Entrepreneur Mom

with Aliza Sherman

If you own a business - home-based or otherwise - this is the blog where you'll find practical tips and smart ideas about entrepreneurship. I've started and run 4 different businesses so "been there, done that." I'll also invite successful entrepreneurs to share their best advice with you.

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A unique education: lessons children of mompreneurs learn

Categories: Work/Life

2 comments

by guest blogger Gina Blitstein

Every mother stands in a powerful position to impart her various talents, values and ideals to her children. It is her responsibility and privilege to influence her children, teaching them by her example how to succeed and find happiness in their lives. When that mother is also an entrepreneur, or “mompreneur,” her children are the beneficiaries of a plethora of unique life, practical and social lessons. What can children learn from an entrepreneur mother?

Toni M Schulken, MS, OTR/L is a pediatric occupational therapist, inventor, president of Pathways For Learning & Pathways For Learning Products, a devoted wife and a proud mother of five young children. According to Toni, any family member working hard to make and achieve goals is a positive influence on others around them, particularly children. She believes that children learn many lessons from the circumstances of their mother’s entrepreneurial mindset and lifestyle.

Toni says that some of the things she and her business have taught her children and benefited her family include:

  • Owning your own business is a lot of hard work. My children understand that the harder you work the more likely you are to achieve what you really want. They have learned to set goals and focus on achieving them.
  • Owning your own business is a lot of hard work. My children understand that the harder you work the more likely you are to achieve what you really want. They have learned to set goals and focus on achieving them.
  • My children know to use their brains, use their skills, budget both their money & time and to make rational decisions in a timely manner.
  • My children see me working on ALL aspects of my business. There is no job we are “above.” They understand that everyone working for Pathways For Learning has an important job regardless of what that job is; they understand the power of teamwork!
  • They also realize that you can’t give up. Not only is MY family relying on the success of the business but also all of my employees families. There is a great responsibility associated with “being the boss” and consideration for others involved is an important lesson. “Being the boss” does have it’s advantages and my kids have quickly caught onto to those as well.
  • Owning my own business allows me to insure that we, as a company and a family, always do the right thing. Running a successful business is not all about money & profits and it is important to me that my children understand that.
  • Teaching my children the value of a dollar was a breeze. They don’t come to me or my husband to ask for money, they ask what they can do to EARN money. They see how hard my husband and I work to earn it and have adopted that same work ethic. Because of this, they automatically express appreciation for the fortunate things and experiences in our life.
  • Socially, my children understand that every decision you make could have repercussions on your reputation both personally & professionally. Owning a small, locally run company means business and pleasure sometimes overlap. Responsible choices in everyday life is fundamental.
  • Most importantly, my children have learned to create a balanced lifestyle. I’m an entrepreneur, therapist & business woman that has put family first. My greatest responsibility is to my husband and five children. My children realize that you can have a family and successful business without sacrificing one for the other. I respect each member of my family and include them in the business so they can grow, learn and be part of it.

Every mother’s job is endlessly demanding. Every mother who is employed in any capacity faces the additional challenge of finding opportunities to spend meaningful time with her children in which she can serve as a role model. An entrepreneur mom has both the challenge of balancing the demands of her own professional and personal life coupled with the opportunity to include her family in the experience of being a business owner. It is by no means easy to combine motherhood with the demands of being an entrepreneur but the lessons and rewards are priceless gifts to children.

What do your children learn from you as an entrepreneur?



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2 comments so far...

  • So glad you shared these lessons. As a Mompreneur transitioning from corporate America to starting my own business, one of my passions is to show my 11 yr old daughter how to be self sufficient and to follow her passions with result getting action. I’ve always had an entrepreneurial spirit and have shared that spirit with my daughter.

    In many ways, I love how she is so independent at such a young age. I don’t pay her allowance and she rarely comes to me for money or purchases. At 8, she started her own dog services business which has enabled her to experience “financial freedom” and has given her plenty of opportunities to learn the value of a dollar and how to properly save and/or utilize money. She has been able to pay for school field trips, gifts to others, donate, little odds and ends, bathing suits, special lunches, etc. She definitely thinks twice when making a purchase as to whether her purchase is a need or want and whether she truly wants to spend the money for it or not.

    She too understands the value of hard work. She shared with me one day that she enjoys interacting with the dogs, but cleaning up poo in people’s yards is not fun. Though she continues to do it because she wants to keep her customers happy, offer quality service, and make money.

    The value of time management is another lesson learned. Learning how to juggle school, business, homework, Girl Scouts, etc can be a challenge at times. Learning now how to manage time is so very important. She’s gained her share of lessons on when to say no to something and when to set priorities.

    Well, just wanted to express how much I enjoyed this post. If you don’t mind, I’d like to share and link to this on my blog.

    Thanks

    LeNesha  |  August 20th, 2009 at 3:44 am

  • Awesome article! Since teaching teens and homeschoolers how to start a business is MY business, I completely agree. You brought up some points that I hadn’t even thought of, like there is no job we are ‘above’ and the value of teamwork.

    We’ve all heard that more is ‘caught’ than ‘taught’ when we are raising children, and I think mompreneurs are imparting so much more to their children than they realize.

    I know many mompreneurs still struggle with guilt about the time they spend on their business sometimes, but articles like this help us all realize how closely we are being watched-and the value of how that time is spent.

    Hope you don’t mind if I link to this for my readers!

    Deb Maubach  |  August 20th, 2009 at 3:32 pm