Last week I featured an interview with a woman and mother who quit her job to start her own business. This week I interviewed Vicky, a substitute teacher, mom of two young children and entrepreneur. Her new business venture is in as a consultant with a children’s clothing company. Her official launch is in Ottawa this weekend and you are welcome to come (children are welcome too).
How do these programs work and what benefit does it have for moms trying to find balance? Vicky was kind enough to take the time (something in short supply I’m sure!) to answer some questions:
What is Peekaboo Beans? When did you get involved as a Peekaboo Beans Stylist? What made you decide to step into this role?
Peekaboo Beans is a fresh approach to playwear. We design our products with both parent and child in mind. I have loved this line since I first came across it in 2007, when looking for products to carry in my online store I owned at the time. It was always the best selling line in the shop, so when the opportunity came up to become a representative for the line in Ottawa, I jumped on board!
One of Peekaboo Bean’s core values is the importance of play for childhood development. The clothing is designed to maximize comfort or ease of movement! What I loved about this was that it tied in so well to my own teaching philosophies.
How does it work?
Each year there are two Peekaboo Beans collections – one in the Spring and another in the Fall. Customers can place orders directly through me, or if they prefer they can host a Playdate Soiree, where I bring the collection right to their homes! It’s a great opportunity to view the entire Peekaboo Beans award winning playwear collection … while the kids play! Host a Soiree in your home and earn free clothing for your own children. Or if you prefer a night out to enjoy some down time and a glass of wine with friends, it’s truly shopping that meets you and your schedule.
This isn’t your first step into the role of ‘entrepreneur’ – can you tell me about your other ventures?
It seems as though I have many projects on the go these days! Being a Peekaboo Beans Stylist is not my first entrepreneurial adventure. In 2007 I started an online retail clothing store with a friend, called Apples’n'Oranges.
You also area mom and teacher! I admire you for taking on so many different roles. How do you balance your time with everything?
Trying to balance everything I want to do in a day is hard work. I find mornings are challenging, getting everyone ready before I have to leave isn’t always easy. But I have a fantastic and supportive husband who does more than his fair share! I find when I’m well organized, have my meals planned, and lunches made in advance, there is far less stress for everyone! I love that supply teaching allows me to balance this new business venture, time with my kids and everything else I need to do!
Are there any steps other women should consider when deciding to start a new business or sales venture?
I think it’s really easy to get excited about a new business idea or venture and jump in with both feet without really considering just how much time and effort is required. Growing a business takes time, and often the rewards gained at the beginning are not always monetary ones. I always think surveying other entrepreneurs to find out what’s really involved with starting a new business is a great way to gather research and help make important decisions.
How do you think being online (Twitter, Facebook etc) will help?
I think social media is my best marketing tool! What I love about using Twitter and Facebook to promote my business is that it puts me in front of people I wouldn’t have access to otherwise. Twitter and Facebook are a great way to connect with like-minded people and to regularly remind people about my business, and any promotions or events I might have. Staying top of mind and being visible as much as possible is so important when growing a business, and social media definitely helps with that!
What advice do you have for other moms who are thinking about starting a new job on the side?
For at home moms I would say starting a part time ‘consulting’ type of business is a great way to meet new people while bringing in a bit of income. However, I don’t think I could manage a full time career with a part time job on the side, as well as have time to spend with my kids!
What are three words that describe how you feel about your new venture?
Excited. Passionate. Empowered.
Thanks Vicky for taking the time to answer these questions and help inspire other women who may be looking to work out of their home. Good luck with your new venture and your launch this weekend!