Our mothers, the true entrepreneurs!
Growing up, I never took a deeper perspective to life, than I do today. Now, when I look back, I see the same things in a different light. Without confusing you much, I will tell you the lesson I learnt through my latest observation.
Firstly, let us walk through memory lane, a good 20 ~ 30 years ago, to a middle class family. The husband goes out to work, and provides for the family. At the end of the month, he gives certain portion of his salary to the wife. No words are spoken, but the wife knows she has to run the household in the money she has in her hands. She has to pay the maids, the milkman, the grocer, the school fees of the children, the tuition teacher, and the swimming or dance class for the kids. She even has to manage some other sundry expenses such as haircuts, buying stationery for the children’s school project or school picnics, and some unforeseen expenses like relatives visit, a mixer repair or a sudden gift she has to buy. And believe it or not, though it sounds near impossible, she still manages to save (sometimes) for a rainy day.
However, there are times when at the month end she might have to borrow from her neighbour or a dear friend (in absolute secrecy, even the husband must not know) because her daughter absolutely refuses to wear her last year’s birthday dress and insists on buying a new one, or her niece is getting married and she must gift her gold, in order for the societal appearance ('PR').
Her responsibilities do not end here. Her vision to see her family grow and succeed makes her motivate her husband to work harder and build enough resources for buying a house, save for higher education and wedding expenses of kids, and make a nest egg for post-retirement days. Just imagine, a mother runs the household with a frugal hand so that she can make the ends meet, looks after the welfare of the family, fulfills expectations of her children and still successfully saves. Wow, that says a lot for her ‘entrepreneurial’ skills!
Now, my menfolk, do not hang me please, I am not trying to say that we do not work or have the mentioned skillset, I am only trying to say that a mother has probably more roles and responsibilities to juggle, which she does efficiently and how we can take a leaf or two from her experiences.
Now, coming to learnings, we, 'entrepreneurial founders' more or less assume the similar responsibilities day in and day out and manage to run the whole show single-handedly. An entrepreneur who has received funding from Friends & Family or angel investors for his startup, needs to manage in limited resources. He rents an office, hires skilled people, pays their salaries, purchases office supplies, incurs marketing and promotional costs and many more. But, all of these he must manage in the seed fund or the initial investment that he has raised. Furthermore, an entrepreneur needs to make his business grow strategically. For the same, he shows the investor the bigger picture, the growth of the family, the required strategic investments in synergistic companies or solutions, like mother does for education/house, so that the investor can invest in the ‘bigger’ and ‘better’ things for the business to go places.
I believe, Mothers and Founder's are made from the same mold; they strive and they manage without complaining. Seriously, a mother is the best entrepreneur in the world. She manages without attending world-renowned management schools and possesses all the entrepreneurial skills without actually being one.
Let us learn to be frugal in our spending but grandeur in our thinking, delivering and executing.
Thank you mom!
By Murali Bukkapatnam
Founder & CEO:getdomestichelp.com ¦ TiE Life Charter Member ¦ Founding Member: Hyderabad Angels ¦ Board Member
This piece was originally published here.