How long have you been a Mompreneur?
For most of my career, I have been managing demanding roles in law, corporate and interior design companies. Twelve years ago after the birth of my two daughters, I realized that the fulfilment of becoming a mother was (is) just as rewarding as being at the top of my career. Having to choose between only ONE of those roles, in order to be an active contributor towards our household, wasn’t adequate for me, so instead, I decided to juggle BOTH. Twelveyears ago, I stepped out of the corporate ‘rat race’ and started my own business. The returns of my enterprising decision was endless, as I was able to pursue my own dreams and visions, freed up from the restraints of desk-bound jobs, office hours and obligations and instead being able to spontaneously embrace my daughters’ presence in my day-to-day-profession. I’ve never looked back.
Tell us about how you got started.
The desire to change my career in order to improve my family life, ignited my drive to take bold chances in order to succeed. Without questioning my decisions, I embarked on this new ‘self-employed-mompreneur’ journey. With a 5-month-old baby in one arm, a toddler in the other (and little knowledge of jewelry making), I started a beading/jewelry shop in South Africa. Three years later, I received a business award nomination for this venture. Feeling confident and inspired, I established a charity organization, teaching business- and design skills to the less fortunate. Growing an empire of over 100 successful business individuals in my project, I received a Local Hero’s Award for my four years work. We relocated to Singapore three years ago, ready for yet another business adventure and I became a mid-forty-mom- fashion-designer student. In early 2014 I created Foxtrot Fashion House, designer women’s clothing ranges, – leather bags and shoes. By having invested quality time during my children’s earlier developing stages, I reaped the rewards of their independence today, by being able to utilize more hours and focus on my career. I continue to involve my daughters in my day-to-day business, teaching them to be driven and to making dreams come true.
“Never too old or being too bold to make a positive change.”
How do you juggle the role of Mommy & CEO?
By turning my work time into their ‘educational playtime’, in order to manage both during busy periods. It didn’t always go smooth when they were toddlers, but at least it bought me some time during meetings. I explained the importance of my work to them, encouraged them to mimic myself by playing quietly next to me with toy laptops, pens and notepads, whilst I focused on the meeting. During large jewelry orders, I gave them assortments of beads to create and design with me and rewarded them with selling their final pieces in my shop, with their photos displayed on the packaging. Today they are older and enjoy to attend fashion shows or events with me, becoming my “PAs”, displaying stock, or assisting me with compiling stock videos. They both still love to sketch and design with me and jump with joy every time one of my sketches become a real life sample. Looking back, I am grateful for making this decision many years ago, as today I am able to share my passion and career with my daughters and in return, receive their full support and motivation.
What was some of the toughest hurdles you faced being a Mompreneur? (and how did you overcome them?)
The toughest hurdle was/is not having enough time in the day/night, to finalize every task that I have set for myself in order to reach my weekly goals and targets. I have accepted the fact that I can only do so much each day and instead of chasing myself for the tasks that I haven’t done, I’ve learned to now compliment myself for the many tasks that I have managed to do.
What advice do you have for other Moms out there who are thinking of starting their own business?
Be conscious of what is 1st or 2nd priority when having your children present in your ‘office’. As busy as it may get at times, by attending to their needs first, will buy you longer working hours/periods and at the same time keep yourself and the household serene. Always know that you ARE capable of many things and if you love what you do, you will do it with love.
Shameless Plug: Why should we buy your product/service?
On the subject of love and understanding, a lot of that, time and sincerity has been invested into each of my designs. From sketching, to sourcing quality leathers and textiles from around the world, to personally testing each and every sample to offer excellence, comfort and value for your money. I created padded leather shoes promoting health, posture and ‘endurance’; versatile garments flattering any figure, age or occasion; in matching textiles and colours offering you a one-stop-shop solution and more time – to focus on family. My inspiration came from strong, adventurous women of our past, breaking all the rules in daredevil careers of aviation – the first women pilots. Just as these courageous women inspired me, I was also inspired by all the high flying working moms, to offer you a true and well deserved GIFT.
For more information visit: www.foxtrotshoes.com