Mums and Dads are successfully leaving their day-time job, where they were
- working for someone else,
- usually unsociable hours
- and often bringing work home with them.
They set up their own business or find opportunities which enable them to work from home. Mums and dads aren’t just working from home, but often, replace their previous monthly income and earning over and above what they used to make.
Working from home isn’t just about a job. It is about the lifestyle on offer. Being a work from home parent means you can be present in your children’s day to day life.
You can take them to school and be there when they finish.
You can attend sports days and school plays.
For younger children, you are able to take them on days out, creating new memories with them.
It means you no longer have to send your children to nursery every day. You don’t need to book your kids into every after school club and be the last parent to pick them up. You don’t have to call in favours from family members during the school holidays.
Working from home can provide your family with a completely different lifestyle, one in which you are present and a part of. Children don’t remember money, or their birthday present from when they were 5. But they do remember the time you built a jigsaw with them or taught them how to ride a bike. They remember the holiday to Disney or that day trip to the Safari park.
This is why I created this feature on my blog, Success Stories. So many mums and dads want to work from home, but they just don’t know how or what opportunities are available to them. I write in detail within my core topics about how to successfully:
But there aren’t just 3 opportunities available to work from home. There are 1000s! Success Stories is designed to share the stories of other mums and dads, who have already made the brave leap to working from home. They come from all walks of life, backgrounds and industries. Through sharing their stories, I hope to inspire and support other mums and dads of the countless opportunities open to you in order to work from home and be present with your children.
This month, our success stories feature an incredible mum of two who I have the pleasure of working alongside. She left a retail job, in order to work from home around her daughters. Now, she runs a successful Virtual Assistant business whilst her girls attend school, choosing her hours to suit her family, doing something she loves whilst supporting other mums in business.
Welcome to our Success Stories, Jo. Can you tell our audience about yourself and your background?
Hi, I’m Jo. I have been married for nearly 17 years, we have two amazing girls who are 7 and almost 5. Before having children I worked in retail as an assistant manager. Long and unsociable hours, minimal pay and although I am thankful for the confidence the management experience gave me, it wasn’t something I wanted to go back to after our eldest was born. I was blessed enough that I could stay off work for a few years, but then as our youngest approached school age, I felt I wanted to do something more, and be able to help my husband support our family financially. The thought of going back into a job with set hours filled me with dread though, plus childcare just seemed totally unaffordable.
What is it that inspired you to work from home?
I had graduated from university with a degree in creative writing in 2003. I have always been creative, designing stuff on my computer for personal use, or friends, family and my church. I started doing a bit of work for another Mum at school who has her own language school, just a few hours a week. I really loved how I could fit it around my family.
Last year I attended a Mums Enterprise Roadshow in Manchester with my client and learned about VA’s – Virtual Assistants. I realised it was what I had been doing for almost a year for her, I just hadn’t given myself a title. So I gave my business a name and a brand plus a website, and I started advertising, connecting and networking.
How has this impacted upon yours and your families life?
I now have the privilege of supporting a number of other mums in business with design (including websites, logos, fliers etc.), content (for blogs, web, publication & social media) plus general admin. It’s absolutely amazing that I get to do this, every day, being on the school run, working 9-3 before I get to be there for my kids again. I can be flexible and only take on the work that I feel is going to work for our family, and for me, plus I don’t miss out on school events like assemblies and sports day. It’s just incredible.
What do you know now which you wish you knew before?
When I started, I thought that to promote my business I constantly had to push, push, push it at everyone around me, but I have now learnt that securing clients is much more about the relationship. Networking is key, whether in person or just online via social media groups.
Sometimes, it can be overwhelming to know where to start when you want to work from home. Can you provide our audience with your top tip?
My top tip for anyone wanting to work from home is to always remember you call the shots. It’s your business, and you must remember why you started it in the first place. If your business is taking over every second of your life, and although you’re there in body to pick up your kids etc. your face is always in your phone or laptop, try and put a strict schedule in place. I am very disciplined about only working 9-3 because being at home, the temptation is always there. I just remind myself that I can enjoy myself later, and now I will be the most productive than when the kids are around!
Do you have a favourite resource, book or tool you think our readers would benefit from?
One of the most amazing “resources” I have found for my business has been joining the Mums in Business Association on Facebook. It has opened up a whole new world of networking opportunities and clients and it really helped me to find my niche.
What are your ambitions for the future?
As my children get older, I would love to expand my hours and my business, but always keep it family-friendly. Plus the added bonus is, if what you do is virtual, you can literally move anywhere in the world and still have clients!
What is your one guilty pleasure that working from home enables you to do?
Ooh… an interesting one! I do eat chocolate a lot plus I generally live in jeans and hoodies and my unicorn slippers.
Thank you very much, Jo, for your time and sharing your story with my audience.
I am actually one of Jo’s clients and she has helped my business no end. No task is out of the question or too much of a challenge for her. She has helped me to take back more time, in order to run this blog more efficiently for my audience.
I cannot recommend Jo and her VA services enough. If you want to get in touch with Jo or find out more about what she can offer your business, you can connect with her through the following links: