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 our pleasure to introduce Penelope Magoulianiti, entrepreneur, speaker and Author of Women, Motherhood and Independence – A Guide to Financial Freedom, Beauty & Confidence After Childbirth.
How and when did you come up with the idea for your business and what inspired you to become self-employed?
I decided to become self-employed after the bail-in that happened in Cyprus in March 2013. I used to work at the Private Banking of Laiki Bank when it happened and even though I had a good position at the bank, I decided that my health and well-being were far more important than having a ‘secured’ income.
When I gave my resignation, I had no idea what to do at first but I knew that I’d always loved personal development and I knew I would love to be able to pass the knowledge I gained throughout the years.
What business achievement are you most proud of?
My book. When I decided to write my book ‘Women, Motherhood & Independence’, my intention was to help other women who felt drained and overwhelmed to find ways to make their life a bit easier. That’s why my book is a guide on how to simplify your life and offers ways to implement steps so you can start enjoying your life more.
A lot of new start-up businesses run out of steam when the going gets tough. Was there ever a time when you doubted the success of your business?
Many times, there were situations when I didn’t know how to proceed, I had no idea how to do stuff. I got so discouraged discovering that there were so many promises being made by people who had no real intention of keeping them.
There were times that I cried and thought of quitting. But then, after my anger and frustration subsided, I thought of my real motivation for the things I do: my two kids. Everything I do, I do for them. To give them a better chance in life, to teach them to follow their dreams. How was I supposed to pass the message of never giving up, when I was doing exactly the opposite?
When your “Why” is big enough, you will always find a way to move forward and never be discouraged by obstacles and failures. Success never comes without failure. Every success story has a huge failure or many failures behind it.
Being your own boss means there are no mentors to learn from. Who do you go to for business advice?
I have many mentors. I have a habit of reading a book for 30 minutes every day and to listen to audios while I am driving. I keep educating myself by reading books, doing online courses and attending seminars in Cyprus and abroad. I also belong to a close mastermind group where all the members of the group are working together, and we keep each other accountable to achieve our goals.
Nowadays, education is possible from the comfort of your home. If we want to progress in life and achieve the life we want, we need to start focusing on the things that are going to move us forward in life and stop doing the things that are holding us back.
What have you learned about yourself since becoming self-employed?
I became more determined and focused. I have also learnt to concentrate my energy on the actions that are going to bring me closer to my desired outcome. and stop doing 1000 things that are going to take me nowhere. I’ve discovered a new Penelope, the Penelope that never gives up no matter how many failures and disappointments she has to face.
Can you give our working mums some tips for achieving a good work/life balance?
Tip #1 – know your outcome – get clear on what you want to achieve, or how you want to live your life
Tip #2 – For a week, write on a piece of paper everything you do within the day. Even the smallest task possible. At the end of the week divide a piece of paper into three columns: Important, Delegate, Delete.
Then go through your list and allocate each task to the three columns.
The ‘Deletes’ you forget. Delegate the ‘Delegates’ and make a plan how to achieve the ‘Importants’.
Tip #3 – Concentrate each day on the 5 most important tasks that are going to help you to achieve your desired outcome. These five things must work towards helping you achieve the things that are in your “important column”
I have created the Jugglers Task List for Mums which I am using daily, and it has helped me double my productivity.
If you could give one piece of advice to an aspiring woman entrepreneur starting out today, what would it be?
Get clear on what you want to achieve, do your research and then create a plan on how you wish to move forward. Don’t expect to perfect your plan before you start. Start any way and take corrective actions as you progress.
Have faith in yourself and in your capabilities, and keep learning.
What are your future plans for your business?
Next month I am launching my online program called “21-Day Transformation Program for a Balanced Life” and I’ve started working towards my new book, which hopefully will be ready by the end of this year. My company’s name is W.O.W. Education and we are helping women to create success based on their own terms through our online programs, live seminars and workshops, books and coaching services.
What differentiates W.O.W. Education from anything else in the local market?
The techniques and principles I am teaching are not taken from a text book. Everything I say I have practiced it myself. I’ve devoted hundreds of hours in studying and applying these techniques and I’ve invested thousands of Euros to be trained by the best mentors abroad and become an expert in my field.
I am Anthony Robbins Mastery Univercity Graduate, I’ve been trained by the likes of Anthony Robbins, Brendon Burchard, Bo Eason, T.Harv Eker, Marie Forleo, Daren Hardey, Jon Butcher, Cloe Madanes and many more.
But most of all I have worked in the corporate world for many years to know first-hand how it is like to be taken for granted, not to have a voice, to have other people try to gain control over your life and finances. I am also a mother and during the day I am wearing many hats, so I do know what it feels like to feel trained, overwhelmed, not to have the energy to devote time for you.
What value do you feel your services offer to your clientele?
I show my clients ways to make their life easier and more enjoyable and pursue the things that truly matter to them. If you could live your day the way you want it, if you could take time to relax and re-charge, if you could choose what you want to do or with whom you would like to spend time with, wouldn’t you do it? I am showing ways to do just that.
Penelope Magoulianiti is an author and entrepreneur based in Cyprus, Europe. Her passionate mission is to empower women and help them grow and thrive in the modern world, freeing their full potential.An inspirational and engaging individual, Penelope connects with audiences across the globe helping each person to make a positive change.
Penelope also runs two businesses and she is a published author of Women, Motherhood & Independence, which has been translated in 3 different languages. In order to keep sharing her ideas and create positive discussions, she created workshops and she is giving many talks.
She is also one of the co-founders of YinAlithea Cyprus Women’s Conference, as well as the creator of online programs. These are amazing platforms for women to get together, share their stories and change their lives for the better!
Penelope is also a wife and loving mother. She enjoys spending quality time with her two young kids and balances her life with her work, believing that every woman is unique and deserves to feel truly special.
Working in the corporate world for 20 years gave Penelope the knowledge but also the drive to follow her dreams and create a different career path for her and her family.
“Don’t be afraid to dream. Dare to work on your dreams and just take action.”
Penelope has been featured in many magazines and has also given interviews on Radios and TV. She was also one of the finalist at Business Women of the Year Awards 2016.
You can find more about Penelope at: