I got to a Womens group every few weeks where we talk about issues that go slightly more in depth than the usual talk at toddler groups! This term we’re looking at ‘Being a Princess’ so it was really relevant when I got asked to review Tanith Carey’s, ‘Where Has My Little Girl Gone?’. The ‘princess’ theme came out of all the Royal wedding hoo-ha, discussions about what our daughters think of being a princess, and the changes Kate Middleton will have to cope with. ‘Where Has My Little Girl Gone?’ was a really helpful book to look at, both for the mums of daughters and for those with sons in our group.
The book looks to address how, “from every angle, our daughters are bombarded by messages about looks and sexuality which they are too young to understand. Even primary school girls feel pressured to conform to a thin, ‘sexy’ ideal, leading to self-destructive behaviour, ranging from eating disorders and self-harm to anxiety and low self-esteem. But while girls are fast-tracked though childhood, parents are being drowned out by the internet, retailers, the media and peer pressure. We are left feeling panicky and helpless.”
The key things to take from the book are in the sections on confidence building and helping your child grow their own (positive) identity. Every mum will find something useful in this book makes you think about the TV your children watch, the toys they play with and their role models, and gives you practical ideas to help your children grow up with a positive self image. The book went down well with a mum of three boys as well as the parents of girls. Well worth investing in for any mum … or dad!
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What is stopping you starting your own business right now? If you’d love to earn money in a flexible way, help boost the family budget and show friends and family that you can succeed, read this article from Antonia Chitty and Erica Douglas of www.becomeamumpreneur.com.
As mums, we often sell ourselves short. The very phrase, “I’m just a mum” is often heard as we look at great opportunities and decide that they are out of your reach. In fact, as mums we are multi-able, multi-tasking superwomen. We juggle managing a team, even if its members are mainly under 18, scheduling appointments, staying on top of the finances, planning and putting ideas into practice. All these skills put you in a great place if you want to go into business.
Of course, there are some skills that you can’t learn from being a mum. If you want to run a transcription business, you’ll need to learn how to type. If you would like to offer reflexology or want to become a graphic designer, you’ll need the right skills too. It is important, then, to draw a distinction between your lack of confidence and actually areas where you genuinely don’t have a skill you might need to start the business of your dreams.
If you know that you’d love to take up a new career, make a note of three things you could do to get the skills you need. Might you enquire at the local college, see if you could do a regular swap with a friend to give you some child free time, and get a book from the library so you can start learning right away? Then, book in time this week to take those first steps.
If your real problem is lack of confidence in yourself, think about what you could do to feel MORE confident. Start but creating a vision board, one that looks back at your successes and times that you have felt great. Put up certificates and photos of things that you are proud of achieving, whether it is a great cake you have baked, your children, or a qualification, like passing your driving test. Look at your ‘success board’ every day and note down the little things you achieve that make you feel good.
Then, start taking baby steps towards doing something like starting your business. No business pops up fully grown overnight: if you can do one tiny thing towards growing your business every day, you’ll be amazed by how much you can achieve in a year!
Take your first step today: build your confidence, learn and grow your skills by joining the Mumpreneur in a Month eCourse.
More and more mums are starting businesses, and ‘back to school’ is the time when mums get really focussed on business success. If you’re a mum with a business that’s going places, will you be at the BusinessMums Conference?
The event takes place in Brighton on 5th October and is attracting mums with businesses and those looking for ideas from Kent and Sussex right down to Dorset and as far afield as Lancashire.
There are almost 200 mums booked for the event and the last few tickets are selling fast: closing day for ticket sales is the 29th of September, so buy yours now if you’d like to
· Hear from global businesswoman Annabel Karmel
· Learn how to start or grow your business
· Attend sessions to help you Get Noticed! or Get Confident!
· Enjoy coffee, cupcakes and a three course buffet lunch
· See the winners of the BusinessMums Awards announced
· End the day with networking over a glass of champagne
· Go home with a fabulous goodie bag.
Go to www.businessmumsconference.co.uk and buy your ticket by MIDNIGHT Monday 29th SEPTEMBER
This event is sponsored by
Jo Wise – Sussex Business Bureau – Educast – Knill James
Inspired Odyssey – The Womnes Business Clubs – Fit Freedom – Active Physio Clinics – Playpennies – Sugargroup – Study in Style – Vitabiotics
Create – The Womens Coaching Company – Startups.Co.uk
There are just 4 days left to grab some amazing free training tools that Erica Douglas and I have on offer over at www.aceinspire.com. There are videos, tip sheets, reports, all of which will help you LEARN new online promotion skills and use them to increase SALES. Find out more or go and sign up now - don't miss out on this chance to find out some of the secrets I use to promote my business, secrets that could help you drive sales to your business too.
Did you know The Mumpreneur Guide's Start Your own Business Book is now available as an e-book for just £9 - buy it now and you will get a link sent through to your inbox so you can use the book to develop your business straight away. www.themumpreneurguide.co.uk
"I have started my own business already as a writer and I run a busy blog. I thought Antonia's book may be a bit basic for me but NO! It was truly fab. I have read stories of other successful inspiring women and feel very motivated. Antonia writes simply and to the point...a delightful, helpful work book." Becky Goddard,
Winning an award for your business has to be the best feeling. When you run your own business you rarely get external acknowledgement and an award makes all the difference. It can help you gain all sorts of publicity, and builds customer trust. Whether you have yet to win an award for your business, or you have won already and know just how powerful an award win can be, why not enter this years’ BusinessMums Conference Awards? Entering is simple. Don't panic about your style or grammar: we’re looking for inspiring businesses run by committed mums who are making a success of their enterprise. The more detail you supply the more able we will be to make a good decision. Please include supporting material as appropriate:
- Media coverage
- Customer testimonials
Send in your entry by 17th September. The panel of judges is headed by What’s On 4’s award winning founder Sam Willoughby, Lynette Allen of The Womens Coaching Company together with Nicky Chisholm, Suzanne Borrell, and Antonia Chitty. http://www.businessmumsconference.co.uk/awards.php CATEGORIES: Best ‘business start up’ award
- for businesses within their first two years. Sponsored by Create.net Best ‘growing business’ award
– for businesses two years and older. Sponsored by The Womens Coaching Company The winner of each award WILL WIN:
Media coverage of their win in:
- Sussex Life
- Mums Inc
- ABC Magazine
1 year membership of the Mumpreneurs’ Networking Club A Make-Over including Makeup, manicure and pedicure by Anita Smith of Brighton Beauty - www.brightonbeauty.co.uk A personal Style session from Helen Reynold, Style Step Consultant and Sarah Greg Green House Clothes Consultant. More about this prize... A coaching session with Lynette Allen of the Women’s Coaching Company. In addition the winner of the Best Start up Business will win a Website Consultation session courtesy of Create.net. And the winner of the Best Growing Business will win £250 worth of Advertising with the What’s On 4 Group.
1. To be nominated for an award you must be a mum and own your own business. 2. You may nominate yourself or someone else. 3. Judges and relatives of the judges may not enter. 4. To enter you must be able to attend the BusinessMums Conference on October 5th in Brighton. 5. Shortlisted entries and winners will be announced at the BusinessMums Conference on October 5th in Brighton. 6. Award entries may be submitted until midnight 17th September. 7. Businesses in their first two years
of trading may enter the best business start up category. All other businesses will be judged in the ‘growing business’ category. 8. There will be a shortlist of three finalists for each category.
FINALIST PRIZES Each finalist will win a selection of signed business books from Antonia Chitty and Startups.co.uk
Mums with Businesses have the chance to learn from an amazing speaker lineup at the BusinessMums Conference 2010 which takes place in Brighton later this year. After keynote speaker Annabel Karmel, attendees can listen to Mel McGee, author of Millionaire Mumpreneurs who explains how to Stop Marketing - Start Engaging.
Breakout sessions include:
- Get Started! Invaluable advice on how to set up your own business by Julia Chanteray, Channel 4 business expert
- Get Out of Your Rut! Ongoing business development. How to keep up the momentum and revolutionise your business practices by Carmen MacDougall of The VA Coaching and Training Company
- Get Noticed! Branding and brand promotion by author and award winning entrepreneur Mumpreneur Guide Antonia Chitty of ACPR
- Get Confident! Robyn Hatley, coach, Mums the Business
The afternoon starts with a Case Study, "Business Stripped Bare" – hear how Jo Wise’s started a new service to beat the recession. Get Social with Nikki Backshall of Webmums who shows how Harnessing the Power of Online Networking can get your name out there. This is followed by a panel discussion and your chance to question Sophie Cornish of NOTHS, Sam Willoughby of WhatsOn4and Alex Stone of Just too Busy
The Business Mums’ Conference 2010 will help you get inspired and learn skills to develop their business. Book at earlybird rates until 30th June. For more about The Business Mums’ Conference 2010, see www.businessmumsconference.co.uk
If you have a wedding business, the Wedding Media Database is the easy way to get press coverage . Available until 31 May only.
If you run a wedding business, here are some simple tips to help you promote it and get coverage in wedding magazines worth thousands of pounds:
1. What’s new? Choose a new product or service, ideally something that’s unique to your business. 'New' always makes better news!
2. Pick Your Media. Think about which media your business might appear in. Look at blogs, read national wedding magazines and find out about local wedding magazines. For a quick way to get lists of wedding media, check the contacts in the Wedding Media Database.
3. Find the right contact. If you are unsure who you need to contact, look for the editorial assistant’s contact details. Send her a quick email, explaining, “I have a great new (describe your products or service). Who would be the best person to send information about it to?”
4. Get in touch. Write an email describing what’s new and unique about your product or service, and why it is just right for readers of the magazine. Send this email to your contact.
5. Follow up. Use the Wedding Media Database to pull out the relevant phone number and make a call to your contact to offer samples or images.
6. Do It Again. Make 1 or 2 calls or send 1 or 2 emails each day. You will soon be getting great coverage for your wedding business, plus clippings and quotes that you can refer to on your website. These are invaluable for any business. Independent coverage in the media makes potential customers trust your business and can turn them from browsers to buyers.
An award winning businesswoman with a multimillion pound business will share her advice at the start of the BusinessMums Conference 2010 which takes place in Brighton later this year. With a high profile, product ranges across numerous national chains, and guidance that almost every mum follows at some stage in her baby or child’s life, Annabel Karmel MBE is the symbol for long term success as a mumpreneur.
Annabel Karmel’s ‘Eat Fussy’ range is the Number 1 Kids Chilled meals brand and the fastest growing year on year. She is also the author of 22 books with global book sales of over £4million. At the BusinessMums Conference Annabel will be sharing her advice for mums in business and would be mumpreneurs. Annabel Karmel is pleased to be part of the event and says, “I wish there had been a business mums conf when I was starting out. The BusinessMums Conference in October in Brighton is a unique and exciting event that celebrates the growing contribution that business mums make to the economy. It has taken me many years to build my business and I’ve learnt so much along the way. I’m looking forward to sharing my business advice and experience first hand to so many inspiring mumpreneurs along with my top tips on how to manage motherhood and a thriving company.”
The Business Mums’ Conference 2010 will help women get inspired and learn skills to develop their business. At the show you will meet other mums running their own businesses, plus those thinking and planning to start up. You’ll meet people who have attended the Mumpreneurs Networking Club, those from the Mums in Biz training events and mums from across the south of England and beyond. It’s a chance to catch up with old friends, meet people you have only ever emailed or chatted to on forums, and to make new contacts. It is going to be a fun and glamorous event, with lots of practical applications for any mums who own a business.
For more about The Business Mums’ Conference 2010, see www.businessmumsconference.co.uk
For more about Annabel Karmel see www.annabelkarmel.com.
A new survey for Family Friendly Working and mumandworking to launch the mumandworking Awards shows that parents are leaving the world of employment despite seeing the family income fall. The survey also shows that parents prize time with the family and flexible hours over job security and the amount they earn when choosing a job.
80% of parents have changed their working pattern since having children. The main reason parent change the way they work is to spend more time with the family. Just over half of parents explained that their priorities have changes, while nearly 3 in 10 found that their work hours didn’t fit the childcare available, and 3 in 20 found that it was financially no longer worth working due to the cost of childcare. Overwhelmingly, parents are happy with the choice they have made. Not one respondent wished they had never resigned, while 4 in 10 say that is has been the best decision they ever made, and nearly 6 in 10 describe the experience as ‘hard at times but worth it’.
Only 43% of parents who responded are now employed with the rest self employed, seeking work, studying or taking a career break. And only 17% are working full time. Director of mumandworking and Practical Parenting Business Parent of the Year 2007/08 Sam Willoughby says, “This shows how traditional employment patterns are no longer normal. The 2010 mumandworking awards which are supported by Sarah Beeny reward and recognise the companies and individuals that make flexible working possible and show that family-friendly employment not only supports family life but give real benefits to the companies involved.”
Changing the way you work after having children has a big financial impact – seven out of 10 families have seen a drop in income and for nearly half of those this reduction is between £10-£40k a year. Three in 10 feel they are financially ‘fine’, while four in 10 are ok most of the time but struggle sometimes. Nearly a quarter struggle financially more often than not, with just under one in 10 finding they never have enough money or even have serious debt problems.
Money is not the top priority for parents, however. When asked to list their top three priorities, time with the family came out first for a massive 17 out of 20 parents, while flexible hours were a priority for three in four. Seven in twenty prioritised how much they earn and three in ten prioritised job security. Career progression was a priority for just one in 10. Director of Family Friendly Working and Inspirational Mumpreneur of the Year 2009 Antonia Chitty says, “Employers need to take this message on board to attract and retain employees. I’m pleased to support the 2010 mumandworking awards that recognise outstanding companies and individuals who are committed to flexible and family friendly work.”
To enter the awards or nominate someone go to www.Mumandworking.co.uk. Nominations are open now and there are a range of exciting prizes for the winners.
Thirty business owners got together for coffee, cupcakes and a glamorous photoshoot to launch The Business Mums’ Conference 2010.
The Business Mums’ Conference 2010 is a collaboration between three successful Sussex business women, Nicky Chisholm of Mums in Biz and The Mumpreneurs’ Networking Club, award winning author and entrepreneur Antonia Chitty and Suzanne Borrell of SMB Events, founder of the ‘BabyExpo’ baby shows.
According to a recent BT survey, one mum in 10 wants to run her own business, and 15 per cent of women have started their own business since having children. Nicky Chisholm says, “We’re running the Business Mums’ Conference to help women get inspired, and learn skills to develop their business. At the show you will meet other mums running their own businesses, plus those thinking and planning to start up. You’ll meet people who have attended the Mumpreneurs Networking Club, those from the Mums in Biz training events and mums from across the south of England and beyond. It’s a chance to catch up with old friends, meet people you have only ever emailed or chatted to on forums, and to make new contacts.
Experienced events organizer Suzanne Borrell explains, “This is going to be a fun and glamorous event, but with lots of practical applications for any mums who own a business. We’ve chosen the Thistle Hotel as it a great venue in central Brighton and will be easily accessible for women attending from across the region.”
Antonia Chitty says, “We’ve just launched the site for the event which is well worth a look. Every week we’ll be showcasing a businesswoman from across Sussex and the south east. You can sign up to be the first to hear about the inspiring speakers we are lining up. You’ll also be able to buy tickets for the event which takes place on the 5th of October and is part of Business Mum Week 2010.”
For more about the event, see www.businessmumsconference.co.uk/
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has raised concerns about “bag-style” baby carriers. It is thought that 14 deaths have occurred in the US over the last 20 years, including a number linked to the “bag-style” sling. UK Sling retailers and manufacturers are taking steps to ensure that parents have the information they need to continue to use safe designs of baby carriers and position their babies in the safest way possible.
One design of sling now seems to have potential risks. In “bag-style” slings, the deep pouch where baby sits puts the baby in a potentially suffocating curved position.Excess fabric with an elasticized edge may cover baby’s face and inhibit breathing. The design may cause the baby’s face to turn in toward the carer’s body, potentially smothering the baby. It also obstructs the baby from the parent’s view, due to the high and gathered side panels.
The majority of baby carriers and slings are still safe to use, if they hold baby in proper alignment and fit snugly by design and instruction. These safe designs of sling include shallow pouch-style slings, ring slings, soft carriers and wrap slings.
Advice for Parents
If you carry your baby in a bag-style sling, Rebecca Ward, of the Consortium of UK Sling Manufacturers and Retailers advises you to contact your local babywearing group through Sling Meet, www.slingmeet.co.uk, for advice on alternative slings. She says, “While we are unaware of any fatalities in the UK in these bag style slings at the present time, we would caution against using them in light of the recommendations by the US Safety Commission”. If you have another sort of baby carrier, Rebecca advises, “No safety problems have been brought to our attention with any other baby carriers. Make sure you read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions.” When using a baby sling, the advice provided by the Consortium of UK Sling Manufacturers and Retailers is to follow these basic principles:
Keep your baby close and keep your baby safe. When you’re wearing a sling or carrier, don’t forget the T.I.C.K.S.
In view at all times
Close enough to kiss
Keep chin off the chest
More information on Baby Sling Safety will be added to www.babyslingsafe.com
To find out more about baby wearing and get advice on safe ways to carry your baby there are several trusted websites to help you:
Benefits of Baby Wearing
In well-designed products, studies have shown that baby wearing is not only safe, but is actually beneficial. Such studies have shown that quality baby slings and carriers have been shown to save lives, improve health, decrease crying, increase IQ, and facilitate breastfeeding and bonding. Studies have also shown that worn babies are happier and spend more time in the quiet alert phase. In this phase they benefit more than their non-worn peers in language development and knowledge acquisition. Babywearing also helps babies sleep better, and physical needs, including breastfeeding, are met more quickly by a close, responsive parent. Millions of babies over time have been worn to their benefit making baby slings and carriers more of a necessity than the often-publicized fashion accessory.