Becoming a parent is one of the most transformative experiences a person can have. Parenting and entrepreneurship changes everything, from your daily routine to your priorities and goals. As a mother and an entrepreneur, I’ve found that the skills and qualities I developed as a parent have been invaluable in my business journey. In this blog post, I’ll explore the surprising ways parenthood prepared me for entrepreneurship and how you can use these skills to build a successful business.
1. Time Management
As a parent, you quickly learn the art of time management. You have to “juggle” multiple responsibilities. From feeding and changing diapers to managing school schedules and extracurricular activities. The same skills apply to entrepreneurship, where time is one of your most valuable resources. Whether it’s meeting deadlines, managing multiple projects, or balancing work and personal life, time management is essential for success. As a parent, you already have the foundation for this skill, so use it to your advantage in your business.
To help you, are some time management tips:
Prioritize your tasks. Identify the most important tasks for your business and tackle them first. This will ensure that you’re making progress on the things that matter most.
Create a schedule. Having a schedule can help you stay organized and ensure that you’re using your time effectively. Use a calendar or planner to block out time for specific tasks, meetings, and deadlines.
Avoid multitasking. While it might seem like multitasking is the best way to get things done quickly, it can actually be counterproductive. Instead, focus on one task at a time and give it your full attention.
Delegate when possible. As a parent, you’re used to delegating tasks to others (such as your spouse or children). In your business, look for opportunities to delegate tasks to employees or freelancers. This can free up your time to focus on higher-level tasks.
Take breaks. It’s important to give yourself breaks throughout the day to recharge and avoid burnout. Take a walk, do some stretching, or just take a few minutes to meditate.
Parenting and entrepreneurship are unpredictable. No matter how much you plan, things don’t always go according to plan. This is where adaptability comes in. You learn to adjust on the fly, whether it’s dealing with a sudden illness or a change in routine. In entrepreneurship, adaptability is critical. Market conditions, customer needs, and industry trends can all shift unexpectedly. Being able to pivot and adjust your strategy is essential for success. As a parent, you’ve already developed this skill, so embrace it in your business.
Here are some tips:
- Embrace change. Instead of resisting change, try to embrace it. Recognize that change is a part of life and be open to new opportunities.
- Practice mindfulness. By practicing mindfulness, you can become more aware of your thoughts and emotions, which can help you stay present and flexible in the face of change.
- Stay informed. Stay up-to-date on industry trends and changes in the market. This can help you anticipate and prepare for changes in your business.
- Be willing to take risks. Sometimes, the most successful entrepreneurs are the ones who are willing to take risks and try new things. Don’t be afraid to experiment and take calculated risks.
- Build a diverse network. Surround yourself with people who have different backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives. This can help you gain new insights and ideas, and be better prepared to adapt to changes in your business.
- Stay flexible. Be willing to change your plans or strategies when necessary. Stay flexible and adaptable to new situations and challenges.
By practicing adaptability, you’ll be better equipped to navigate the ever-changing landscape of entrepreneurship. You’ll be able to pivot when necessary, take advantage of new opportunities, and stay ahead of the curve of managing your family.
3. Negotiation and Communication
As a parent, you quickly learn the art of negotiation and communication. Whether it’s negotiating with your child over bedtime or communicating effectively with teachers and caregivers, these skills are essential. In parenting and entrepreneurship, negotiation and communication are key components of building successful partnerships and relationships. From negotiating contracts to communicating with employees and customers, these skills are critical. As a parent, you’ve already honed these skills, so leverage them in your business.
Here are some tips on negotiation and communication:
- Practice active listening. When communicating with others, make sure to really listen to what they’re saying. Pay attention to their body language, ask clarifying questions, and avoid interrupting them.
- Be clear and concise. When conveying information or instructions, be as clear and concise as possible. Avoid using jargon or technical terms that others might not understand.
- Use nonverbal communication effectively. Your body language, tone of voice, and facial expressions can all convey meaning. Make sure your nonverbal cues are consistent with your words.
- Be empathetic. Try to see things from the other person’s perspective and acknowledge their feelings. This can help build rapport and trust.
- Practice conflict resolution. Conflict is inevitable in any relationship, so it’s important to know how to resolve it in a constructive way. Focus on finding a solution that works for everyone involved.
By developing strong communication skills, you’ll be able to build better relationships with your family, employees, and customers. This can lead to a more harmonious home life and a more successful business.
Parenting and entrepreneurship is challenging, and it can test your resilience. Whether it’s dealing with a sleepless night or a sick child, you learn to keep going, no matter what. This resilience is a valuable skill in entrepreneurship, where setbacks and failures are common. Building a business is hard, and it requires persistence and determination. As a parent, you’ve already developed these qualities, so use them to power through the tough times in your business.
Here are some tips:
- Embrace a growth mindset. A growth mindset means believing that you can learn and improve over time. When faced with challenges in your business or personal life, try to see them as opportunities for growth and learning.
- Practice self-care. Taking care of your physical and mental health is crucial for building resilience. Make sure to get enough sleep, exercise regularly, eat a healthy diet, and take breaks when you need them.
- Build a support network. Surround yourself with people who can provide emotional support and encouragement. This could include family, friends, colleagues, or a mentor.
- Find meaning in your work. When you’re passionate about your work and feel like you’re making a difference, it can be easier to weather the ups and downs. Take time to reflect on your values and how your work aligns with them.
- Practice mindfulness. Mindfulness can help you stay grounded and focused, even when things are stressful. Try incorporating mindfulness practices like meditation, deep breathing, or yoga into your daily routine.
By developing resilience, you’ll be better equipped to handle the challenges that come with being a parent and an entrepreneur. And, as a bonus, you’ll be setting a great example for your children, showing them how to overcome obstacles and thrive in the face of adversity.
Finally, parenting and entrepreneurship can unleash your creativity. From finding new ways to entertain your child to coming up with innovative solutions to parenting challenges, parenthood can spur creativity. In entrepreneurship, creativity is essential for solving problems, developing new products and services, and standing out in a crowded market. As a parent, you’ve already tapped into your creative side, so use it to your advantage in your business.
Here are some tips:
- Practice brainstorming. Set aside time to brainstorm new ideas and solutions to problems. Don’t worry about whether or not your ideas are practical or feasible – just focus on generating as many ideas as possible.
- Get inspired. Seek out inspiration from a variety of sources, such as books, articles, podcasts, and conferences. Attend networking events and connect with other entrepreneurs to learn from their experiences.
- Take breaks. Sometimes, the best ideas come when you step away from your work and take a break. Go for a walk, do something creative, or simply take some time to relax and recharge.
- Encourage creativity in your team. Encourage your team members to share their ideas and perspectives. Provide opportunities for brainstorming and collaboration.
- Challenge assumptions. Don’t be afraid to challenge assumptions and try new things. Sometimes, the best ideas come from questioning the status quo and exploring new possibilities.
- Embrace failure. Don’t be discouraged by failure – view it as an opportunity to learn and grow. Embracing failure can help you be more willing to take risks and try new things.
By practicing creativity, you’ll be able to come up with innovative solutions to problems, stand out from your competition, and adapt to new challenges. You’ll be able to think outside the box and find new opportunities for growth and success.
Parenting and entrepreneurship is a challenging, rewarding journey. While it may seem like these two roles are separate, the skills and qualities you develop as a parent can be invaluable in your business journey. From time management and adaptability to negotiation and communication, parenthood prepares you in surprising ways for entrepreneurship. By embracing these skills, you can build a successful business while being an awesome parent.
This video made me smile this week.