Six Steps to Juggling Kids and a Successful Business
Running a multi-million dollar company with little ones ain’t easy. But I’m learning some super powerful lessons around boundaries, goal setting and negotiation ;-)
I really try to avoid a lot of stress (including stressful people and situations). I like my life to be just so. As simple and relaxing as possible!
But motherhood can throw a few wild cards. I don’t have so much control over my daily life with three kids around, who each have big personalities, and of course, their own needs and unique way of being in the world.
Because my business is extremely important to me, I worked out a plan to baby-proof it when I first got pregnant seven years ago. I needed to create a lean, self-sufficient business that could run itself a bit better for a few years while I popped out some little Duffield-Thomas babies!
Up until my eldest was born, my business still relied very much on me to crank everything and keep it rolling.
I needed to put in some practices when I first got pregnant to ensure that the ball kept rolling. Here’s how I did it!
The Six Secrets to Baby-Proofing your Business
1) Simplify everything!
2) Automate your revenue-generating activities
3) Improve your boundaries
4) Streamline content production
5) Automate your marketing
6) Work on your money mindset
That can feel like a lot but I promise, if you run through them step by step you’ll have a leaner business that is way easier to run and will probably generate way more income for you too!
So, here are my tips on baby-proofing your business…
I want to help you make sure that the first six months with a baby are as stress-free as possible from a business and financial perspective. Of course, you can’t control what life with a baby will be like, but you can totally control how much prep work you do!
I want to help you spend as much time with your new baby as possible without feeling obligated over day-to-day business things. And, of course, the flexibility to shift in between if possible.
1) Simplify, simplify, simplify
When Mark and I decided we wanted to have kids, I knew that I needed to be brutal and cut back pretty much ALL of the random side projects and really focus on 1-2 things.
That was difficult for me because I had an ego around my multi-tasking ability. I could do ALL OF MY PROJECTS – YOU CAN’T MAKE ME GIVE UP ANY OF THEM.
I cut one project after another, which was tough. Some projects had cost thousands of dollars to create, but put simply – they weren’t in my zone of genius.
I decided that I was going to focus purely on a money message. The other spin-offs could wait (or, honestly, someone else could do them much better than me). I don’t have to be good at everything!
Takeaway: One focus, one message is so much better from an energetic point of view. It also helps your audience know exactly what to expect from you and helps them get really aligned with your message.
2) Automate revenue-generating activities
I’ve seen a lot of new mamas successfully juggle a baby and a full client load, but I just didn’t want to. I knew it would have stressed me out too much. I wanted to find a better way to make money.
Luckily, I already had a proven course that I knew could work really well as a standalone home study course. I relaunched my Money Bootcamp during my first pregnancy.
Money Bootcamp is my primary product. Through this course thousands of entrepreneurs have been guided and supported to create financial freedom for themselves and their families. It’s been awesome to watch! Because it’s a completely virtual program, it doesn’t take any of my personal time. This way, I know that if I don’t feel like working, my income isn’t going to suffer!
3) Improve your boundaries
In my first year of business (read all about it here!), I said yes to everything.
Ten years later, I’m extremely picky about how I spend my time.
I had to learn how to say no (thank you!) and work on my boundaries around my time and energy.
Here are some things I started saying no to free up more time
- Catch-ups with people I didn’t personally know
- Interviews with people with an audience of less than 5000
- Being involved in most telesummits
- Being an “expert” in anything other than money (yes, I can tell you how to publish a book/find a soul mate/manifest a baby, but it’s not in my zone of genius)
- Answering random questions over email
- Answering emails full stop
My response is really simple - I just say that it’s not my focus right now. I have time to do all those things, but I don’t want to handle the mental clutter.
Of course, when you have a baby, you literally don’t have the time to get involved in other stuff. I recommend being even more brutal with your time boundaries. Protect your energy, mama!
I’ve noticed that mama-preneurs tend to become super productive because they have much less time to faff around on time-wasting activities!
4) Streamline content production
When the babies came along, I had to get smarter about producing content. I used to sit down and write a loooong article every week, sometimes without thought of what or why I was writing.
That had to change!
Now I batch social media content and use tools to create regular and recurring updates.
One of my team members will come up with 100 quotes to drip feed out, create a whole bunch of shareable images in one go and create a bunch of relevant and interesting links we want to share.
I also batch my filming and drip-feed my videos out over the coming months.
So yeah, I used my team and the power of tech to make creating content waaaaay easier and less time-consuming.
5) Automate your marketing
When I got pregnant, I worked with a copywriter to create an automated marketing strategy that didn’t rely on creating new content all the time.
It means that when a new person joins my list, they’ll get regular and automated content for about three months. They’ll get a chance to see some of my most popular posts, get notifications of all my various freebies and access to exclusive resources.
This means that new people who join my list aren’t greeted with a big fat silence or, worse – getting some kind of hastily written crap because I’m too busy.
It’s important to keep growing your list, even when you don’t have anything new to sell.
5) Get as much help as you can
This is not one of those posts where I pretend to do it all myself or pretend that I have everything worked out. Running a business is hard, and so is having a relationship. Having a baby and parenting is even harder and a lot of days it gets on top of me.
I would not be able to do business or parenting without a LOT of help. I am very privileged. I am well, able and have a supportive partner. In fact Mark is super involved in both the business and as a dad, and we spend a lot of time with our kids because of the flexibility our business gives us.
But I also have my mum helping some days, a nanny for the kids, childcare, a housekeeper and cleaners. I am fortunate enough to be able to pay to make things happen around the house so I can spend time in my business and family.
I wrote about all of the help I have and the mindset challenges that come up around this in this article.
I’ve found that the best way to grow a business, raise kids, or both is with as much support as you can. There’s no medal for doing everything yourself, and you deserve support to pursue your life and business goals.
6) Work on your money mindset
Of course, you can do all the things but still have fears around scarcity and lack.
You might worry you'll never be able to succeed, let alone thrive as an entrepreneur.
The best advice I can give is to work on your money mindset.
I went into parenthood with a firm mantra "babies bring abundance", because one of my mentors Jen Cudmore told me "babies are born with a loaf of bread under each arm".
Babies bring abundance because you have to be creative and resourceful with your time, energy and limited space.
Babies bring abundance because they will force you to be a better CEO - like outsourcing, delegating, automating and systemizing your business (stuff you should be doing anyway!)
Babies bring abundance because it's a pretty hard deadline!
So, if you're prepping for your first baby or your next - babies bring abundance, I promise!
Some encouragement for you...
I wanted to share with you some advice from other mamas in business
The best thing I ever did to baby-proof my business was to transform my coaching into products so I no longer had to work hours for money.
Once you have a baby, schedules go to shit. It can be so hard to get the space, time and schedule you need to continue 1-1 work. If you’ve got programs you can sell that don’t need your presence, you’re bonza!
Another thing – I was honestly so terrified when I had my baby that my business would fail. But it didn’t – I still doubled in size that year, and have kept doubling or tripling ever since that – we’re now up to a 3/4 of a million dollar a year business.
I’ve consciously crafted my life to spend as much time with my daughter and husband as possible, while still sharing the miracles that are inside me. It really IS possible and doable when you love what you do and stay totally committed to your vision!
Leonie Dawson | www.LeonieDawson.com
The biggest thing for me as a new mother was giving myself time to not only heal physically but to adjust emotionally.
Even though I have the support of wonderful family and friends, I had to give MYSELF permission to slow down which didn’t happen easily.
Having a baby forces you to slow down in business, so be kind to yourself and trust that everything you have done to prepare for this beautiful moment will keep you in good stead until you are ready to get back into it.
Jade McKenzie | www.EventHead.com.au
When you work from home with a baby or have businesses or studying online, there are still invoices to process, emails to answer, study or work to do.
Obviously you have to be extremely sacred with your time right now.
You can not afford to faff about and work randomly. On the contrary your brain is not likely to be firing at its highest productivity capacity. So I suggest going extremely easy on yourself. Only do what you have to do.
Minimum Effective Dose!
Jana Kingsford | www.mumsjugglingact.com
I created a financial cushion so I could really enjoy my maternity leave by putting money aside in the lead up to the birth. Money that I would normally have reinvested in the business.
I paid for help: I didn’t have grandparent support close by so when my daughter was 6 months old I paid a nanny to come a couple of days a week.
That kept my daughter close to me and still gave me the space to work in the early days.
Samantha Nolan Smith | www.SamanthaNolanSmith.com
Be easy on yourself and go with the flow. Your wellbeing is THE most important thing. So set up support systems beforehand so you can maintain it.
Put in place a support network of family, friends, GP, therapist before the birth and connect with new mothers after so you can stay connected and ward off Postnatal depression.
Jane Copeland | www.CopingWithJane.com and author of Boardroom To Baby
You’ve got this, gorgeous! You can totally run a successful, profitable company alongside parenthood!
It’s your time, and you’re ready for the next step,
P.S. If you need more support on building a business with kids and want to be part of a community of other entrepreneurs doing the same, then check out my Money Bootcamp.
Honestly, there’s no better place to work on your mindset and business and be supported by other Queen Bees.
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