For many mums, the main reason for starting a business is to be able to spend more time with their families. But it’s very hard to run a business as mum to under-fives with no childcare at all. Fortunately, if you run a flexible business you can be more flexible with your childcare choices than most employees. Here are some helpful suggestions:
- You can choose to do a proportion of your work in the evening when the children are in bed, or some during the day if they nap. This cuts down on the number of childcare hours you need and therefore the cost. You also get to spend more time with your children when they are awake than you would if you worked nine-to-five.
- Because you can break up your working day into an hour here and an hour there, two and a half hour preschool sessions could be more practical than they might for an employee. You do need to be organised to work in such a fragmented way, though. Make a plan for your business and list the tasks you need to do each week and month. That way you can get straight to work when you do have a chance.
- Your children could be in your home, but supervised by someone else. Maybe you could get a teenage neighbour to entertain your children for a couple of hours after school? A babysitter like this is invaluable and may be available to help with school holidays or sick days if needed.
- Could you arrange to ‘swap’ children with another mum for a morning a week? She doesn’t have to be a business mum: every mum enjoys a little me-time.