It’s Working Wednesday! This past month has been a whirlwind for me because I started a new job. After being at my previous employer for five years, it just felt right to move on. And it turns out I am SUPER happy about it. Juggling life as a working mom is not for the faint of heart. My friend Bobbie Bailey is the ultimate working mom. She owns her own business and is juggling life well. And has a sweet baby girl due soon. Bobbie wrote a guest post for Tacoma Working Mom this week, read on to find out how she manages to have “It All.” I especially like what she says about work-life integration. Thank you Bobbie for being transparent and sharing your story.
It’s a great time to be a female en¬trepreneur, even while being a mom of [nearly] two now—and the founder and president of my Tacoma-based market¬ing agency.
People often speculate, and on occa¬sion even ask, “How do you success¬fully run a business, have love in your marriage and raise children without hiring someone to help? Don’t get me wrong, I have my share of exhausting days, but for the most part I’ve developed a great system to man¬age my time and have what— I feel —is “it all”!
Work-life integration is pivotal, if not the new norm, for working females. I feel it’s more than a mindset; it has to be a lifestyle in order to succeed.
First, I had to set boundaries between work and family time, schedule manda¬tory vacations and turn off my phone!
The second item on the must-do list was to make work time actually work time. Even before I had employees, I found a 14-square-foot office to rent. It was just somewhere to focus when I needed to. Also, success doesn’t come without some personal work, too.
I truly had to figure out who I was as a mother and business owner and get rid of the weeds in my life. Surrounding myself with naysayers doesn’t create the environment needed for success.
After establishing that framework, I felt nothing but support from my hus¬band, friends and other business owners. I must admit that when the integration began, even my biggest skeptics were feeling proven wrong, and success be¬came that much easier.
Many people view motherhood and entrepreneurship as separate lives, almost as though women need to have two com¬pletely difference personalities to do this.
That doesn’t ring true for me at all, as many of my business relationships have turned into great friendships and we share business as well as family interests.
Again, I believe a big key to my success is taking the time, up front, to figure out my unique core values and incorporating them into my busi-ness—and most importantly my fam¬ily—life.
Being a mother who has channeled my education, experience and creativity into launching multiple businesses while hav¬ing young children has been tough, I’ll admit it. However, I intend to show my children, through my hard work, that they can have anything they want if they put their mind to it.
I could have been a stay-at-home-mom or worked a 9 to 5 schedule for an employer, and—trust me—I’ve thought long and hard about those alternatives. But, for me, the route I’ve chosen is by far the most satisfying and has provided endless opportunities for both myself and my family.
My hope is that Ayden and Parker see me as a mother who always will encourage them to be ambitious, studi¬ous, thoughtful and curious—and show them that there are no limits on their potential in life.
Author Bailey, in the photo above with hus¬band, Chris, and son, Ayden, is the president of Marketing Puget Sound, based in Tacoma. She founded the agency in 2009 and has grown it to seven employees. Her firm works with more than 40 businesses in the North¬west, helping them design and implement custom marketing strategies. You can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.