Interview with Allie Irish – Founder and Owner of Ramblings of a WAHM

Interview with Allie IrishTell us a little bit about yourself and your entrepreneurial journey.

My story is not unlike so many other stories of moms wanting to find their way in the workforce or as entrepreneurs. For years I was a stay at home mom (SAHM) and I rather enjoyed it. As my kids grew and attended school for longer hours I yearned to get out and work. I tried many types of work but was limited because I lived in a  small town and would need to commute to the city for better opportunities.

Honestly, this scared me. For one, I refuse to commute. My husband commutes and I see the toll the long hours of freeway driving can take on a person.

Secondly, I wanted to be home when my children were home. This is important to me, my husband and my kids. Thirdly, I grew fond of making my own schedule and having my days to myself. I guess I was spoiled in a way.

So how does a mom that stayed at home find work that fits her lifestyle and needs? I chose to venture online, start a blog about my journey, and see where that takes me.

Three years later, I am still talking about being a Work from Home Mom (WAHM) on my blog and everyday I find more and more moms, like me, that need assistance finding their dreams come alive by working from home.

What did you do before launching your own business?

Just prior to working online with my blog and business I was a stay at home mom. I had some experience in bookkeeping, accounting, real estate and volunteering. I have helped my husband run his business in the areas of marketing, sales and human resources. I also hold a bachelor’s degree in Anthropology. My original plan was to become a Park Ranger. I decided to be a domestic engineer instead.

How did you fund your business?

Heading into the online world of blogging is pretty cheap. And it helped that I had no clue what I was doing for a good year and half. So, since I was pretty much “winging it”, any funds for site hosting and registration came from my personal funds.

I have grown and now I earn from affiliate sales, fund marketing campaigns and product development.

How many hours do you work a week and how much is spent is your home office?

I am an entrepreneur of many colors. As stated above, I do help my husband and his business. I also work part time for a friend of mine, mostly to get out of the house. The life of a blogger can be lonely.

I work when my family is gone to work and school and I am not called upon for my other jobs. I work most mornings Monday through Friday, about 20-25 hours a week. All of that is spent in my home office, unless I feel the need to get out to work in a cafe.

How would you rate your success?

At this point I cannot rate my success in terms of revenue, I have little revenue to show. And even if I did have a large revenue, I would still rate my success in terms of how have I reached and helped fellow work from home moms start, grow and succeed as entrepreneurs and moms. Working from home has special challenges that I address all the time. I want WAHMs to know they are not alone in their journey.

Every mom I reach and help is a success to me. So, I guess I would rate it rather well.

What has been your biggest business struggle as an entrepreneur?

The risk, for sure. Risk of starting something that may fail. Risk of not making a profit. Risk of simply failing.
Risk is certainly a hurdle any entrepreneur needs to embrace and that is not easy.

I could have easily grabbed a local job with benefits and been earning a steady paycheck for years now. But I wanted to be more. I actually wanted to be the boss and come up with a great product that helps moms become entrepreneurs.

What advice would you give to a new entrepreneur?

Find healthy ways to handle stress. Pick up a great hobby that helps you take your mind off of work for a while.

And be sure to have a support system. From a spouse to a mastermind group, support is always healthy and needed.

How do you manage all of your personal and business activities?

I was just thinking about this the other day because my blog and business are starting to really grow and I have had to put in a few extra hours here and there – hours that potentially cut into my family time. I have had to regroup and change my schedule again to accommodate the life I want for me and my family.

My family comes first. Period. I chose to work from home to be available for them when they need me, no matter what. With this frame of mind, I am able to evaluate the balancing act that comes along with being a mom and home entrepreneur. It’s all about balance.

Frankly, there are weeks I feel I did not manage everything correctly. I simply have a huge bowl of ice cream Friday night, spend some quality family time over the weekend, and regroup again on Monday. That is all I can do sometimes.

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