By: Roshanda Pratt
She arises at 6 a.m. to get the children ready for school. By 8:30 a.m. she is back home, preparing for a meeting with a potential client and putting in a load of laundry. This is a brief description of the “new” working mom. She is known as a “mompreneur.” According to Biz Online, Ellen Parlapiano and Pat Cobe, two leading authorities on women-owned businesses, coined the term back in the late 1990’s. Entreprenuer.com defines a mompreneur as a female business owner who’s actively balancing the roles of mother and entrepreneur. According to statistics, women make up the fastest-growing segment of small business owners today. There are many reasons why women venture into the business world. For some, it is an opportunity to provide a better service or product than is currently available, while others want to be their own boss. For most, it is the opportunity to make more money.
As a mompreneur, my reason for leaving the traditional workforce to work from home is solely to pursue my passion and to create a legacy for my children. My husband and I want to give our children greater opportunities or a better start in life than we ever had. What a blessing to pass on not only generational wealth, but a business idea in which our children could further expand. Isn’t this what Sam Walton, Truett Cathy and Jerome Monroe Smucker did? For too long, the business world has been left up to the men. But there is an emergence of women who are not just staying at home, but making it profitable.
However, this “new” working mom requires a considerable amount of discipline, time management and support. For example, I work up until 30 minutes before the children get home from school. This allows me to transition my thoughts from work mode to being plain old mom. Then comes homework, dinner (which is sometimes prepared by my husband), baths and preparation for school with some goofing off in the midst of it, and then it is back to the work grind until sometimes midnight. Since I have roles both as a business owner and a mom, I must work hard at not only one job, but two. In no way am I minimizing my friends who work outside the home, in particular single mothers. In fact, let’s take a moment right now to applaud our sisters who are working hard both outside and inside the home. We celebrate YOU!
Even though I have many roles, including acting as a referee in the disputes over toys, serving as a taxi driver, reviewing additional problems while returning client phone calls, and finishing up a project or blog post, I would not trade my “work” life. It has been a juggling act between maintaining a family life and growing my media and marketing business, but the lessons I have learned and the legacy it will create for my children is priceless. The other day, I asked my oldest daughter, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” She told me a school teacher. I asked her, instead of being a teacher why not own the school? My daughter may not have understood at the time, but I am putting an image in her that she does not need to work in a job that already exists; she can create one. Is this not what every woman wants; a chance to create her own thing?
What do you think? Is there a difference between mothers who work from home versus those who work outside of the home?