Life as a working mom is always a busy balance between chaos, kiddos, work and play. Can you imagine running your own small business (that turns out to be not so small!) as a mom of 11 kids? Suddenly feel like your life is a bit more manageable? Me too! I’m thrilled to introduce you to Tami, of Mom of 11 Kids. She has a fabulous new line of all-natural, made in the USA products made just for you and your littles, and her life and business are just what I’m loving on when it comes to Modern Femme Movement. Say hello to Tami! If she can do it, so can you!
- A Little More About Tami’s Business Dream
In 2006, Tami met her second husband, the owner of a company called Aidance Scientific, which develops therapeutic skincare solutions for hundreds of conditions. Having long been a proponent for health, wellness and all-natural ingredients, Tami was impressed by their core technology and knew they could formulate products to specifically support busy moms and their families. After re-marrying and settling into life as a mom of 11 kids, Tami was able to make her dream a reality.
In December 2014, in the midst of working with a research and development team on the products, Tami decided to launch Mom of 11 Kids as an online community. “When we reached 10,000 followers within a few months, we knew we found a special way to connect with moms.” The product line and a new website were officially introduced in August 2015. Want to hear it straight from Tami? Watch the video on her “Our Story” page!
- Why Tami is a Working Mom Just Like You!
The greatest challenge Tami faces being at the helm of Mom of 11 Kids is that she is actually a mom to 11 kids!
She is also honest about her secret weapon – she doesn’t have one! “There’s nothing magical. I don’t live by a planner. I’m flexible because I have to be.” Between school activities, doctor appointments, and business meetings, Tami can’t always keeps to commitments. Luckily her family and friends understand that, and she relies heavily on that support system. “There’s this notion that we feel we have to do it all. It takes a village and moms can’t be shy about asking for help.”
Of finding a balance between work and family, she says, “It’s not easy. You can’t do everything well all the time. Sometimes I ask – what was I thinking? But I love being a working mom. I especially enjoy the camaraderie and the intelligent conversations.”
One way Tami unwinds is by listening to audio books during her commute. “From intellectual reads to guilty pleasures, it’s a great way to unwind and multi-task.”
- Tami’s Advice for Those Tough Moments of Overwhelm
When it comes to feeling overwhelmed, her advice is “to do one productive task, whether it’s feeding your family an easy meal, making a batch of cookies, or organizing the shoes in the foyer. Something you can do that makes you feel like you have control over your life. A tangible win.”
How to Organize Hand-Me-Down Clothes – Guest Blogger: Brittany Bullen
Brittany lives with her husband and three sons in Utah. She is a playwright, composer, actress, singer, thrift shop lover, Mormon and aspiring vegan. She is the founder of the International Bloggers Association, is a member of the Dramatists Guild, the Association for Contextual Behavioral Science and the Cognitive Behavioral Society (’cause why not). Brittany has a B.A. in English-Writing from Denison University and has an imaginary Ph.d. in Googling stuff she wants to know. You can keep up with her at BrittanyBullen.com.
Going After The Job You Really Want
In the years that my children were in grade school, I enjoyed getting to know the support people in their buildings – the custodial staff, the secretaries, the para-professionals – and it never ceased to amaze me how the two latter groups consisted, in large part, of former lawyers, accountants, and business executives.
Similarly, many of the women stacking shelves at our local Gap store and manning the counter at the spin and barre studios were former accomplished professionals, too.
The pull of a low-stress job and a school-hours or flexible schedule must be strong, I used to assume.
But I was wrong.
True, working the same hours as your children is convenient, and having a job that you don’t ‘take home’ with you at night and over weekends, has its advantages. However, I learned through two decades of coaching and placing these women that it wasn’t the schedule or the workload that drew them to these positions. It was the safety.
Most of the aspiring women-returners I’ve met in the last 20+ years arrived at my office already defeated. When, after having a child, they were faced with the “all or nothing” choice to work 60 hours a week, or quit and stay home, they chose the latter, leaving behind careers that they loved and becoming part of the female brain drain that plagued (and still plagues) the U.S. Then, when they’re ready to opt back into the workplace, résumé gaps and related biases have made it difficult for these women to land.
By the time they come to me – a kindred spirit, having been one of them myself – they are discouraged and fully expect rejection as ‘punishment’ for taking years off to raise their children. Which, of course, is ludicrous, and I get right to work helping them erase that narrative from their heads.
But in the heads of the ones who don’t come to me, that narrative is on a continuous loop. Many of them are now helping our kids in the classroom and signing us in to spin class because they settled for ‘safer’ jobs.
A 2015 Women in the Workplace study conducted by LeanIn.Org and management consulting firm McKinsey found that 43% of leadership-track women derail themselves for child rearing at some point; 90% of them with the intention of returning. These women should be assuming leadership roles, growing companies’ bottom lines, and changing workplace culture, yet many are stuck. They don’t know how to properly prepare for their career re-launches and they get quickly discouraged by early rejections.
It doesn’t have to be this way.
Women-returners are unquestionably employable. Employers my partners and I polled consider them the best hiring demographic. I’ve personally witnessed hundreds – probably over 1,000 – of them find fulfilling work in my small corner of the world (Connecticut).
Some things make it easier, of course, like keeping up with industry trends, staying current with certifications and licensure, and maintaining relationships with old clients and co-workers. But even women with significant skill deficiencies and long-lapsed credentials can return to work successfully if they have these five things:
1 – realistic expectations based on thorough research and honest self-assessment
2 – a compelling résumé that meaningfully accounts for her opt-out years
3 – a commitment to remediating skill gaps on the job or through inexpensive means like online classes or local continuing education courses
4 – aggressive (not a popular word among women, but spot-on here) networking to get in front of connectors and hiring managers
5 – flexibility and the willingness to consider unconventional offerings like temporary projects or low-paying internships as a way to get a foot in the door.
The economy is improving. The labor market is tight. The voluntary quit rate is at a 17-year high. Employers are competing to hire good people. And, these days, you don’t have to be perfect to be ‘good people’.
Your gapped résumé, your ‘not entirely perfect’ experience, your application that meets only 60% of the job criteria, are all plenty good enough now.
So, if you are wistful for more challenge (and money) than your current job can provide; if you want to get back on the corporate track, but are playing it safe working for minimum wage; listen up. Your time at home was valuable; its impact will be long-lasting, but you have an opportunity now to take advantage of favorable economic timing and get back to the work that you really want to do. Go for it.
FREE Online Conference Alert! A Don’t Miss Opp for Small Biz Owners
I made the announcement last week to mark your calendars for May 12-14, 2016 for Modern Femme Movement (Seriously, do NOT miss this!!). More coming on that front (Stay tuned!), and a teeny, tiny reminder that subscribers to this blog (Fill me out over there!! —–>) and members of the Facebook community will get the first shot at early registration. I have a few other surprises in the works, but I wanted to take a quick moment to share a fabulous free online conference opportunity for busy women.
Next week, Fit, Focused & Effective: Health Summit for Busy Women, will kick off with an honest look from top women in health, wellness, and fitness as we all aim for a more balanced, fulfilled life. This free online conference is packed with insight, wisdom and takeaways from 20 of the busiest women on this planet! And I’m thrilled to say, quite honored actually, that I’m included in this bunch of fabulous ladies.
Bryn from coachbryn.com interviewed me several weeks ago for this summit, and I can’t wait for my own podcast to run for a 48 hour stretch beginning May 29. We may have run down a few rabbit trails talking about my tattoos and why they are therapy for me, and I finish off with the one question you should be asking yourself every, single day as a small business owner and busy working woman.
There are very few free online conference opportunities that offer such rich insight to attendees. These ladies are not “phoning it in.” There is a real heart passion for women finding peace and contentment in good health, good business and great family. The podcasts allow you the flexibility to tune in when is best for you. I hope you’ll join us!