Can You Be A Good Mum And A Good Franchisee?
Often being a working mum is a constant cycle of guilt. If you’re at work, you feel guilty for not spending time with the kids. When you’re at home, you feel guilty for not being in work. Add being a business owner into this equation and it just magnifies the guilt level.
Choosing to become a franchisee as a mum means that you're likely to face challenges on your journey to business ownership. It will be a struggle at times to balance work and family life, and while you're running around trying to achieve this, it's easy to forget you and your needs.
But, however tough it gets at times, you'll also benefit from the flexibility and freedom that comes with franchising. Not only will you get a massive sense of job satisfaction, but your kids will have a role model to look up to; a strong, determined woman who works hard to run her own business as well as care for her family.
So, if you think you have what it takes to become a franchisee while raising a family, here are five tips to help you be a fantastic mum as well as a tremendous franchisee.
1. Set clear boundaries
This is a fundamental rule for all home-based franchise businesses to adhere to. If you work from the family home, you need to make it very clear when you’re working and when you’re not. This is much easier to achieve if you have a physical space that you work from. Not many people have the luxury of having separate office space, but even if you have a desk in the corner of the dining room, it’s better than working from the kitchen worktop.
To efficiently run a home-based franchise, it’s worth also considering developing a system which lets your loved ones know what your work plans are. Create a schedule which shows when meetings or calls are taking place, or just when quiet time is needed. You can't blame your kids for interrupting an essential call if they didn't even know it was taking place.
When you have your weekly schedule, you can stick a paper copy on the fridge, or for the digitally minded families, you can share your calendar so that it can be viewed from tablets, smartphones or computers.
2. Be more efficient
There are many affordable franchises available for investment which can also be managed on a part-time basis. This may be an excellent option for mums with children of school age as the business can be operated during school hours. But to take full advantage of such an opportunity, you need to be strict with your time.
Working alone can bring many distractions, from browsing through social media while you're meant to be replying to emails, or pegging the washing out when you're supposed to be working on your marketing plan. It can be hard to stay on track, but the key to achieving a healthy work/life balance is to be productive during the time you've assigned to work so that you can dedicate 100% of your time to the family when you finish for the day without feeling guilty.
3. Separate your roles
If you’re not efficient with your time, it can be easy to blur the lines between your work and personal life. Answering emails in a restaurant on a family night out or ordering birthday presents online when you’re meant to be working leads to confusion, stress and the guilt starts to rear its head again. Be a franchisee when you’re at work and then you can be the mum you want to be when you’re at home.
It's also essential to emotionally separate the roles too. If your franchise location is away from your home, you have the commute to be able to switch from business mode to mum mode. But, if you run a home-based franchise, it may not be this easy.
Closing the laptop and rushing straight to bath the children doesn't give you the downtime you need. You won't need long, but just taking 15 minutes to gather your thoughts, reflect on the day and plan for the following day. This will enable you to transition from one role to another with a clear head.
4. Make your business a family affair.
You may have chosen an affordable franchise that you can run around your family commitments so that you could achieve financial independence. This was undoubtedly a tough and brave decision to make, so you should make sure that your family get to see how you run your business and share with them the reasons why you’re doing it.
Don’t forget to celebrate your successes with your loved ones too. They will have supported you through the tough times, so it’s only fair that they get to help you enjoy the good times as well.
5. Don't neglect yourself.
The last, and possibly the hardest tip to take on board, is to ensure that you make some time for yourself. When you become a franchisee, you dedicate so much time and effort into making your business a success, and any remaining time is devoted to the family.
It can be hard, but investing time in looking after your wellbeing, is like investing in your franchise. If you become ill or experience burnout due to the stresses and strains of being your own boss, then your chances of running a profitable franchise are slim.
Book yourself into the local spa for a massage, get your hair done, go to the gym or read a book. Do whatever you need to do to relax every now and again. You don't have to be extravagant, but the importance of taking breaks has been proven to reduce the stress levels of small business owners.
Your mind, your body, your business and your family will thank you for taking a break. Not only will you feel more refreshed and invigorated, but you’ll be a more attentive mother and a more productive franchisee.
Chances are you’re already successfully running a business and being the best mum, but sometimes it can be easy to compare ourselves to others and think that we’re not doing as well as we could. Don’t be harsh on yourself. With advice from the franchisor, guidance from other franchisees and the love and support of your family, you’ll be surprised at just how much you can achieve.
The Editorial Team, Point Franchise ©
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