On my own childcare business journey I have faced many obstacles along the way! And in helping other childcare owners for the last decade or so I’ve been able to observe what the four biggest challenges are that get in the way of success.
I’m going to share them with you in the hope that, because you have a heads up, you can overcome these challenges more effectively and efficiently!
So what exactly are the 4 biggest challenges you’ll face as a childcare business owner?
Read on to find out what they are and how you can successfully deal with them!
Challenge #1: FEAR
One of the biggest challenges I faced when starting my childcare business was F.E.A.R. Not just your average “oh no, I’m scared of the snake” kinda fear. I’m talking about what F.E.A.R. actually is! And that’s: False Expectation About Reality.
You see, Ninja, what happens with FEAR is your brain magnifies it. Imagine blowing something up, totally out of proportion! That’s EXACTLY what our brains are hard-wired to do. It’s how we survived as a human race! This makes the “risk” feel so much bigger than it actually is and you get more anxious, more concerned and more scared. It does this to protect you.
And I get the fear too. Perhaps a fear of the unknown, the uncertain. Fear of failure, and fear of judgement. But when that niggling little voice raises its ugly head, this is when you need to trust yourself, believe in yourself and have the courage to take the uncomfortable action. Because the other side of fear is magnificent.
Take that one teeny tiny step. By doing that, you can move to the other side of fear… and let me tell ya – the view is glorious!
Challenge #2: SELF-BELIEF
This challenge is one I come across all the time. Self-belief is something we all need to nurture within ourselves. No one else can give it to you. It’s like a muscle that needs flexing. You’ve gotta warm it up to get the most out of it!
So, you’ve been thinking about starting a childcare business…Actually, you’ve been more than thinking about it: you KNOW deep down that you WANT to do this.
For me, it wasn’t just about wanting to, I had to. I was an unemployed single mom who had no choice but to provide for my children. But I was scared. I wasn’t sure if I could do it. However, I made a promise to myself, and that promise was that I would never again work for someone else. I had to make it work and I had to believe in myself.
You need to make that promise to yourself, Ninja. In order to live up to that promise you need to BELIEVE in YOU.
Take a moment right now…ready? Close your eyes. Imagine you start your childcare business. Really visualize it! It’s amazing, right?! And then picture yourself opening another daycare centre. Suddenly you’ve got multiple childcare centres…are you feeling this?!
Now you have the flexibility and freedom you’ve been craving. You’ve got the success, and it’s all down to you. Because you’re AWESOME. Are you seeing this? This is you, and you can do this, I know you can. You have to believe in yourself. You got this, and I got you!
Challenge #3: MONEY
One of the biggest reasons I hear from ambitious women about what’s holding them back is: “I don’t have the money”. Ninjas, this is a safety excuse. I get it, I do. This helps you to protect yourself. Sometimes it’s a genuine problem – putting food on the table and a roof over our heads comes first, right? However in most cases this isn’t what’s actually going on.
So I want to ask you something. Remember the last time you downloaded something free? It might’ve been a free e-book, a course, whatever it was. Did you complete it? Did you give you it 100% of your efforts? NO!
I can tell you the very simple reason why. It’s because you didn’t invest in it.
Now let me ask you something else: what is NOT GETTING STARTED costing you? Ninjas, I had no money when I first set out as a business owner. Nada. Zilch. Zero! I learned all the tricks to get this thing going from home on a shoestring budget. I made small investments and made sure I got a good return on my money. The old adage, “you’ve got to speculate to accumulate” is famous for a reason, after all!
As such, investing in myself now has become the single most important place my money goes these days. You’ll see. For now, just remember you get in life what you focus on. So I highly recommend starting to focus on abundance, learning and taking action. You got this!
Challenge #4: IMPOSTER SYNDROME
Have you heard about this buzz word? Imposter Syndrome? In nutshell, it means: I don’t think I’m QUALIFIED or CREDIBLE or GOOD ENOUGH to do this. Are you kidding Ninja?
Are you a go-getter? Do you love and have a passion for children? Perhaps you’re a mom too? Then you can absolutely do this! Imposter syndrome happens when you spend too much time looking around you at what everyone else is doing. Stay in your lane. In fact, SLAY in your lane!
And sometimes it happens when you’re trying to reach everyone and as a result don’t actually connect with anyone. So narrow down your target focus. Think about who you’re trying to reach to grow your business. In your daycare, which kids do you want in there? Where will you find their parents? How can you help these parents? What problem are you solving for them? What will make your childcare centre unique and stand out? By narrowing this down, you’ll feel more confident and passionate to do this!
Another thing you can do to combat the imposter syndrome, is join our Club Membership. When you’re walking this journey alone it can be very overwhelming. But when you’re in a family with women on the same road as you, you will feel confident and empowered! Let’s do this! Sisterhood for the win!
I’d love to know which of the 4 biggest challenges you’ve found the hardest so far?
If you are ready to get to the other side of fear and get your childcare centre started click here and join The Club membership – a place for childcare business owners to come together, be inspired, learn and get empowered!
Interested in becoming more involved in the community and to grow your business? Join us for more tips on how to make your childcare business the success it deserves to be! Or if you prefer Instagram, we share ideas and tips there too! We’re an army of childcare professionals who are sharing ninja-sharp skills to transform our businesses into childcare empires! This is Childcare Ownership all Grownup!
Have you been feeling quite “meh” recently? It seems to be a common theme in the online space and I’ve heard it a few times in my Facebook group. So, I want to encourage you to keep moving. Take that next step. Keep on taking action.
It’s hard to keep momentum when the world around us feels a little unstable and out of our control. But it’s not impossible to make progress. So let’s take some control back!
In this blog post, I’m going to share some hard-learned wisdom with you and some tips about how you can keep moving and keep motivated.
Why you might be feeling “blah” right now
First thing’s first: we need to acknowledge the massive year we’ve just experienced. Many of us have had our children at home full time, managing their learning, caring for them and trying to juggle our work simultaneously! Some of us have had to pivot our entire lives. Some of us have had to support our partners who’ve lost their jobs. That’s no small feat. That is HUGE!
Taking time to sit with the uncomfortable, breathe it in, but then take action to move forward. We’ve got to plan for it. What steps can you take right now?
What to do when you’re feeling stuck
I want to share some encouragement right now. There’s a verse that helps me when I feel stuck, frustrated and overwhelmed:
“Faith without works is dead.”
It’s about taking action. This week I really just want to help you to keep moving. So I talked about procrastination last Thursday in my group, and that can take our motivation away. One of the childcare business owners in my group had been feeling a bit “blah”, a bit frustrated and unmotivated. But when we’re having those moments of feeling like giving up and not wanting to go any further then we need to take every ounce of strength we have left in us and take a small step. Baby steps.
As we do that it will rekindle our energy and our willingness to continue the journey.
Every step you take is moving you forward
No doubt you know by now, that the journey is not always easy, in life or business. We all have those moments in life where we want to curl up in a ball and hide from the world. We don’t feel like doing anything. That’s where I’ve been the last few weeks. I needed to take time out for my personal loss and I didn’t want to get back into doing some areas of my business. This includes showing up for lives and serving my online community.
I kept telling myself that I wasn’t ready. But eventually, I showed up and just came on. Zero plan, no jazz hands or top tips, I just shared from the heart. And as the words flowed, I started to feel better. Somehow I knew deep down that there was a person in the group that needed me. I was here to encourage them, to lead by example. Somehow, subconsciously I knew there was someone who needed to hear what I was sharing.
Afterwards, a few of the Ninjas let me know that they’d missed me and had really needed that pep talk. Even in the ups and down’s of grief and in my pain right now, being able to help someone else was what I needed to help me to keep pushing and moving forward.
Don’t give up – keep moving!
Hopefully you can see from my own story, that you need to keep going. Someone out there needs what you have to offer. Please don’t give up, take the faith you have and take the tiniest teeny step possible. Even if it’s crawling. Keep going forwards towards your goal. Then sit and watch what the universe does with that!
If you can’t fly, then run, if you can’t walk run, then walk, if you can’t walk, then crawl, but by all means keep moving.
– Martin Luther King Jr
And – no matter what I’m going through personally – I’ve got your back. There’s nothing I love more than supporting you, so head on over and join my free Facebook group.
The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step. Lao Tzu.
What’s your next step going to be?
We’re an army of childcare professionals who are sharing ninja-sharp skills to transform our businesses into childcare empires! This is Childcare Ownership all Grownup! Interested in becoming more involved in the community and to grow your business? Join us for more tips on how to make your childcare business the success it deserves to be! Or if you prefer Instagram, we share ideas and tips there too!
During last decade – and beyond – I’ve heard countless money myths being waved around as reasons for hesitation when it comes to taking a step into owning your own childcare business. And while some of the rumors might be a hangover from days gone by, most of them are just factually incorrect and are certainly nothing I’ve ever witnessed.
There’s only so much time to write these blogs and you’ve not got all day to read them, have you?! So in this post, I’m busting three of the myths that keep popping up in Childcare Ninja conversations. Read on if you’d like to find out why you need to ignore the money myths and listen to your heart!
Money Myth 1: Expensive to get going
Not true! There are tonnes of ways you can start your childcare business on a budget. I’ve written a few blogs on this, but it is possible to start a wildly successful childcare business with limited financial backing. I know because I’ve done it! Cut back on expenses – do you need those subscriptions or the organic food? Could you strip it back to the bare minimum temporarily until your profits start coming in?
Look into ways of getting more knowledgeable that don’t involve spending money or spreading the cost between yourself and other childcare facilities. Sign up to mailing lists and free trainings and teachings around legislation and regulations.
Setting up your childcare business doesn’t have to be expensive. You don’t need an all-singing, all-dancing childcare business to get going. I think the phrase is “done is better than perfect”. Don’t let fear of getting started put you off.
Money Myth 2: Childcare owners can’t make a profit
This one always makes me laugh, because my business is testament to the fact that you most certainly can make a profit! Don’t be intimidated by the money talk around childcare. A lot of the chatter is around the issue that our industry is not valued by many in our society, despite us being a lifeline to families. The recent pandemic highlighted how essential we are (which we all knew!). But the debate as to whether we’re profitable is nonsense.
You can have a successful childcare business that brings in a profit. It takes hard work, effort and planning, but it is definitely achievable. I’m working with a number of childcare business owners – my Childcare Ninjas! – helping them scale up and grow their businesses to become even more profitable.
Money Myth 3: Hard to keep up
Funnily enough, this money myth is a teensy bit true. Yes, it’s sometimes hard to keep up with changing policies and legislation. I could probably dedicate an entire year to reading documents and keeping up with current practice. And of course all the regulations are essential so we have to keep on top of it all.
However, when you’re savvy and have a great team around you, you can split the training sessions between you and share the knowledge when you get back. You can sign up to emails that will keep you up to date, and you can join networks with other childcare businesses. There’s also a great Facebook group I’ve heard about, for Childcare Ninjas like you 😉
Tips for battling the money myths
Over the years I’ve been running my own childcare business, I’ve discovered some ways that you can combat the money myths out there! Here are a few tips to help you on your childcare business journey.
Firstly, surround yourself with encouragers and people who support your dreams. It’s so much easier when you’ve got like-minded people giving you motivation and rallying around you. It’s also important that you can trust them and know that they have faith in your abilities. There’s nothing worse than constantly having to second guess yourself because of negative comments about things that you didn’t ask for an opinion on.
Be wise with your money
Second, y’all know I love systematizing, so you won’t be surprised to hear me say this! So here goes: Get yourself some systems that help you manage your business better. This will save you time and money to invest elsewhere in your childcare business. When you’re more organized and things are streamlined, you can budget better.
Next, I’d like to encourage you to invest in yourself. With the savings you make on time and with budgeting better via systems, you should put that towards bettering yourself. Learning never goes out of fashion! And educating yourself and self development is never a waste of money. Whether that’s additional childcare training or a business diploma, the decision to prioritize YOU as a business owner is pivotal to your success!
My last tip is that you get help with finance. I’m not talking about loans and borrowing money (although if you’re going to do that, make sure it’s ethical and in your best interests! Steer clear of sharks). No, I mean getting your head straight when it comes to finance. Take time to get some money mindset coaching, and another idea is to learn how to do your own accounts.
I hope you’ve found this blog super helpful. If you have, share it with a friend!
Also, if you appreciated the tips in this post, there are plenty more over ideas and inspiration over in the Childcare Ninja Facebook group! We’re an army of childcare professionals who are sharing ninja-sharp skills to transform our businesses into childcare empires! This is Childcare Ownership all Grownup! Interested in becoming a part of the community? Join us for more tips on how to make your childcare business the success it deserves to be! And don’t forget to follow us on Instagram!
Being a childcare business owner comes with a lot of responsibility. Not only do you have the precious loved ones of parents at the center of your business, you’ve got a plethora of childcare professionals to care for. So how can you help your team become the childcare rock stars they’re destined to be?
Since I’ve been running my childcare business for over 13 years, you’ll know I have learned A LOT in that time. In all honesty, I’ve made countless mistakes, but I’ve also helped numerous childcare workers achieve their goals! And I try to make sure I learn from every slip up, so that it doesn’t happen again.
One thing I’ve been successful at over the years is building a great team to work with me. I have developed strategies and leadership skills that allow me to support them and help them grow.
Here are a few of the ways you can do this too, to help your team flourish:
Help your team notice their strengths and weaknesses
Get to know your employees in the workplace. Sounds cheesy, but identifying their strengths and weaknesses is the key to unlocking the potential of each member of your team. Spend time with them playing with the daycare children, observe the way they interact with others and how they carry themselves. Are they confident? Do they feel able to ask for help?
Paying attention to your team’s strengths and weaknesses means you can provide them with support in all the right places. You can seek out opportunities for professional development training where needed and do it in a positive way. As a Childcare Ninja, one of your most important jobs is to detect these strengths and weaknesses, then use that knowledge to propel their productivity and get them on board.
Part of this is actually being honest about your own strengths and weaknesses with your team. Learning together can be a massive turning point! Talk about your own journey and let them see it’s okay to recognize where you need to do the work, but it’s also great to celebrate how far you’ve come.
Give your team wings to fly
Being a business owner is a fine balance of wanting to have control, but also letting go. I get it. Your business is your baby. You’ve put in hours and want to make sure everything is managed PERFECTLY. I know. I hear you! But the problem with this comes when you’ve got to take an unforeseen break – say, an emergency with your mom – and you’ve got to let someone else take the reins. Firstly, you’ve got to have systems in place for if this does happen. Secondly, you need to know your team will cope okay without you.
So, while you’ve got the opportunity, allow members of your team the opportunity to grow. Let them take on tasks you might normally reserve for yourself. Give them the chance to be creative in their problem solving before you step in. Help your team help themselves! When you see how brilliant they are in situations, you’ll be able to rest easy when the time comes for an operation (or even – GASP! – a holiday).
Show your team that you care
Working in childcare is hard. Especially when you’re new to it and you’re young and learning constantly. Do you remember? Was there a manager or childcare owner who went the extra mile to support you? I didn’t really experience this, so I do my utmost to be the change I want to see! I want to create a culture of kindness in my daycare centers, for both the children AND the staff.
Before you freak out, I’m not saying we all go on spa breaks together and play team building games in lunch breaks! I’d just say that there’s a real need for us as business owners to set a good example. Let’s be creative with incentives to get the team working together for a common cause. A little friendly competition here and there, like a Bake Off or a poster design. A “Random Acts of Kindness” tree in the staff room is a lovely touch I’ve seen before.
And most of all, take time to show them that you care. I love writing my team cute hand written notes, so they know I’m thinking of them. A little kindness really does go a long long way. And they’ll remember how you treated them, hopefully going on to lead as you’ve done when the time comes.
I hope this has shown you how to lead your team to become the rock stars they’ve always meant to be! Let me know in the comments if you have any other tactics to share. I’m always keen to develop my leadership skills and continue my own Childcare Ninja journey!
Before you go, have you found the Childcare Ninja Facebook group yet? We are an army of childcare professionals who are sharing ninja-sharp skills to transform our businesses into childcare empires! This is Childcare Ownership all Grownup! Interested in becoming a part of the community? Join us for more tips on how to make your childcare business the success it deserves to be! And don’t forget to follow us on Instagram!