We never imagined we would become entrepreneurs.
Twelve years ago we had a light bulb moment. We were cruising along in our Bay Street jobs when shifts in both of our personal lives caused us to think about our careers in a new way. We came to realize that we needed to step off the corporate path to invent our own working lives.
When we founded our company, Admiral Road Designs, we did so with a view to balancing work and family life. We were looking to create careers for ourselves, minus the 100-hour work weeks of Bay Street. Although we didn't have a name for it at the time, we were about to become lifestyle entrepreneurs.
During our tenure at Admiral Road, we shipped cozy, personalized blankets to thousands of happy kids around the world. We celebrated many successes and milestones, suffered many disappointments, and generally experienced the highs and lows of anyone who has started a business. At the same time, we've tried to balance the needs of our families with those of our company.
All of these experiences led us to write our book, Mom Inc. – How To Raise Your Family And Your Business Without Losing Your Mind Or Your Shirt (HarperCollins). It's a 'how-to' business book through the lens of motherhood. One of the reasons we wrote Mom Inc. was that we were often approached with questions from other entrepreneurs, or people looking to make the leap to self-employment. After all, when you're charting your own course, you don't necessarily know which direction to take. We have always loved coaching and mentoring other small business owners.
We've now begun a new chapter in our entrepreneurial lives. We recently sold Admiral Road in order to grow our coaching and consulting practice, Spark Consulting. Spark is the perfect culmination of our professional and academic experience. We're MBAs with a track record of growing and running a small business, as well as trained, experienced coaches and consultants.
Our love of working with entrepreneurs is the reason we're so excited to be joining You Inc. as columnists. We spend a lot of time with our clients in that space where life and work intersect. Or, as Arlene says, "When work is life."
In this space we'll talk about the issues you face as a small business owner that might be holding you back, strategies for growth and everything in between. As a business owner on your own path, you constantly face forks in the road. We'll be here to answer your questions and help you on your journey.
About the authors:
Since the publication of Mom Inc., Amy and Danielle have spoken on the topic of mom entrepreneurship to the media, at seminars, conferences, as well as to hundreds of other mom entrepreneurs. Both women received MBAs from the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto. These days, the best friends continue to work together, coaching and consulting to other entrepreneurs. Amy and Danielle have five children, ages 5-10, between them.
If you have questions about your business for Amy and Danielle, please post them in the comments section of FIX MY BIZ, directly below. Thanks!
About the authors:
Amy and Danielle frequently speak on the topic of entrepreneurship to the media, at seminars and conferences. Both women received MBAs from the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto. They founded Admiral Road Designs, which they sold in 2013 after more than 11 years. These days, the best friends continue to work together, coaching and consulting to other entrepreneurs via their business, Spark Consulting. Amy and Danielle live in Toronto and have five children, ages 5-10, between them.