Every few months this conversation gets going on Twitter and EVERYONE has something to say about it. You know the one.
Goes something like this.
A MOM-preneur and a MOMMY blogger walk into a bar..... ('cause we are allowed to go out you know!!)
...cute guy hits on said MOM-preneur and asks what she does for a living.
What do you think she says?
I am pretty darn sure that nowhere in that conversation is she going to mention the word MOMpreneur to said cute guy. I can guarantee that it would be more along the lines of, "I run my own e-commerce site, I am a professional writer, I am a jewelery/fashion designer. I am an ENTREPRENEUR!"
I admit that this whole "mompreneur" topic is a total hot button for me and this morning I crashed a twitter convo that @MOMMagRocks, @Chris_Eh_Young and@Modern_Mama where having about it. I personally do not like the terminology and the MOM-ifying of everything related to women in business who also happen to be moms and said as much. To which Connie replied:
And she is not wrong.
I come from a corporate sales and marketing background and have worked in retail and pharmaceutical sales for most of my adult life. I admit that I never had any aspirations to become an entrepreneur before I had my children. Having them and then being at home with them became a priority for our family, one that we did not quite anticipate. So yes, I left a very lucrative position, a nice salary, a company car and multiple other career perks for life as a stay-at-home mom. (And just so you know, I would do it again in a heartbeat!)
But I soon realized that part of me was not being fulfilled. Part of me needed to take what I was doing and what mattered most to me (being a Mama), combine it with what I was VERY good at (sales and marketing) and come up with a fabulous business idea.
I would like to tell you that it was as easy as that and POOF! my business came to be and was an instant success. But that is not quite the true nature of entrepreneurialism (sheesh, try to say that 5 times fast)! And it is simply not true.
The Webster's Dictionary definition of an entrepreneur is this:
: one who organizes, manages, and assumes the risks of a business or enterprise(and FYI--the word mompreneur is NOT in the Webster's dictionary)
Well, this enterprise that I organize and manage has been one heck of an adventure let me tell you! There have been plenty of risks. Some have been worth it, others have cost me a lot of time and money and heartache. I have learned lessons the hard way and found incredible mentors along the way too. My business has grown and evolved tremendously in the three and a half years since it was founded. As have I, both as an entrepreneur and as a mom.
My point about the whole terminology is this. I truly feel that melding the two together demeans both roles. Perhaps not in the eyes of the #proudmompreneurs out there, and trust me, there are quite a few of them on Twitter tonight, but in the eye of the general public, the mainstream media, and the people who are not in the inner circles of the "mompreneur" world. And I think we have to remember that these people are often our target audience or potential customers and in business, perception is very much reality!
I was reminded on two separate occasions this week about something that I think is very important. At least it is for me at this very moment. Often in our lives, whether it is personal or professional, we can get caught up in our own drama, our own little worlds and our own social or professional circles. And in doing so I believe that we limit our potential. Our potential for growth, our potential for success and our potential for new and even bigger opportunities.
And this is what I believe the term "mompreneur", and even to a degree "mommy blogger", does to us. It limits us! We get pigeonholed into this neat little category that actually fails to represent the complexities of who and what we truly are!
And I know A LOT of amazing women who are incredible entrepreneurs, and also quite amazing moms to boot! The last thing I would want to see is these women not realizing their full and true potential because of a couple of silly words!
I'd love to hear what your thoughts are on this recurring topic, whether or not you are an entrepreneur or a mom!
Check out these other posts from some smart ladies on this topic: