One of the most beautiful gifts I received, after the Baby was born, was a pink fleece personalized blanket custom-made for my delicious newborn. My friend Mike gave it to me and it’s been a staple in her crib ever since. I later found out that the gorgeous blanket was created by Admiral Road, a successful company run by two entrepreneurial moms, Amy Ballon and Danielle Botterell.
Ballon and Botterell have just written, Mom Inc., a comprehensive handbook to being a mompreneur. Along with telling the inspiring story of their own business, the authors share an immensely detailed, thoughtful guide to setting up your own business, while having and raising children. In particular, Mom Inc. speaks to those moms who want to be available to their kids but who don’t want to give up the challenge and reward of working.
Once I started reading Mom Inc., I couldn’t put it down. I felt inspired and empowered by the possibilities of entrepreneurship. Having a successful business, while still enjoying the flexibility of picking up your kids from school, and being there for homework and activities – that’s the stuff dreams are made of. However, as much as I fantasize about having my own business, I’m not a business-y person, and that whole world seems so daunting.
That’s where Mom Inc. really dazzles. In a warm, encouraging tone (yet very realistic and grounded), Ballon and Botterell provide a thorough business primer in mompreneurship: they talk about the importance of business planning, marketing, goal-setting and financial management in an accessible, not-at-all scary way. The authors know their stuff – both have MBA’s and worked previously in high-profile downtown jobs. They illustrate not only an intricate understanding of business, but also a lot of heart.
What sets Mom Inc. apart from other business books, is that Ballon and Botterell speak directly to our concerns as moms. They talk about childcare, maintaining your relationship with your spouse, how a partnership can affect a friendship, and how a mompreneur relies on family and friends for support. They talk about the risks of starting your own business, what happens if it fails, and the impact it can have on your social life, family and self-esteem.
Throughout Mom Inc., the authors use real-life examples of mompreneurs, sharing quotes and stories of how these women overcame challenges. I loved these examples as they added multiple perspectives, and gave a real voice to the message.
I finished Mom Inc. feeling like anything is possible. That’s a good feeling.