Once upon a time, in a world where resolutions magically transformed into reality, dishes cleaned themselves and personal growth unfolded like a captivating novel, parentrepreneurs successfully navigated the challenges of balancing family life and entrepreneurial aspirations. But alas, we live in reality, a realm where dishes and laundry pile up and where entrepreneurs are often parents, and parents, entrepreneurs. Welcome to the adventurous, chaotic, but oh-so-rewarding world of parentrepreneurs. If you’re a resident of this world, you know all too well the juggling act that is your life.
Picture this: You're in the middle of an important business call when your little one barges in, wielding a juice box like Excalibur, seeking justice against the sibling who "stole" the last biscuit. You somehow manage to broker a peace treaty, save the business deal, and even find time to whip up dinner. But at the end of the day, you're left wondering, "Am I doing enough?" "Am I being the best parent I can be, while still striving to achieve my entrepreneurial dreams?"
Take a deep breath, make yourself a cup of tea (or pour a glass of wine/grab a beer, no judgement here), and sit down. We’re about to share the real story that might just be the answer to your worries.
What if we told you that the key to balancing this seesaw of parenthood and entrepreneurship lies in a simple two-step process? Intriguing, right?
Goal setting and
Aligning your values.
This has been a hot topic for us this month, sparked by reflections on New Year's resolutions and a big part of our recent podcast discussions. The truth is, amidst the constant demands of parenting and entrepreneurship, our resolutions can often become as elusive as mythical creatures. However, our aspirations and values serve as guiding stars, offering direction and purpose amid the chaos. Whilst it may seem you're chasing a unicorn at times, our ambitions and values are the lighthouses that guide us through the stormy seas of parentrepreneurship. They give us a sense of direction and purpose, and remind us what we're striving for amidst all the nappy changes and business calls.
So, let's embark on this journey of self-discovery together to craft a business model that screams YOU! On the way, you might even stumble upon that mythical land where dishes do clean themselves (if you do, please let us know how to find it!)!
First, unleash your inner Socrates and start asking some tough questions. Grab your favourite superhero mug of coffee and have a heart-to-heart with yourself. What are your core personal values? Honesty? Empathy? Resilience? As a parent, what values do you want to pass on to your children? Remember, you're not just creating a business legacy here, but a moral legacy too. Imagine if you could harness the power of your parental values to supercharge your business goals?
Once you have your list, try to connect each value with a ‘why’. Why is this specific principle important to you? Is it because of an event or person that influenced you? This exercise will help tie your values to your emotions, making them more real, more tangible. For example, why is it you set up your business (or why do you want to start)? Identify what's truly important to you. Is it family time, financial security, creating positive societal impact, or perhaps, a perfect blend of all three?
Now that you've dug deep and unearthed your core values, it's time for some creative fusion. How can you thread these values into your business goals? Let's say one of your core values is empathy. How about designing a customer service model that puts empathy at its heart? Or, if resilience is your mantra, you could create a business strategy that thrives on adaptability and bouncing back stronger from setbacks.
By integrating your personal values into your business goals, you're not just creating another company; you're crafting a unique brand identity that reflects your inner superhero. Customers today crave authenticity, and what's more authentic than a business that’s a living, breathing extension of its creator's values and passions?
But hold on to your superhero capes, parentrepreneurs! This process is more of a marathon than a sprint. You'll need to constantly revisit and realign your business goals with your personal values as they evolve. As a parent, you know that every milestone your child achieves reshapes your perspective. Similarly, every business achievement or setback will refine your entrepreneurial values.
Let's take a look at some well known parentrepreneurs who have successfully aligned their business goals with their values;
First off, we have Sarah Blakely, the founder of Spanx and a mother of four. She didn't just shape the bodies of millions of women around the globe with her revolutionary shapewear; she reshaped the entrepreneurial world by setting an outstanding example of a successful parentrepreneur. With her values rooted in promoting body positivity and self-confidence, she scaled new heights in the business world, ensuring her family values never took a backseat. Blakely made time to drop her kids off at school every day, embodying her belief in the importance of family time.
Then we have the inspiring story of Jessica Alba" the actress turned business mogul and mother of three. She founded the Honest Company with the aim of creating safe and natural products for children - a goal directly influenced by her role as a parent. Striking a balance between her role as a CEO and a mom, Alba has shown that parentrepreneurs can indeed have the best of both worlds.
Last, but certainly not least, is Mark Zuckerberg, the Facebook co-founder and father of two. Zuckerberg ensures his company's goal of connecting people worldwide aligns with his personal values of fostering open communication and promoting understanding. As a parent, Zuckerberg took 2 months parental leave following the birth of his first daughter, setting a strong example for his employees and underlining family values. At the time he said "At Facebook, we offer four months of maternity and paternity leave because studies show that when working parents take time to be with their newborns, it’s good for the entire family. And I’m pretty sure the office will still be standing when I get back”
In a nutshell, these parent entrepreneurs are rewriting the guidebook on juggling business and family life. They are aligning their business goals with their values, proving that you can indeed have your cake (or in this case, business) and eat it too. So the next time you're caught in the whirlwind of work and parenting, remember these parentrepreneurs, because if they can do it, so can you! If you'd like some help to gain clarity on your goals and values please get in touch via firstname.lastname@example.org or book a discovery call here.