When I first started this blog almost seven years ago it was very focussed on promoting mums like myself who were running their own businesses, along the way that seems to have got lost and my mum in business features diminished. Today I am relaunching that feature because I want to do what I can to help other mums that are running their own business because every single one of us deserves to be a huge success no matter what we choose to do.
So this morning we welcome the lovely Emma to the blog. Emma has very kindly offered one of her gorgeous blankets as a giveaway prize so make sure you read to the end to find out how you can win that.
Who are you?
Emma Macdonald – A thirty something mum living in Edinburgh, balancing business and family life, and loving it (most of the time)!
When did you establish your business?
Fergus started his original business back in 2004, but it wasn’t until October 2014 that we transformed the company and launched our joint ventures and passion projects: The Tartan Blanket Co. and Kilt Society.
What made you start your own business?
Three years ago I was living down in London, having just married my now husband Fergus while working as footwear buyer for a big retailer and Fergus was remotely running a kilt and pewter business based in Edinburgh. After many nights of discussing our ideal lifestyle, we decided that the best way we could achieve that would be to leave London, move to Edinburgh and go into business together. We felt this would give us the opportunity to work in the industry we love, while having the flexibility to raise a family the way we wanted.
What do you love about working for yourself?
I love the flexibility and unlimited possibilities that working for yourself offers. I think being able to have a family without feeling that it might limit your career and progression is, unfortunately, quite rare for woman in many industries. This is something I am keen to promote in our company, as having that balance and support is so important in making people feel valued and motivated.
Is there anything you do not like about working for yourself?
One thing I found hard, being very career driven, was that when you work for yourself, no one is there to praise and promote you when you’re doing well. As the company leader, you are the one who has to keep everyone motivated. You reward others successes and you deal with any problems, but you rarely stop and think ‘wow look what I’ve done’. Luckily I have Fergus there to bounce ideas off and we made a pact to remember to praise and motivate each other on a regular basis, which really helps.
Is there anything you would go back and do differently if you could?
Not really. I used to think maybe we should had gone into business together sooner, so we would have had more time to really focus on the business, before starting a family. However, I feel part of the reason we were able to grow the business so quickly and successfully, is due to the knowledge and skills I gained in my previous career, which I was then able to bring to the company.
What advice would you give to a Mum considering starting her own business?
Dream big, think small. I have talked to so many people who say they would love to start their own business, but feel like it’s this huge unachievable dream, and are overwhelmed thinking about where to start. You need to be passionate and excited about starting your own business, and have dreams of where it could take you, but you also need to be realistic about how you are going to get there. There is never a perfect time to make a serious life change, such as starting your own business and it is always going to be scary, but if you want it to happen, you need to make it happen. So sit down and say ‘what am I going to do this week to make that happen’. Take your dream and break it down to a plan of achievable goals that will get you to where you want to be in the next year, or 5 years, but the sooner you start the sooner you will be living your dream.
As I said at the beginning Emma is very kindly giving away this beautiful Wool Picnic Blanket in Cerise Herringbone to one of my very lucky readers. All you need to do to enter is complete the Rafflecopter below. The winner will be notified by email on the 20th August 2017. Good luck x