Updated: Aug 2, 2022
Are you a working mom looking to turn your side hustle into a business? There is a big trend these days for moms to turn into 'Mompreneurs' and be able to leave their 9-5 jobs behind for entrepreneurship. If this is you, then here are some tips from someone in the same situation that you are in.
In April 2021, I started MillenialMom as a way to bring in some additional income from my writing. Now, I have books and printables for sale too in my shop. I have also expanded into writing on Medium and Substack.
There are many different types of work-from-home jobs that you can look into to do in your evenings and weekends that have the possibility of turning into a full time job.
What Kind of Side-Hustle is Right for You?
This will depend on what your hobbies, interests and job skills are, as well as where you would like to be in the future.
For many of us, the idea of entrepreneurship seems like a great way to free up our time for our kids, work a flexible schedule, and achieve financial independence.
However, before you start looking into options that may be right for you, you will want to carefully consider what you will need to achieve with your business before you actually leave your 9-5 job.
Transferrable skills are amazing. What are you good at? Are you crafty? Good at customer service? Bookkeeping? Taking care of kids?
There are many different types of businesses that you can start from home. Personally, I do online writing and affiliate marketing. You could also become a virtual assistant, life coach, start an Etsy shop, or an in-home daycare. Before you decide what is a good fit for you, you will want to carefully look into the requirements of starting a new business where you live.
Do you need a business license? Business plan? Special licensing or certifications?
For example, to become a life coach or child care provider, you will need to take some courses to learn the ins and outs of the field. You will want to look into the pricing on these classes, as well as how long it will take to get a certification.
These are just a few examples, there are many other types of home businesses that you could start as well. Let me know in the comments if there are specific types of businesses that interest you, and I can write more about them in a future article.
Making a Business Plan
With any kind of business that you decide to start, it is a good idea to start with a business plan. This way, you can clearly outline your goals, the steps you need to get started, any start-up costs, and a clear picture of what type of goods or services you plan to provide.
When I started MillenialMom, I wrote all of this up in a notebook that I keep on my desk. I am constantly revising and expanding my goals on what I want to accomplish with my writing.
Years ago, I also used to own a bar. For an in-person business, there are a lot more legal requirements than there are for an online business.
Your business plan can be formal or informal. Depending on what type of business you plan to have, you may need to file a business plan with your city or town so that anyone who is interested in using your services can be well informed. If you need to make a formal business plan, you may want to consult with legal council at some point along your journey.
You can make your business plan using a template from Law Depot, you will just want to make sure that it is compliant with your local regulations. You can also get several free business plan templates from Smartsheet, which are tailored to different types of businesses.
If you want to take a less formal approach to writing your business plan, you can write in a notebook or Google Doc that you can refer to regularly. You will want to be sure to outline your goals, and a description of what services you will provide. You may also want to write about what your ideal client looks like, so that you can tailor your services appropriately.
Once you have a plan in place, look for places to showcase your services either online or in the community. You will want to have a social media presence, and possibly a website. If you are selling tangible goods, there are many online marketplaces. This is true for services as well. You can sell freelance services on websites like Upwork or Fiverr.
Then, dedicate a certain amount of time per day that you will work on your new business. It helps if you can work at the same time every day, for at least 1-2 hours in the beginning. Then, you can gradually increase the time that you spend working on your business.
It is also helpful to have a dedicated workspace, like a desk or office, so that all of your materials don't get lost or misplaced. Having a dedicated workspace also lets your partner and kids know that, when mom is sitting at her desk, that means mom is working. My daughter knows that when I am on my laptop, I am probably working on my "writing job."
Once you start to work at your new business, there will be a lot to learn. There are tons of free videos on YouTube about different types of entrepreneurship. You can also do research on Pinterest. There is a lot of great free information available online about starting your own business.
There are also many ebooks and courses available if you want to invest a little bit of money on your new endeavor. Just make sure that when you are buying a book or course, you research the seller to make sure that they are reputable. You can find great books on sites like Amazon or Barns and Noble, and you can get advice from online forums for entrepreneurs on Facebook too.
Networking with other "Mompreneurs" is a great way to learn tricks of the trade, and make some supportive friends. I have met some great ladies on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Medium that have become my community of fellow writers. If you use the #mompreneur on any of your social channels, you can connect with other mom entrepreneurs like yourself, and find your tribe.
But I'm Too Busy!
If you feel like you are too busy to start something new, that is OK, all of us as moms wear about 1000 hats at any given moment.
Look for a time in your schedule where you can block out an hour a day to work on your new business venture. You can start by using this time to research the job that you want to do, writing your business plan, and setting up your social networks.
It is important to involve your partner in the process too, as they may need to step up and take over some of the household duties for a while so you have time to get your business off the ground in addition to your 9-5.
Make time where you can.
Maybe, you can work for an hour in the morning, at your lunch break, or at night when the kids are in bed or in the bathtub.
Get creative with your scheduling! Look for areas in your day that you are doing things that are wasting time, like scrolling through Instagram. Take that time instead to invest into yourself and your future, because your own business really is an investment. Time is one of the biggest costs that you will pay at the beginning.
Most new businesses take at least a year to get off the ground. And unless you are one of the lucky ones that is super successful right off the bat, it will realistically take 2-5 years before your business will be able to turn into a full time gig.
Remember before I told you that I owned a bar? Even with that responsibility, I was still working a 9-5 job for the first two years until the business started to be profitable and self-sustaining.
Don't be disappointed if you aren't rich in the first five minutes, that just isn't realistic (no matter what you see on Instagram!) and if you go into this with unrealistic expectations, you are likely to end up hurt and disappointed.
Being self employed is great because of the flexibility that it gives you, but it is also a ton of work.
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I wish you all the best in your entrepreneur journey! Let me know in the comments what other topics that you would like me to cover in the future!
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