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Ultimate Balance for Moms

Contributor ,

tís an age-old debate: Should mothers stay home to raise their children or place them in daycare to enter the workforce and help support the family?

There has never been a definitive answer, and probably never will be a solution thatís right for every family. But, thanks to modern technology, we now have a third option; one that seems to strike the most balance between working outside the home and staying home to raise children.

In years past, our options were limited to either-or. The most balance we could find was taking a part-time position, so that we could stay at home with our children some of the time, while they spent the rest of the time in a daycare setting or with a close friend or relative while mom worked.

There are a few potential problems with this scenario. Many part-time positions involve evening and weekend hours, which can take away from quality family time. They also typically donít pay well, often barely covering the cost of daycare, making it seem silly to bother in the first place. Probably most importantly, itís difficult to find a part-time position that utilizes your talents and skills. While some may argue that this age-old debate is centered around whatís best for your children, itís also true that many moms struggle with the decision about returning to work for other reasons. While they want to be there for their children, they also really enjoyed their careers and fear they will miss the mental stimulation and the feeling of self-worth that comes with having a successful career.

Itís for this group of women that the option of working from home is usually the perfect balance between the working life and the mom life: Women who were successful in their careers, but recognize the importance of being with your children when theyíre young. Itís now possible to have a thriving career while still being at home with your children, by turning your experience in the workforce, your expertise and your talents into a successful independent consulting career.

While it takes time to build a network of potential clients that keep your cash flow fairly consistent, the advantages to being able to work from home, take care of your children, and possibly make more money than you would working for one employer are well worth the time and effort it takes upfront. The options are endless; with the internet being so prevalent, your potential clients could be anywhere in the world. You can run a consulting business entirely via email and phone, without ever leaving your home. If you crave adult social interaction, you can choose to work on-site for some clients a few days a week.

Today, there are independent consultants in many fields; corporate trainers, web designers, writers, management consultants, technology professionals, and even freelance attorneys. You can turn any set of skills, or even a hidden passion that you didnít use during your years of working for an employer, into a successful consulting career. Your biggest task is to market your business and build a client base. Thanks to organizations like http://www.mbopartners.comĒ>MBO Partners, itís easier than ever to run a consulting business from home while raising your children, because working with an employer-of-record service, such as MBO, eliminates the need to set up a formal business structure, and saves valuable time by invoicing clients and handling collections on your behalf. That means moms can spend their working time on core business activities that bring revenue: marketing and client projects, and spend the rest of your day focusing on your children while someone else handles the back-office functions.

For some moms, working outside the home is the best solution for their needs, and for others, staying at home and focusing entirely on their children is the right answer. But for the rest of us, who have had successful careers, enjoy what we do for a living, and want to continue to stay engaged with their profession, freelancing and consulting provides the flexibility, earning power, and work-life balance that is perfect for our needs.

Angela Stringfellow

Angela Stringfellow is a marketing communications consultant and an MBO Partners associate. Visit their website, MBO Partners.


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