Hi Hannah, welcome to No Mum Is An Island. I am a great believer that no mum (or dad) should have to do everything herself, we can’t possibly know it all, and we need all the support we can get, there is a wealth of information out there to help us upgrade our parenting experience, to make our lives easier and this website is a hub for just that! We love that you have upgraded your life by supporting other mothers to unlock their potential and in turn unlocked your own!
Your website Talented Ladies Club offers inspiration to mothers who want to make money from their passion what motivated you to create this incredible hub?
I was inspired by my own experience – and that of my friends. When I fell pregnant with my daughter in 2008 I decided to work from home, and needed to change the way I found freelance clients. At that time I also met lots of new mum friends, many of whom had had impressive careers, but couldn’t make them work as a mother.
I thought that was such a waste, and wanted to inspire mothers to still pursue their ambitions and give them practical advice and support to help them do it.
I started researching what resources were available for ambitious mothers at that time, and was shocked at how little there was available. So I created my own website!
What guidance can you give to women who have yet to discover their passion but know they want to work for themselves?
Look at your skills and your experience. What do you love doing? What would you do every day for free if you could? What problems can you solve for people? What expertise would people pay you for?
We’re often far more skilled than we give ourselves credit for – especially when it comes to natural or acquired talent. If we find something easy or enjoyable, we can’t believe people would want to pay us for it.
If someone is really stuck, I usually give them a series of exercises to help them find ideas. Here’s one:
List ALL the tasks you do in your current and/or past roles. These can be as micro as planning a report, researching a report, finding relevant data, writing the report, proofreading the report etc.
Then make two columns next to the list – one for ‘good at this task’ and the other ‘enjoy this task’. Tick the columns that apply for each task.
Now review the list. Look at tasks that have two ticks next to them. What patterns can you see in these tasks? Similarly, tasks that have no ticks, or just one.
This exercise can reveal specific tasks you are especially strong at, but it can also, just as importantly, identify types of tasks. So for example, you might find that your strength lies in planning, in data or in creative tasks.
It also helps you to see the types of tasks you are not naturally good at and don’t enjoy, so you can avoid these where possible in future.
Once someone has that feeling of knowing their passion, how do they go about building a business they love?
You need to identify a specific problem you solve for someone, and who that person or business is. Then research your target market and idea to ensure they’re viable.
Once you’re confident that there’s a need for what you do, the next step I would take would be writing a business plan (there are lots of free templates online for this). This will help you explore all the areas of your business, and spot any gaps in your thinking.
I also recommend creating and selling a minimum viable product – basically, this means testing your business in the real world in a small way, and checking that people will actually want to buy and use what you sell before you invest all your time, money and hope into your business idea.
At the right time in your business, it’s also worth investing in business coaching. A coach will help you to identify areas you need to work on, share expertise and hold you accountable so you make real progress.
The fear of failing makes so many people not take the plunge into starting their own venture, what advice can you offer to those who are afraid of getting it wrong?
The only real failures are those people who have ideas and dreams but don’t act on them. Pretty much every successful entrepreneur I have spoken to has attempted other projects and businesses – with varying success – before launching a profitable business.
If your business idea doesn’t work out, use it as a valuable lesson. What can you learn from it? What has it taught you? No one walks away from an experience without acquiring invaluable wisdom that will help them in the future in some way.
Creating a new business takes a lot of dedication and can be lonely at times, how do your supporters use the Talented Ladies Business Club group on Facebook and can anyone join?
Running your own business IS lonely, and it’s important you find other people following a similar path to share your journey with. Over the years I have made so many wonderful business friends through Talented Ladies Club, and we support and help each other where we can.
And yes, many women find the support and practical help they need through Facebook groups like the TLC Business Club. It’s a free, friendly space in which people can share their skills, successes and problems in a like-minded community.
What is the greatest advice you have been given and why?
Just do it! Too many people (including me) have a business idea, but don’t have the confidence to start it. They worry they don’t know what to do. That they’re not an entrepreneur. Or that the idea isn’t right yet.
But you won’t know what to do or be an entrepreneur until you actually start your business. And your idea will never be perfect enough.
The best time to start your business is right now. Yes you’ll probably make lots of mistakes – but you’ll also learn from them. And often, it’s only in starting your business that your real business idea emerges.
So if anyone is reading this and wishing they ran their own business, I would recommend following some of the tips I have shared here and start taking the first steps to making it real today. If you don’t, you may regret it.