Here at More than a Mum, we are passionate about women being brilliant Mums and rediscovering themselves as women. For many women, motherhood means a break in career. We may have given up work to enable us to stay at home with our children; we may have given up work as the hours/travel/lifestyle were not compatible with family life; we may have given up work because the cost of childhood and the salary paid did not add up.
For many women this time out of the work place is great. It means you can spend valuable time with you children. It can mean you have a whole new perspective on life and what is really important to you. However it may also leave a hole in the finances or you may just miss working. Home selling can be one of the ways in which many Mums chose to solve this problem. In a series of posts over the next few Fridays, we are going to explore a range of home selling jobs which some Mums have found to enable them to have a work life balance, without having to stake everything in starting their own business or spend thousands on training and qualifications.
For the first of these posts, we interviewed Emma Lovelock. Emma is Mum to a 3 year old and is an independent consultant for Pampered Chef. Here she tells us about why the work suits her in her role both as a Mum and as a woman.
1. What is your career background originally?
I worked in the hotel industry prior to meeting The Pampered Chef as an Events Organiser initially then as a Wedding Co-ordinator. Immediately prior to Pampered Chef I was also running my own Wedding Planning company whilst on Maternity leave from the hotel.
2. When did you decide to start working for Pampered Chef?
June of 2009 after attending a couple of cooking shows.
3. What prompted you to work for a home selling business?
I liked the flexibility it offered. My daughter was 6 months old at the time and the thought of going back to full time work was filling me with dread, this seemed like a great option to try and bridge the gap. It was – I never went back to the hotel!
4. What prompted you to work for this business in particular?
I loved the products, and wanted all of them in my kitchen – joining the business seemed like the easiest way to get them free or cheaper. The kit had £350 worth of products in for £97 at the time and I thought it was a worth a go just to get the products, once I was a consultant I realised there was so many more benefits that I wasn’t even aware of!
5. What are the greatest advantages of your work?
The social aspect of my job – I spend most of my days with my 3 year old so going out a couple of nights a week and having a laugh with other grown ups doesn’t really feel like work. I’ve made so many new friends (outside of the mum circle) through my job and genuinely love what I do.
Obviously the money, I’m working part-time hours with full-time pay.
I now own everything in the catalogue and haven’t paid full price for a single item, in fact most of it I’ve earned for free!
I can now cook! – I never had much confidence in the kitchen before I joined Pampered Chef, I now have access to hundreds of fail-safe recipes and high quality products to cook with, I now love being the hostess for parties!!
The free holidays! – I have been to Athens, Lake Maggorie- Italy, and most recently Dubai since I started working with The Pampered Chef – all 5 star luxury and free for working hard in my job – I never had targets that were really achievable before in my old job, but then the prize was never as tempting either!
6. Are there any disadvantages?
Because there are no boundaries to our working area sometimes I take cooking shows on that are a bit further afield than I’d like to travel, so it can be quite a late night by the time I get home. But that is my choice and I don’t do these very often - I could stick to more local shows if I wanted and some consultants choose to do daytime shows.
Because you are working for yourself you need to be able to push yourself to actually work, it can be quite tempting to sit back and wait for the bookings to come to you – but they don’t. Although when you do push yourself the results can be huge and its very rewarding to know you did it all yourself.
7. How has your life/outlook changed since doing this kind of work?
Its incredible, my daughter goes to preschool 5 mornings a week now, so I do my phone calls, admin bits and housework in the morning if I need to and then have all afternoon to spend quality time with her every day. I’m a stay at home mum and a working mum – I get to pick and choose which I want to be and when and that works for me.
I can not imagine going back to the daily 9-5 type of job.
8. Is this a temporary job for you until your children are older or a lifelong career?
When I first joined it was definitely temporary I only planned on doing the 6 shows I needed to do to keep my kit. But before I knew it I had a flourishing business and now I plan on working my way up the Pampered Chef ladder and having a very profitable career – I don’t think many other business would give me the opportunity of earning upwards of £3k a month after 5 years and no previous formal training!
This is the first of a series of Friday posts which will give you an insight into a range of home selling and flexible working opportunities which Mums are running. Next Friday we will be talking to a Mum who runs a Small Print jewellery franchise.
Do you have a story to share about your own flexible working solutions? If you do, we’d love to hear from you. Email us the answers to the questions we asked Emma at firstname.lastname@example.org
OTHER POSTS IN THE SERIES