Mom Entrepreneurs and boss
Everyone who has a child knows that raising them involves a lot of learning, both for the parents and the children. The similarities between entrepreneurship and parenthood are many. Both are one of life’s great learning experiences.
We asked EO members who are mothers, “If parenthood is like entrepreneurship, what lessons have you inadvertently learned from your children?”
Here are six lessons they shared:
1. Ask precisely for what you want
The youngest child has a reputation for being determined. She always gets what she wants when she has an idea in her head. She has taught me to never contemplate and to think big. When she wants something, she is looking for a way to get it. I’m quite amazed that she has learned to make a request at such a young age and make it impossible for anyone to say no. Being raised by mom entrepreneurs, taught them to focus on their needs and formulate them in a way that gets them.
― Emilie Rosefield Atwood
2. You’re more adaptable than you think
As a born planner, I had not planned at all to start a business and have a baby at the same time. But it happened: My daughter was born in June 2015, my first gym in August 2015. After a quick two-week break, I started organizing staff meetings at home while breastfeeding and while breastfeeding and organizing the new baby’s routine. After opening the new gym, she was sleeping in her car seat under the reception desk. And this was throughout our workday, seven days a week. We were unprepared and had no plans.
“When I think back, I realize that the best things that happen in life are often the best things. My daughter is now eight years old, outgoing, happy, charming. I also learned that I and my daughter were more flexible than I thought.
― Amelia Grant
3. There’s value in acknowledging emotions
I am a young mother of two, manager of a content strategy company. Training in child development allowed me to learn and manage the emotions of my employees. My therapist once told me: “Your children don’t need a solution. But when they behave badly, they want you to recognize and hear their emotions. When I saw the difference it made in my children, I wanted to try it on adults.”
Whether with clients or employees, I think first of the speaker, I hear what he says: “Dan, I understand that you get frustrated when Jane doesn’t finish her reports on time.” or “Jeni, I heard you don’t get your appreciation when John doesn’t acknowledge all the hard work you’ve done on this account.”
Reading and understanding emotions are part of entrepreneurial skills. Whether at work or home. Once the person feels heard and recognized, you can take the next steps to resolve issues.
― Gloria Richard
4. Consider the value in alternative approaches
“My 13 years old son and I, have a completely different approach to life. That’s why I ask him why he wants to do certain things this way and not another way. After all, experience has nothing to do with how we approach things. And that doesn’t mean an adult has a better one than a child.
“For example, for a friend’s birthday, instead of our usual gift card, my son wanted to give cash. I immediately thought “That’s not classy…no.” But instead, I asked him why – and his answer was insightful. He explained that our gift would be inconsiderate if we give him a gift card from a specific store and doesn’t want anything from that store. And as for gift card, we’d have to pay a commission to purchase, which is a waste of money. His “why” made sense, so his friend got an envelope of money.
“Having a child in the house is a constant reminder that great ideas come from all around, and it helps keep me extra aware to ask “why” in the office”
― Nathalie Greenfield
5. Don’t limit yourself through self-talk
“When they reach a certain age, children begin to develop self-awareness and become conscious of their presence and actions. I first felt sad when I watched my oldest daughter becoming self-conscience and create a sort of self-limitation. Helping her regain her confidence has been a beautiful journey from a natural self-freedom to society-induced limitations, all self-created by life experiences.
“As her mom and biggest fan and “helper”, I’ve noticed that I, too, allow my self-talk to limit my dreams and business ambitions. I talk with my daughter about the struggles I face being entrepreneurship, which can be daunting. I tell her how I conquered the feeling that I am not decent. We all need to believe that we can do it—and then anything is possible.”
― Lisa Rose Atwood
6. Be fearless
“It’s impressive to see the belief that my two kids have that everything will be alright. They trust in others with bravery that makes me want to go back in time to recapture myself. They are willing to try anything: meeting people, trying new experiences…—they are incredibly adaptable to change.
“For mom entrepreneurs, trusting your instinct and taking opportunities is critical. My kids have helped me realize that somewhere along my professional journey, I’ve become more risk-averse and less willing to pivot readily to navigate professional and industry changes somewhere along my professional journey As I parent them, I continuously remind them and myself to fearless.
― Veronique James
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