Who are you?
I am Julie Batten, mum of two – 6 year old Seb and 3 year old Freya (aka Moo moo)
When did you establish your business?
I started Mini Moo’s in February last year (2012) and completed the acquisition of Sleepytot in November (2012)
What made you start your own business?
Since the birth of both of my children I have been desperate (like a lot of Mums) to find a way to make money but still be there for my children when they need me. I also wanted to take control of my own life and not have to answer to anyone else all of the time! I have worked shifts for 9 years and my work life balance was completely out of control and I decided that the only way that I could get it back to what I wanted was to take control myself.
What do you love about working for yourself?
I love the freedom it gives me which ensures that I never miss a school play or sports day (or coffee/lunch with the other mums!). Plus the fact that I can arrange my working day around any other plans I may have. I love the challenge of being responsible for the management and growth of the business, although it is a steep learning curve and I still have a lot to learn. I also love the fact that I can pretty much work from anywhere as long as I have my phone and access to e-mails!
Is there anything you do not like about working for yourself?
At this stage I do absolutely everything myself so this can feel like a burden and sometimes I feel that there are not enough hours in the day! I often find myself working late into the evenings, particularly when the children are at home as there is only so much I can get done when they are around. It is also a little frustrating that I can’t really take periods of time off as there is no one else to do the work.
Is there anything you would go back and do differently if you could?
Yes, I would have done it years ago!
What advice would you give to a Mum considering starting her own business?
Don’t let your concerns or insecurities hold you back. I never would have believed that I would be able to run a business, but I am doing it. I only had a very limited amount of money to start up with so I continued in my ‘day job’ for quite a few months so that I could put all the profits back in to grow the company, this enabled me to acquire and merge in another business allowing me to quit the day job so it pays to be a little bit patient! Networking is a fantastic way to help you learn about areas that you are unsure about and increase your confidence, there are so many other mums out there that have done so much and have so much advice to offer!
Julie is giving away one of her fantastic Sleepytots, just enter by filling in the Rafflecopter below! Good luck xx