We have many working mothers in our MiC community, whether as employees in companies or self-employed and running their own business. All have one thing in common: trying to achieve a harmonious work/life balance under sometimes very stressful circumstances.
Being your own boss however, has the added pressure of financial responsibility – when there’s no monthly income guarantee the daily challenges seem greater. On the other hand it is endlessly rewarding to be fulfilling your dreams and ambitions, and these mumpreneurs often are an inspiration to others.
Our interview blog puts the spotlight on these entrepreneurial women among us: who are they, what do they do and how do they do it.
Today, it is my pleasure to introduce Charoulla Papadopoulou (MiC nickname‘carrie’), owner of Little Kickers Cyprus, the UK’s leading toddler and pre-school football training program.
Hi Charoulla. How and when did you come up with the idea for your business and what inspired you to become self employed?
Me and my husband have been talking about bringing something to Cyprus for children for ages since there is not much to do for pre-schoolers apart from the beach etc during the summer. Little Kickers runs all year round islandwide.
What business achievement are you most proud of?
The fact that you get to meet new kids and new parents all the time and making a change in kids’ lives! We have 60 children in the matter of 4 months and 1 nursery with 37 children at the moment!
A lot of new start-up businesses run out of steam when the going gets tough. Was there ever a time when you doubted yourself?
To be honest with you we have only been running for 4 months the beginning is always difficult until you manage to set your ground.
Being your own boss means there are no mentors to learn from. Who do you go to for business advice?
The support from the franchise has been amazing from day one and we can always count on them for advice.
What have you learned about yourself since becoming self employed?
It’s a bit difficult not knowing whether you will have an income at the end of the month but you need to be strong and you will make it!
Do you feel you have achieved a good work/life balance?
I am positive that this was the right decision for me more time to spend with my daughter, and being my own boss.
If you could give one piece of advice to an aspiring ‘Mumpreneur’ starting out today, what would it be?
Hang in there if you believe in your self you will do great!:)
What are your future plans for your business?
Our plans for 2012 are to fill up our existing classes and work with more schools and hopefully by next year we can manage to have 20 classes and 10 schools.(currently running 12 classes). Also be involved in anything child associated such as charities, kids events and festivals!
Thank you very much for your time. Best wishes for continued success and happiness, both in your professional and private life.