by Sacha Strebe/ reprinted from MyDomaine.com
Launching your own company can be a daunting experience. How do you turn a simple idea into a successful money-making business? While the creative and practical elements of running a business come naturally to most—it is your passion, after all—it's the strategy, planning, and financial aspects that usually get left behind. The confidence gap doesn't help, either. A quick poll of women by Fidelity Investments found "just 47% are confident talking about money and investments with a financial professional." It would be so much easier if we could just earn money in our sleep, but if you really want to turn your passion project into a million-dollar business, you have develop some key financial habits. We spoke to some successful mompreneurs who did just that. These women made their creative dreams a reality, all with little ones in tow.
Amber Lewis, Founder, Amber Interiors
Courtesy of Amber Interiors
Los Angeles–based interior designer Amber Lewis of Amber Interiors is a MyDomaine favorite for her signature California-eclectic look with a bohemian edge. With 10 years of design experience and travel behind her, she has developed a knack for discovering extraordinary pieces, mixing vintage style with a modern attitude. When she's not working, she's enjoying time out with her fun and full-of-life daughter, Gwyneth.
Amber Lewis: "One of the most important money lessons I have learned as a small business owner is the theory 'You have to spend to make money.' When I was really starting to see the growth of my company, instead of making a larger salary myself, I decided to forfeit my own income and hire more employees so I could take on more jobs. We were getting more and more inquiries, and I just calculated that if the business does better, I eventually will do better—we all will—but without the manpower, I couldn't do any of it. I am so glad I made that decision, because now I have an incredible and big design team all getting salaries and health benefits. It's all about the calculated risks."
Chriselle Lim, Founder and CEO, The Chriselle Factor
Chriselle kicked off her career as a wardrobe stylist working with prominent fashion titles and celebrities. But in 2011, she made the entrepreneurial leap to launch her own business, The Chriselle Factor. Her website, YouTube account, and social media channels are a stylish mix of daily musings and personal style that empower and inspire women all over the world. Now Chriselle fuses her professional life with motherhood, after giving birth to her beautiful daughter, Chloe.
Chriselle Lim: “We all know that being prepared with finances is important, but for all my mompreneurs, I can’t emphasize the importance of being at least six months ahead with your personal finances, just in case there is a low earning period with your business. It’s great to think positive, but it’s also crucial to be prepared for the worst-case scenario.”
Tanesha Awasthi, Founder, Girl With Curves
In 2011, Tanesha Awasthi launched her own inspirational style and beauty blog, Girl With Curves. In just a few years, she has built it into one of the world’s most influential fashion and beauty sites for plus-size women. In fact, Tanesha says she's one of the first digital influencers to penetrate fashion's size barrier and work directly with brands in both the straight and plus-size space as a stylist, model, consultant, and creative director. On top of that, Tanesha is a wife and mother to her son Narayan.
Tanesha Awasthi: “The best financial advice I can give to mompreneurs is to manage your time wisely because time is money. Running a business, being a wife and a mother of two—an almost-2-year-old boy and a 3-year-old English bulldog—my time is extremely valuable, so setting a schedule for work hours and family time is ultra-important. Since my business is online, it's easy to lose track of time and end up on social media all day without realizing that I'm not giving my son, husband, or fur baby enough attention. So what I've done is figured out specific hours of the day that are the most valuable to my business by analyzing website and social media activity.
Doing this has allowed me to maximize the 'time is money' ideology. By figuring out what hours I should actually be online posting and interacting with readers and what hours are okay to disconnect, I can determine the most valuable use of my time and how to maximize earnings. While no amount of money is worth missing those precious moments that only come once, there are ways to make sure you aren't neglecting your passion, your business, or your family.”
James Kicinski-McCoy, Co-Founder and Editor, MOTHER and Bleubird
Courtesy of Bleubird
Based in Nashville, Tennessee, James Kicinski-McCoy spends her days surrounded by her four children and supportive husband while she works from her stylish home office writing and editing MOTHER (an über-stylish site for moms that she co-founded with Katie Hintz-Zambrano) and her own lifestyle blog, Bleubird.
James Kicinski-McCoy: “Firstly, always save your money. Put away at least 20% each month into a savings account for the future. Secondly, I’ve learned that for any business that’s looking to grow, some form of reinvestment is absolutely necessary. I firmly believe the adage that you have to spend money to make money. For me, this means constantly looking for new ways to creatively market my brands to stay ahead of the curve."
Laura Wiertzema, Co-Owner, Ascott + Hart
Laura is the epitome of cool. The mother of two has killer style that she documents on her popular Instagram account, Ascot Friday, with a fanbase of more than 70,000 followers. She is also the co-owner of online store Ascot + Hart, showcasing hand-picked pieces that mimic the treasure hunt at a "super-rad estate sale or thrift shop."
Laura Wiertzema: “My No. 1 piece of financial advice is to hire a good accountant. I've learned to let go and seek help in areas of the business that are not my strong point. This allows me to focus on the things I'm good at.”
Learn how to become a financial whiz with our top apps and budget books below.