This blog post, written by Vicky Matthews, one of the founders of Pink Spaghetti, was first published on www.workingmums.co.uk.
Running your own businesses is hard work, however, when you throw into the mix your children, the challenges can be even harder. However, before I moan about how short school days are and how frequent the school holidays are I need to remember that our children are the reason why we set up our franchise Pink Spaghetti. We wanted the flexibility to do the school run, be at every sports day and not have to put our children into holiday clubs all of the time. Largely, we have managed to achieve this and here are my top tips on how to do this:
Be super organised.
I love lists and I have a list for everything. I know exactly where my children, my husband and I are going to be each week; what we will be eating and who will be picking up who and from where! I have a spreadsheet of potential activities for the school holidays and when friends are available to swap children for play dates so I can work. This means that I know when I can arrange client meetings, when I will be in the office to be with the team and what work I can commit to and by when.
Find out if you are an early riser or a night owl and work accordingly.
School days are short and during the school holidays I always try to switch my working hours so that I can have time with the children. I am an early riser so I am happy to bring forward my working day and then pick up emails later in the day.
Use your technology to its best effect.
I am never without my iPhone these days. My phone enables me to check my email, access my files on Dropbox and generally work from anywhere. When my children were very young I could be sitting in a play barn, children happily playing whilst I checked my emails.
Use your networks.
There are times when I am franchise training or out with a franchisee and this can mean I can’t be back for the school run. I have friends who work full time and who struggle to get their children to a party or a club and so we all work together to help each other out. I will offer to take a child’s friend somewhere or have them to play during the school holidays and I know that I can rely on them too when I need them. The real bonus of this that the children love having their friends with them too!