Mastering the Balancing Act: Insights From Michelle Hon on Being a Mother and Entrepreneur

Being a mother and an entrepreneur at the same time can be a daunting task. You must juggle the responsibilities of caring for a child while also trying to build and manage a business. Michelle, a successful entrepreneur and mother of three, knows this all too well. In fact, it was one of the reasons why Michelle, also known as The Chill Mom, started MomBoss Academy, which teaches and empowers other mothers to grow their own businesses.

Over the years, she has learned valuable lessons on how to balance her role as a mother and a business owner, and has found ways to turn the challenges into opportunities for growth and success. Here are some of the key insights that Michelle has gained from her experiences as a mother and entrepreneur.

Believing in her own ideas

While Michelle has run various businesses for around 12 years, she was in full-time employment before that. The go-getter always had plenty of ideas on how to improve the ways that things could be done, but often saw her suggestions shot down by management as they were “too out there”.

“Even if it [got implemented], it was very slow. I’m a very impatient person,” she laughed.

Michelle didn’t want to see her ideas and strategies go to waste, desiring to instead carry them out and test them. She felt that starting her own business and running it as she saw fit would be the best way forward.

Initially starting out as a blog on motherhood and business, Michelle’s business eventually grew to include MomBoss Academy, which offers a multitude of services from online programmes and memberships, to digital marketing and social media services. Through her business, Michelle “help[s] moms fulfil their dreams by creating a purposeful source of income for themselves”.

As her type of business did not require much capital, Michelle said she was able to turn a profit from day one.

Read more: When Should You Start Your Own Business?  

She takes challenges in her stride, viewing them as “normal” and simply as obstacles to overcome in pursuit of her goals. Focused on developing her ideas, she said that doubts never crossed her mind.

“If it doesn’t work out, what’s the worst [that could happen]? You just go back to square one and start again.”

Being a mom and a boss

When it comes to double-hatting as a mother and business owner, Michelle takes a long-term view. She advises mothers to recognise that there are different stages to motherhood that they will progress through as their children get older. As a child grows and becomes more independent, the amount of time that mothers will need to dedicate to them will also decrease. For example, Michelle uses the time when her children are in school to work on her business.

Regardless of the stage of motherhood you may be at, owning your business also grants you the flexibility to choose how to allocate your time. It can enable you to find the “balance” between business and family that works for you. As she points out, balance doesn’t have to be a matter of splitting your time equally between the two.

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Changing societal expectations

Michelle acknowledges that the fact that only 26% of businesses in Singapore are owned by women probably indicates how in Asia, traditional expectations of women being responsible for caring for the children and family are still prevalent.

However, she encourages women to not be constrained, as society and technology are changing, making it very feasible to start a business while juggling the responsibilities of motherhood. It’s possible to have both a business and a family, and enjoy the best of both worlds.

Mothers should also “take [their] own time” and not feel pressured to rush when it comes to managing their own business. At later stages of parenting, say when the children are older and they have more time to themselves, they can choose to take their businesses further. But even if they are not there yet, they can already capitalise on the flexibility of being their own boss to run their business based on their timetable.

This feature was part of Planner Bee’s SG Woman In Charge series, where we spotlight female entrepreneurs and the stories behind their businesses. Subscribe to our YouTube channel for more of such videos!

Read more: Former Pop-Star, Now Entrepreneur, Wife and Mother of Two: Race Wong Is Doing It All

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