Thursday, November 12, 2009

Reaching out from the basement

For many of the mom entrepreneurs we know, we’re heading into show season. There are baby shows and children’s shows, not to mention the craft shows that define our lives each fall. On the downside, there’s a whole lot of schlepping involved, not to mention long hours on your feet and juggling childcare. But there’s a silver lining to show season as well, and not just the sales and contacts – there’s the meeting of the mom entrepreneurs.

Over the years we’ve been lucky to meet up with amazing women running fabulous companies. But since Amy and I each get to work with our best friend, we’ve found that we can get a bit insular. We can get so caught up in the minutiae of our joint business and home lives that sometimes we forget to reach out to other business moms. Of course we know how important networking is, but it can definitely be put aside in favour of more pressing ‘To Dos.' Sure, we love to talk to our entrepreneurial friends about business. Anyone who owns their own business can relate to the trials and tribulations. But only a mom entrepreneur really understands what our lives look like.

After years in the basement alone or in the company of each other, it was a (delightful) shock to the system when earlier this year we went out chatted with a whole bunch of mom entrepreneurs. Over the course of a couple of months we met with women we knew well, and women we knew of but didn’t really know. Since time was of the essence we split up for the majority of these coffee dates. To a person, each of the women we met with brought up some interesting perspective we’d never thought of. They also shared their amazing stories as well as tips for juggling business and family. The mom entrepreneurs were friendly, helpful and wise. At the end of it, we felt that we’d made some amazing connections and were only disappointed that we hadn’t each been able to connect with everyone!

We learned a lot from the experience of getting out in the world and connecting. And I’m not talking just about what the mom entrepreneurs had to say. We were reminded how essential networking is – for our business and for ourselves.

The path of the mom entrepreneur can be a lonely one – but there are tons of amazing women at the other end of the phone or across the table at Starbucks. We try harder now to reach out and to stay in touch. It’s important and it’s fun.

So, to our mom entrepreneur friends – if we miss you over the next few busy months – let’s make a date soon for a coffee and a chat!

No comments:

Post a Comment