This post by guest blogger Moira Milligan appears in our series of tools for WAHMs and mompreneurs.
Before my first child was born, I was a workaholic for over 17 years and held various high level, and stressful, executive secretarial positions. I started my own business 15 years ago, when my kids entered junior high school.
I think today’s mompreneurs can benefit from the advice and ideas of those who have “been there, done that,” and so I offer you these pointers:
- Start slowly. Begin part-time and make sure you build your schedule to fit with things you need to do for your family. As they get used to you working, this will evolve.
- Make a room or space for your business stuff. It’s a no-go zone for the kids and husband.
- Keep good records and save all your receipts. I always recommend that my new clients file everything by month in file folders. Not all business people know accounting, so get advice from an accountant or experienced bookkeeper.
- Even if you are not able to hire a good bookkeeper to start with, keeping good records to turn over to an accountant to file your taxes will save you on fees. Doing your own taxes is not something I recommend. You need to make sure everything is covered.
- No matter what kind of a business you have, make sure you work for people you get along with and who appreciate your skills.
- Make sure you do your homework regarding your responsibilities when dealing with all levels of government In your area.
- If at all possible have your business records on a separate laptop or stand-alone computer. I have seen many clients lose all of their work if a computer virus strikes or a meltdown occurs on a computer that was used for gaming.
- Don’t be afraid to ask for advice: You’ll be surprised how much you will learn.
Above all, stay true to what you believe in and enjoy your work!
Moira Milligan is a certified public bookkeeper in Delta, BC, and a veteran mompreneur. Her areas of expertise include non-profit organizations, construction sub-trades, retail and the medical profession.
The information and tips we’re sharing in this article are meant to be a starting point for your year-end tax prep, so you can be informed and feel confident when working with your accountant. Be sure to check with a tax expert in your country or region for any specific advice you need, as each business (and tax district) is different. As our lawyers would say: “This article is for informational purposes only. It should not be considered legal or financial advice.”