Most stay-at-home mothers establish home-based companies because they want to spend more time with their children. And I was no exception: I quit a wonderful corporate career to spend more time with my two children.
But then you put a lot of effort into your company, and it succeeds! Yes, you are receiving orders and earning money, but on the other hand, you are not spending as much time with your children. So, how do you manage your time? Do you still prioritize your children? Or do you go with the “just a minute, honey!” approach, hoping they can’t tell time?
It happened to me: I was working on an order for 150 gift baskets one day during my first Christmas season in company. It was exhausting labor, and the tension was palpable. The deadline was nearing, and I didn’t have time to even clean up the room.
There were product boxes everywhere, empty boxes everywhere, and gourmet food everywhere: a real catastrophe zone! Just then, my four-year-old daughter (now 11) approached me, her huge brown eyes welling up with tears: “Mommy, I’m bored and lonely… Can we have a little fun?” What could I possibly do? I was alone at home with her, and if I stopped playing, I wouldn’t be able to complete my order on time.
So, on the spur of the moment, I devised a strategy for playing with her while also working. And I had the bright notion of constructing her an office directly next to mine out of used/damaged boxes. She was overjoyed! And SHE was the one who did all of the work! I directed her to the boxes and made space for her near my desk. She made a desk, improvised a chair, and even had merchandise for sale in her shop.
With everything in place, I was able to work uninterrupted for the most of the time. She enjoyed observing and imitating me: when I picked up the phone to speak with a client, she took up her dummy phone. She created her own basket when I needed one. She took up a pencil and calculated her own pricing as I was calculating the costs for my baskets.
Her workplace changed over time, and the old, broken boxes were replaced with real wooden drawers. Inventory that I was unable to sell became part of her store’s inventory. She even acquired a sofa and an adding machine. Her workplace is now her favorite place to play. And it’s no longer simply an office: it’s a whole building filled with various businesses. She owns a restaurant, a spa, a bookstore, and a toy shop.
The business has helped her in a variety of ways:
– she learnt about inventory management and ordering
– she acquired phone etiquette
– she studied addition and subtraction
– she gained organizational skills
– she learned to be creative (little bits and pieces of ribbon, irregular baskets, empty containers have become great assets to her business)
Could YOU be utilizing your company to educate your children the fundamentals of business while having fun? I’m certain you could. Simply take some time to consider how your circumstance may be utilized to grow business seeds in your kid.