by Lauren Rose
Starting a franchise can cost upwards of half a million dollars and take years to turn a profit, according to Entrepreneur. The hours are long and stressful, and time managing your business will be spent away from your family. However, the result is a successful career and a consistent income stream, if all goes according to plan. The transition can be challenging, but many of the things that make you an incredible mom will actually translate into business savvy and help you get a leg up on the competition.
You wouldn’t leave home with a baby and no diaper bag, and you shouldn’t even think about launching your own franchise without looking into what resources are available to help you. The Canadian Franchise Association (CFA) works to serve and promote franchise owners and staffing requirements. Look into business bookkeeping programs for help with business finances, sales and expenses. There are additional resources online covering everything from loans to the necessary labor law posters.to be displayed in your office—take advantage of them.
Use Your Community
You’ve heard the saying, “It takes a village to raise a child.” Many mothers are comfortable reaching out for childcare needs or support, or they themselves eagerly lend a hand to others. However, when it comes to your new business, you may worry about alienating friends by appearing to be selling something. According to a New York Times piece that polledwomen in executive roles, successful female executives argue that using favors owed and even your reputation as being reliable or trustworthy is nothing to hesitate about. Similarly, don’t hesitate to reach out to others working to grow their business. Not only is it the right thing to do, but they may have connections or advice that will be useful to you in the future.
Know Your Financing Options
Any mom whose baby wouldn’t sleep through the night has likely checked half a dozen resources to find information. The drive to get a second or third opinion will serve you well in getting the money you need to start a business. The CFA has a list of banks and financial services that loan money for a new franchise. Talk to multiple banks and look into multiple franchises, if necessary, to find the best fit for you.
Adapt Social Media
Businesses large and small pay top dollar for social media consultants. However, according to a recent white paper from SheKnows and Harris Interactive, working moms already have a social media advantage in their Twitter, Facebook and Instagram followers. The people in your networks may not be close friends, but they are people that will view your posts—free advertising, if you keep it to a minimum. Alternatively, someone in your extended online circle may be connected to someone who can offer assistance or advice. As a parent you have juggled obligations, birthday greetings and posting pictures and updates to keep people up to date. As a new part of your life develops, utilize those skills to reach out to your contacts and grow your business.
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