Here at The Curious Life of a Mummy HQ, we are shining the spot light on Life Coach & Mum Boss Nicky Raby on her tips to being a Mumprenuer.
As a working Mama, tell us all about yourself and what you do?
Hello, I’m Nicky and I am an actor, coach, speaker, writer and mama to Oscar who is currently 15 months. Creativity runs through everything I do. I have been an actor for over 25 years and truly can’t believe I can do it for a job. Throughout the years, there has been quiet times and I am hopeless when I don’t feel proactive or productive and in control of my own destiny so I knew I needed to find solutions and strategies to help me get back in the drivers’ seat of my career.
In 2013 I qualified as a personal performance coach (life coach) and since then I have been helping other women to create their own version for their success. Many of my clients are mums who are looking to make a few tweaks in their life; starting a business, leaving their pre baby job or trying to find that elusive work/ life balance. Together we work together to create an action plan. As a busy mum myself I know the ‘wishy washy chat’ doesn’t always work so I make sure she leaves with a step by step plan to make it happen. Now I am mum, all the job titles seem to work well together and I have carved out my own niche. I know I am not one of those people who does just do one thing, so I feel very chuffed I get to have lots of fingers in lots of pies.
What do you think it takes to be a Mum Boss?
I think any woman is a mum boss. Having children is hard work (despite what the John Lewis catalogue told me, I thought I would be all tousled waves and white linen- ha!) however amazing it is. Being a mum boss is so much easier when you know what you want… what the end goal is and what your value of success is. One of my favourite books is The Big Leap (http://amzn.to/2d17bof) where he talks about staying in your zone of genius. I know I do have ‘pleaser’ tendencies so I used to be scattered and trying to be all things to all people. These days I have much better boundaries and know what I am good so stick within these realms. In order to be effective in my business, a few years ago we made some upgrades at home- getting a weekly cleaner and a weekly shop delivered. Before having a baby we would live a spontaneous, creative life where we would just live day to day. These days our time is too precious to go to the supermarket 11 times per week!
How do you turn your idea into a reality?
I get clear on my outcomes. What do I want? What is the end result? Then I try to reverse engineer the process and work back. I do lots of brainstorming and get my ideas on paper. I usually have a oodles of ideas that pop into my head around 2:13am (will I ever sleep again?!) so I make sure I write them down, even though some scribbles make absolutely no sense in the morning. Then I get help. I used to just plough on through and figure it out as I went, but these days when my time is limited, I ask for help (in person or the almighty You Tube) and get to the solution much quicker.
How do you build a business plan?
There are some fantastic templates online that will be amazing to follow especially if you are planning on pitching for investment. However don’t be afraid to have some experimental playtime in the business before you confirm everything. For example; if you want to create a food business, don’t just have the idea one day and then approach a bank the next. Take your time. Test the market. Give yourself the opportunity to play and explore the idea and see if it works. It will save you so much time and money later on. Plus if you love what you do and are selling something you are passionate about, it is more likely to work.
How do you find balance between running a business and raising a family?
My partner and I are both freelance so we are lucky that we can organise our time to both work and be with our son. A shared calendar is absolutely key because we can then get a sense of the flavour of the week and plan accordingly. I have realised I am hopeless at multi tasking so when I am in mummy mode, I prefer to be fully in it. It is full on, I’m not going to lie but also choose to always focus on the benefits rather than tricky times. If I tell myself I have too much to do or I feel stressed, it will only seem worse. I do make sure I put in lots of time for yoga, long baths and time to gormlessly stare into space!
How important is it to have a mentor or coach?
I think it is so important. Whatever you want to do, it is likely someone has done something similar before so if you can learn through their process you will probably reach your goal quicker. I pay close to attention to what my clients ask for and the popular themes we discuss and often the feedback I get is that they love that the session is time for them. She can focus on herself; to think clearly and actually have the space to do the work and write things down. Plus you gain non judgemental support and on my 3 month programme, you get accountability so you keep on track within the busy circus of life.
How do you plan your time?
I shared my weekly planning technique on a piece I wrote for Doing It For The Kids (http://www.doingitforthekids.net/little-planning-goes-long-way/) and also another useful article for The Early Hour. (http://theearlyhour.com/2016/06/06/8-ways-to-be-more-productive-in-the-evening/) The main discovery I have had over the years is to match the tasks I need to do when I work best i.e I am most creative in the mornings so I do my writing then and in the evenings I am a little brain dead so I do more simple, less taxing tasks then.
How do you motivate yourself if you have failure?
It’s tough isn’t it. I try to reflect in the moment; what happened, why it happened and what I can learn from it and then I start to scribble and figure out the next action I need to take. I don’t overwhelm myself with a big list … just the next baby step.
Do you need business training?
I am constantly learning and remain curious. I would say get the training you are missing. If you need social media training, do a course. If you need motivation, seek out a YouTube video or surround yourself with brilliant people. Don’t necessarily think you can’t transition into the next step of your career because you don’t have a degree in business.
What are your top five tips for starting a business/What are your top tips for budding Mumprenuers?
- Get clear on the idea. Know what it is and be able to summarise it in a couple of sentences.
- Follow your gut. If you are getting that feeling that you want to quit your job and do your own thing, Listen to it and then get the help to brainstorm the idea (book me if you like! 🙂 )
- You are never going to know all the answers and there is never going to be a perfect time. So just start. Take the first step. Dip your toe in and see what happens. Obviously if you are ploughing huge amounts of money into something, go slowly but surely- don’t be daft. Just keep taking action. Often ‘waiting for the perfect time’ is dressed in the outfit of fear or procrastination.
- Find your tribe. Surround yourself with brilliantly, inspiring people who ‘get it’ and support you. And if you don’t know them already, seek them out- online, at events or reach out via email. Mostly I have found people to be lovely, helpful and candid and if not, you probably don’t want that person in your tribe.
- Celebrate your successes. When running your own business, it can be easy to focus on one negative comment or someone who didn’t understand your concept when you explained it. Keep your ears open to all the good stuff that is coming your way too. The sales, the support, the feedback as it will try spur you on.
Who are your Mumspirations?
I used to look to women across the pond for many years as they seemed ahead in terms of doing ‘not just one thing’. But I am thrilled to see the Brits are now truly stepping up and being audacious in their thinking and making their rather amazing mark. I only have to scroll through my instagram feed to be inspired, motivated and proud to be part of this movement.
As a Mumprenuer where do you see yourself in five years time.
So I will be 40. I hope to have more children (may just one more if you catch me on a sleep deprived day) and a tv show that I have acted in, written and produced. We are currently saving for our dream house so would love to be in that. Plus some more books, more writing, coaching, connecting and collaborating. I feel proud to be a woman and love being part of the conversation on how we move forward in the coming years. As much as I am keen on goal setting, I love to remain open to and be grateful for every opportunity- when I stay in that headspace, it is amazing what can happen.
Nicky is a mum who offers 1:1 sessions to help you figure out your next chapter with the addition of your new role as a mum.You may want to start a business, figure how a new blend of work and home or simply figure out how you can use your talents and skills to make money and still be a present parent.Or maybe you need to figure how you can incorporate other elements? Another baby, more time for you or a sense of a little more balance.
The sessions are available in person (if London based) over the phone or over Skype/Facetime.