Starting a business and having a baby can be similar processes.
You need to nurture a new child and a new business, ensuring they are able to eventually stand on their own. With appropriate care, you hope your child will one day get straight A’s in school and your company will have a strong reputation and business credit score. Each commitment requires a large amount of your time to grow, and paying an inadequate amount of time to either can be disastrous.
The birth of your business, however, will require an entirely different skill set than the one you’re honing to get ready for your child. With this in mind, you need to develop a plan if you want to tackle both of these life events at the same time. Considering you’ll have two newborns on your hands, you’ll want to do whatever possible to minimize stress and avoid stretching yourself too thin.
Get Your Business Off the Ground First
Starting a company is a difficult endeavor with serious financial implications. You’ll face the added pressure of having the expenses of your baby and the expenses of your business compete over the same pot of money. If you think you’ll need to take out a loan to ease potential cash flow problems, be sure to research your options months in advance, as financing can take three or four months to show up in your bank account.
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Beyond financing, it can take some time before you get the business into a stable position, and the constant demands of the first few months or years can make it difficult to take maternity leave – especially if you’re the only employee.
Whether you’re working alone, with a few partners or with a handful of employees, ensure your business is stable enough to run smoothly while you take time off to be with your baby. Identify someone in your company who can take on some or all of the responsibilities that you usually manage yourself. If you’re a one-man show, put responsibility in the hands of someone you trust and can keep the business afloat while you’re away.
Set Goals Based on a Timeline
Pregnancy creates a forced schedule in your life, which means you can plan your business strategy around that timeline. If you want to hire an office manager to take care of things, for instance, you might consider doing so before you reach the third trimester. Doing this will ensure your new employee can be comfortable before you’re spending less time in the office.
This same thinking applies to any marketing campaigns or other strategies that are stretched out across several months. If you have a six-month social media strategy, you may want to designate someone – an employee or even an intern – to track the campaign’s success while you’re out of the office.
Keep in mind the plan you create needs to be tailored to your business and motherhood needs. It’s a difficult endeavor, but your company won’t go up in flames while you’re gone for a few months if you take measures to plan out your absence. You may have to make some adjustments along the way, so remain flexible and enjoy this exciting time in your life.
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