Starting a business is a daunting task but starting a business and running a family at the same time may just sound like absolute madness! We were absolutely thrilled to have Justine Clarke and Carolyn Creswell as ambassadors for the MumInspired® grant program we had running in 2011. Both of these entrepreneurial women are successfully running a family and a business and are here to help you do both too!
"Let your passion, big dreams and enthusiasm for your idea or invention shine through in your grant application! Our grant is about innovation - here's your chance to share your ideas and get some help to make them reality!
Be persistent. I often feel like I'm on a roller coaster with my start-up business. I can have a great, successful day followed by some real disappointments. It is easy to get discouraged when you come up against what seem like road blocks, but keep plugging away, and you'll be rewarded with another one of those successes that will remind you that you are on the right track!
My favorite inspirational quote for work/ life is from Eleanor Roosevelt: "You must do the thing you think you cannot do."
"My tip for the application would be, be yourself! You don't have to present an elaborate formal application! Just get all your info in and keep it simple!
My tip for managing home and business is to keep a calendar and schedule. I put everything in my iPhone calendar, from picking up the kiddos to conference calls with Kimberly-Clark! It really helps having an alert remind me! I also keep a schedule of what needs to happen every day and when. That way it's in front of me! And don't get discouraged if the "plan" changes, because it will....more often than not. Especially with little ones at home!"
Lucky Ducky Baby LLC
"As far as advice, it is a very simple application, it only took a few minutes for me and has given me so much in return.
I try to work while my kids are in school, when they were really small I worked while they were napping and before and after they fell asleep for the night. You need to get creative to make the most of the time you have, you owe it to yourself and your dream."
Ritzy Bitzy Designs
"While the online application is simple to fill out, you want to make sure you make a good first impression. When I fill out online applications I always prepare the responses in a saveable document, such as Word, so that I can review my responses multiple times for content and make multiple revisions prior to submission. I then cut and paste my responses to the online document. This helps to ensure that your responses are well thought out and clear and that you have used proper grammar and avoided spelling errors. You have only one shot.
I make sure to transact business early in the day, while my kids are at school, so that after I pick them up from school I can work from home on the computer. In the beginning I felt guilty about the time I devoted to the computer at home, until I realized that my children did not need my total time devotion but to know that I was there in the house should they need me."
"Our advice would be - first and foremost - apply as it has been a great experience. The product exposure and recognition have been of immeasurable value to Clouds and Stars. Regarding the application, make sure to convey your passion for your product or idea.
Consider every challenge as an opportunity because you never know where it will take you. Taking a concept from an idea to production is a huge challenge and an accomplishment, so take pleasure in all the positive things that happen each day and use them to fuel yourself for the next challenge."
Joan Henehan & Elizabeth Sopher,
CLOUDS AND STARS, INC.