As if it’s nearly halfway through 2021 already?! And this month is a great time to celebrate your team and yourself! We had International Workers Day on May 1st, Mother’s Day is coming up, and it’s soon to be Teacher Appreciation week. All of which are relevant to you and your staff. So why not celebrate the progress you’ve made so far this year!
At this point in the year, I like to take some time to reflect on how far I’ve come, and to assess where I’m at in relation to the goals I initially set in Q1. I know how easy it is to get swept up doing the day job, so much so that the wins can slip by unnoticed. Or the dreams we had at the start of the year are forgotten.
It’s time to take stock and celebrate the steps we’ve taken!
May the Joy be with you
Every year, May seems to be a month of celebration. Singing the praises of teachers and moms and workers! Yay! But I wanted to shout out all the brilliant things you’re doing too! As childcare business owners we step into our families’ parenting shoes and we do quite a lot of teaching as well.
You are amazing community leaders, supporting parents to do their jobs in difficult times, and nurturing their babies! You’ve helped keep your country’s economy going. We are superheroes! Where’s your cape!? Let’s celebrate the last few months together!
Where did you begin 2021?
We all had high hopes for 2021 after 2020 and the Covid-19 drama…we thought we’d have moved on by now. But the reality hasn’t been as great as we’d hoped maybe. In January I remember me and my teams all sat down and went through plans for the next few months. Not just the day-to-day learning and care stuff, but I wanted to encourage them to be a part of my vision.
It’s easy to get caught up with the business of life and the Childcare Business but make sure to take stock of all those amazing plans we made at the start of the year. So what did you set as your goal earlier this year? Revisit your vision board and your goals list. Are there any bigger goals that got left behind? Because there’s still enough time to do them, choose to go all in!
Did you have a foolproof strategy in place to ensure that you took action? I’d love for you to reflect on the goals you set yourself. Where are you at in your journey towards them? Have you been meeting your SMART targets?
Where are you at now?
We’re almost halfway through 2021! Can you believe it? It’s like I blinked and FebMarchApril happened! Anyway, time is flying! So as we approach the midpoint, now’s a good time to reflect and check in and assess where you are.
Check your progress in detail. Imagine your goal as a destination; Whereabouts are you on the road to it? Reflect on some things like what’s working? Where have I gone wrong? What changes do I need to make? We need to look at all these things and push forward and put in place the things that need to be done so we can accomplish our dreams for 2021.
Make a note of the steps you’ve got left to take. Perhaps as we’re almost 6 months in it’s time to buckle down and zoom in on the bigger goals. Let’s take those dreams – the ones we are passionate about – and shout out: “Yassssssssssssss!! I’m going to finish it this year, I’m going to smash it!” Now we’ve got to get laser focused, give it 110% and throw everything we’ve got at these goals and go for it!
What can you celebrate?
So please use this month as a time to give yourself a pat on the back for making it through such a weird year, for being a shining light in the darkness! Clink a glass or two to celebrate how far you’ve come since January. Even if the wins seem small, it doesn’t matter!
I also want to celebrate and thank all the Childcare Business owners with it being Teachers Appreciation Week and Mother’s Day coming up!
As day care and childcare providers we definitely teach like teachers and care for kids just like moms do! SO this is my big thank you for EVERYTHING you do for your families and for the community you serve.
One of the ways I say thank you is via my freebies! So please head over and download resources that you’ll find useful. I think you’ll love my Weekly Planner – so you can stay on track to achieving your goals!
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!
When you’re so busy running a childcare business, it can be really easy to get caught up in the day-to-day shenanigans. You’re ticking off the to list. Suddenly you come face to face with an unprecedented challenge! But you can’t see the wood for the trees. Uh oh! It’s time to get some perspective.
I wanted to write this blog to remind you that from time to time it’s a good idea to take a step back and zoom out from the obstacles in your way. If you’re keen to grow your childcare business, you need to get really good at looking at your business from a 360 perspective! Read on for tips I’ve used to up-level my business.
What does perspective even mean?
I get it, it’s one of those words thrown around in the online space and by entrepreneurs! But it’s used a lot for a reason! And sometimes these words lose their meaning, don’t they?
Put simply, it’s the way that we look at something. Some people will be looking at it from one stand point, and others from a completely different angle. And it can be hard sometimes to understand how others are perceiving things. But it’s definitely important to stand back and reassess now and again.
And, for the word nerds among you, it’s also an art technique that changes the distance or depth of an object on paper. Like when you see a photograph or painting of a road and it’s wider up close, and narrower further away. Not as relevant in this particular situation, but kinda interesting none-the-less!
How perspective can help your business
A lot of the time we can get so wrapped up in the day-to-day stuff, that we cannot think clearly. We don’t give ourselves the headspace to process things and we forget to take a deep breath, step back and recalibrate. When we get so zeroed in on one particular challenge that it’s all we see or think about! And it can then be a struggle to focus so that we can figure out the solution!
Getting stuck in our heads is so common, and what this leads to is our minds getting in a complete tangled mess that we miss what is truly important. And this lack of holistic vision can mean that we’re oblivious to even simple the most solutions that are staring us right in the face.
By focusing too much on teeny details you lose perspective!
So how can you do better?
As I’ve already mentioned, lots of us are unable to understand situations that arise in our childcare businesses clearly because we’re too involved. To improve the situation we’ve got to learn to be reflective. To reposition ourselves in order to see things from another frame of reference. Sometimes, all it takes is a pause and a reframe, and you can magically see how to overcome a tricky problem.
Take time out from being head down in the business, head to your quiet space, light a candle and do some journaling. Often when we let ourselves stop and brain dump, we can find answers pop into our head! I’ve written about how you can create the perfect thinking space and give yourself time to reflect here.
You can ask for help in the form of a survey to get a little perspective. Find out how your staff perceive things, but don’t be afraid to ask your families too! Depending on the situation, the more help the better!
It’s okay to look for further support
One way to break out of the zoned in habits you’ve developed is to get some help. It’s super important to make sure you recognize that you need a little support and find ways to get it. This will give you the confidence and strength to be able to step out of that challenge and see it from a birds-eye view.
Having someone else to talk things through with, or just a fresh pair of eyes, can really help you relook at the problem you’re facing. They can suggest solutions because they’re looking at it from a whole new perspective. And they can give you a leg up to their view, or explain how to get there. It’s really key that you have a support network to lean on when things are difficult. Getting their interpretation of things can change your business for the better!
A little help from my friends…
You’ll often find that you’ll get an “AHA!” moment from your chat, whether it’s your significant other, a family member that’s been supporting you in your business. You might find that you get incredible advice off a business bestie, or a little perspective from the industry specific Facebook group you’re a member of, or the business coach you’re working with. This week, I talked about why we all need some support in the Facebook group for my weekly #tiptuesday and in my free group last week.
What other support have you gotten that’s really helped you?
There are lots of ways to get the support that you need in your Childcare business depending on what goals you’re trying to reach or what you’re working on. If you haven’t yet joined, do check out my free Facebook group! I’d love to see you in there!
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!
Running a childcare business is hard. It can be super fun, and of course you’re passionate and adore the families you work with. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t elements that are challenging and that you won’t face difficulties from time to time. And doing that alone is tough. So I wanted to share my top reasons for ensuring you get support in your childcare business.
I can’t stress enough how important it’s been for me to have support while I’ve been growing my daycare centers. It’s all part of my Ninja mindset and I know I wouldn’t be where I am today without it.
1. Asking for help is not a sign of weakness!!
Support can help move you towards the success you’re looking for but I know how hard it can be to even ask for that help in the first place. In the back of your mind, you’re thinking “I shouldn’t need help. It’s MY childcare business. Why can’t I do this by myself? I bet no one else has to ask for support. Urgh I’m such a failure.” So firstly, let me start by saying: WRONG! You SHOULD need help. I don’t know one single person running a successful business — childcare or not! — who’s done that all by themselves!
Needing support is certainly not a sign of weakness or signalling to the world that you’ve not a clue what you’re doing, it’s actually a sign of intelligence. Taking a moment to realize which areas you need a little help in or perhaps developing a better understanding, is not weak. If you ask me, I believe it shows your strength as a leader and as a role model.
I know that feeling well though, and it all stems from worrying what others might think of you. However, when you break that down, who are these people you’re worried about? Are they brave enough to follow their passions and set up a childcare and take a leap into running their own business? Nope. The people who criticize or judge others are often the people wishing they had the guts to do what you’re doing. So don’t let the fear of what people will think (or what you think people will think) hold you back from getting the support you need to grow your childcare business.
2. Get support sooner rather than later
Acknowledging the areas you need support in early in the game will help you move towards your goals much faster, because you’ve then removed those fears. Think strategically about what you want help with, and get a feel for the kind of support you want in that arena. Do you want to grow a network of other childcare leaders? Or perhaps you need support with tech and systems? Maybe you could do with some more confidence, and a coach could support you in that? The sooner you start investigating what it is you need and how you’ll get it, the better.
When you’re willing to go and seek out the support you need, you’ll get the success that you want at a quicker pace! I wish that I’d been less cautious of getting the help I needed. I think I’d have grown my business faster. Hindsight is a wonderful thing, isn’t it!? But actually – even though the way I’ve done things might not have got me there as fast – it was right for me at the time. I try not to be too hard on myself.
But take it from me, things begin to go smoother and at a more rapid pace when you’ve got the support around you! Don’t wait till you feel ready. Do it now!
3. Don’t go it alone!
Finally, it’s not just about learning, it’s about having people to lean on when things get tricky. Whenever I’ve come up against a challenge, it’s been a huge relief to be able to call upon my network and say, “hey, I was wondering if any of you felt like this too?” And knowing you’re not alone is not to be underestimated! That emotional support is vital for keeping you at the top of your game. Sometimes our life partners aren’t enough for the pep talks. What we need is people who’ve been there, done that and bought the t-shirt, OR empathetic cheerleaders who just get it! They get exactly what you’re going through.
Having a support network helped my business flourish. And it made me realise that there were also toxic “friendships” that I needed to be rid of too. Surround yourself with people who’ll support you to achieve your dreams, not ones who question your every move, trying to keep you small. Dream big, baby girl. You’re a childcare ninja, after all!!
Furthermore, it’s not just a sisterhood of other marvellous women you need on your side, I’d highly recommend investing in support too. Getting a mentor or coach and having a place to go and ask questions is key to growing your childcare business. After working with a coach myself, my whole mindset changed. I was able to see the bigger picture, and really work on my goals and my vision. Since I made that choice, I have sky-rocketed my business! Imagine what you could achieve!
“A mentor is someone who allows you to see the hope inside yourself.” Oprah Winfrey
Have you got a support network? Why don’t you share this with them and show them how much you appreciate them!?
If you don’t have one yet, come and say hi in our Ninja community on Facebook! 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!
If 2020 has taught us anything at all, then surely it’s that we need to be prepared for the unexpected and be as adaptable as we can be. So how can you use this knowledge to organize your finances to make you more secure?
So what I’m sharing with you today is things we can do to cover ourselves. Making sure we cover all the bases and essentials, plus investing in our childcare businesses and us. Because investing in ourselves is key to growth.
Does the word “finances” fill you with dread?
Since I’ve been running my own business, I’ve got a lot more comfortable talking about money. The ins and outs, the profit margins and invoices. I’ve written about it before over here, and in other places too!
It’s strange, because although we know how important money is, and how finances impact our lives daily, it seems that we don’t like to talk about it much. There’s definitely a touch of taboo when it comes to discussing the green stuff.
Recently, I posted about finances in my Facebook group and it turns out that not many Childcare Ninjas are feeling the topic! But what I want to change is how we view money. Because it is super clear that to become successful in your childcare business, you’ve got to get comfy with finances and the talk that comes with it.
Excuse-proofing your finances
Last year, it was very easy for many of us to make excuses around not investing in our childcare businesses, and putting off investing on ourselves. But now 2021 has arrived, and we should be able to start off on a good foot, covering ourselves so we have the finances we need to grow our businesses. This includes money for investing in ourselves and investing in our childcare businesses.
Now is not the time for excuses! So what can you do to change the way things have been going? Have you made a plan for alternative income streams? Have you got ideas for saving money?
Challenge yourself to up your finance game
Developing your childcare business this year means you’ve got to stop using the old excuse “I can’t afford it”. Take the opportunities that you’re given in 2021 to grow your business. Lean into the fear and get stuck in. Stop putting off investing. Take money as an excuse of the table. And to do that, you’ve got to set yourself up to be more secure. You need to get comfy looking at your finances. To know exactly what you need to have coming in, and some extra for investment.
I want to challenge you to sit down and create some plans on different ways you can make some extra income next year. Set a timer and write down all the possible ways you could make money. E-bay? Babysitting? Make a cup of coffee and really go for it with that list!
Think outside of the box!
What are you good at that could bring you in some side hustle money? Could you teach piano lessons or do dog walking? Could you offer odd job skills to neighbors? Perhaps you’re a dab-hand at baking and might offer your services to busy moms who haven’t got time to make that all-singing all-dancing birthday cake?
Don’t let worries about what other people might think get in the way of you trying ideas out. Marie Forleo waited tables and taught dance classes while she worked her way up to the top of her game! She talks about money myths many of us women fall into here. And doing something other than running your childcare business, so that you can have enough money to invest doesn’t make you a failure. Trust me!
Still stuck on how to excuse-proof your finances?
I have a great resource that can help you out. It offers a number of different ideas to help you get the cash you need to start your in home business, hire that coach, or purchase that course to help move you along on your journey to success.
I designed this for you because I want you to get the tools you need to get to the next level of your success quickly and I don’t want you to keep putting your success on hold because of limited funds. And I want to help you reach your success as quickly and as simply as possible because it’s about time that you started living life on your own terms! Are you with me!? Download you free ideas list here.
How do you feel about finances? Is it something you shy away from talking about? Or are you at ease in that kind of conversation?
Come and let us know 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!
We all have moments in our lives when things get frustrating. When things just aren’t happening fast enough and the good times seem a mile off. Is struggle something that builds character?
Sometimes it’s difficult to see the wood for the trees, isn’t it? And given all that’s happened in this bizarre year, I thought now would be a good time to think about why it’s important that while we grow our businesses, we also build our strength. So what can we do to develop our resilience and change our mindset?
This blog post is going to help you see how growing your childcare business builds character and tricky times are a blessing in disguise.
Patience builds character
Right now I’m in the process of trying to open a new daycare center and boy oh boy! It is taking FOREVER! Everything that could’ve been a little awkward has turned out to be a nightmare; and even all the things that should’ve been a walk in the park have given me headaches on the regular.
However, I am constantly having to remind myself that it’s all a learning curve. That it doesn’t matter how long I’ve been doing this for, I need to seek opportunities to grow and build on what I know. Every time I hit a stone in the road, I have to remind myself that it’s building my patience. I remember that I’m growing my resilience. And each moment adds to the evidence I have for how I thrive to succeed – even when times get tough.
So I am constantly repeating to myself “try and enjoy the journey”. And I wanted to write this to encourage you, too!
Take stock of your resilience
2020 has been quite the year, hasn’t it? Many of us have lost family members, good friends and people in our communities. The situation has brought with it not only health worries but financial uncertainty. So whatever situation you find yourself, I am sending you love from PA. But I’m also sending you a sprinkle of encouragement and a fistful of hope.
Because, while we might not know what’s waiting for us in 2021, and we’re under a veil of un-sureness as to what’s ahead…I don’t want you to feel like there’s nothing to look forward to. I want you to take stock of all the things you’ve achieved this year, despite there being a global pandemic. How safe you’ve made the children in your care feel, and how well you and your team have coped in spite of everything else going on.
Celebrate the positives (yes, even the tiniest ones!)
We’ve just celebrated Thanksgiving here in the US (which totally signals the end of the year is close), so let’s come out and finish 2020 on a high. Let’s look over the last year and list all the positives. What are you thankful for? What has helped you learn and grow as a business owner and how has that helped you build character? Dig deep and really celebrate the positives – notice the silver linings in the mundane everyday things you’ve been doing.
As a childcare business owner, you get to work with amazing families every day, and you’re often one of their most valued experts. You’ve enabled parents to keep sane during this madness, by looking after their babies for a day or two so they can get things done. No matter how stressful it might have been, you and your team have provided a harbor from the storm for those kids you care for.
I know that my situation allowed me to help a family have the happiest day of their lives during the crisis! What positives can you write down? Scribble all the positives into a notebook, or onto post-its, and celebrate with your family and your team. Create a gratitude tree or a thankfulness tree in your home, office, or daycare center. Ask others to contribute!
Flip the switch
It’s all about mindset. If you continually look for the bad things that have happened and get bogged down in all the negativity, you’re not going to feel good about moving forward. Whereas if you look for the progress markers from this year, seek out the good things that happened and celebrate them, then you’re going into 2021 with a good attitude. You’re showing the universe that you’re ready for anything!
I am sure you’ve seen your business surviving, and possibly thriving (seeing as we are recognized as essential now!), and that’s great. But it’s not just your business that’s growing. Situations like a global pandemic really emphasize how it builds character too.
There are so many hidden blessings, you’ve just got to look for them.
I hope this blog post has brought a smile to your face. These times are tough for many of us, but don’t let that stop you from going out there and bringing your game-face! You’re a Childcare Ninja, after all.
Also, if you liked this, I wonder whether you’ve found the Childcare Ninja Facebook group yet? 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!