual for everyone in the house to know when mummy is working so that there aren’t any interruptions.
Talk to your partner and get them on board to help you out – can they do some of the housework, help out with the kids more, do the cooking? Anything that can free up your time to focus on the business.
Take the time to plan out what work you need to complete for the week so that you can get straight to work as soon as you’re in work mode – instead of wasting valuable time wondering what you should be doing.
6. Plan for success
Map out your goals for your business as well as the tasks you need to do to achieve that goal. You then need to break those tasks down to 90 day chunks as this timescale is perfect to make you focus on what is important.
These tasks can be included on your weekly planning to make sure that you get them done and stay focused on achieving your goals.
If you’re struggling trying to fit everything in, ask yourself if the task to do on your list will move you one step closer to your goal. If the answer is no, it can wait until a later date and you need to focus on something else that does move you closer to your goal.
There are lots of things to start and market a successful family friendly business but these are the 6 essential things you should focus on first whilst you’re still on maternity leave.
About the author
Emma Walker is the founder of The Mumpreneur’s Mentor and a busy mum of 2 little divas. As a mums in business coach, she works with mums who want to start and market their own successful family friendly business as well as mums already in business who want to take their business to the next level without sacrificing time with their family.
Learn her ‘6 Success Secrets to Running a Family Friendly Business’ in a free training session. Get the details and register now at www.MumpreneurSuccess.com