Apr 9, 2012

Misconceptions & Myths about Work At Home Moms

Work At Home Moms or WAHMs make up a large portion of mothers in this day and age.  While there are many different reasons a woman would choose to be a WAHM, being home with her children and/or saving on childcare is one of the main reasons.  Childhood goes by so quickly and many women want to be able to enjoy every single minute and milestone of their child's life.  However, there are some large misconceptions and myths about Work At Home Moms, as there may be for other career paths/choices.

1. Work At Home Moms just sell for a living.

While there may be many WAHMs that do sell various products or services for a living (Avon, Mary Kay, Insurance, etc...) there are many women who do not.  The majority of Work at Home Moms have their own businesses and are working on developing their brand and business.  Women are brave & brilliant and most have the motivation, determination and drive to jump in with both feet to kick start their business and build it to success.

For those WAHMs who do sell for a living, there are a good portion of women who make a great living off of that.  If they can build their client/customer base large enough and if they have the skills in social media, SEO and promotion, they can build one small site for their sales business and sometimes make a living in their sleep as well.  For WAHMs who do sell, it's all about building yourself and your customer base enough to be able to make residual income while you're not working.

2. Work At Home Moms can't get a real job.

Untrue!  Women work at home for a variety of reasons, but the fact that they can't get a real job is really a misconception.  There may be women who decided to work from home because of the economy and the difficulty of finding a job in recent days, but these women are smart women who are able to get jobs.  Maybe they just wanted to try a new business venture to see if their ideas could actually take flight or maybe they just wanted to turn a hobby into a business.   Then there are also women who left a great office job/career to become work at home moms.   There are many companies and supervisors/bosses that will allow parents to work from home, if the business and tasks allow.  

3. Work At Home Moms work from their living rooms with laptops

This may sound like a funny one, but it actually is true.  There are many people who stereotype WAHMs as women sitting on their couch hunching over to their coffee tables to work on laptops in PJs with a cup of coffee.  While there may be some WAHMs that do that, the vast majority have offices.  Work at Home Moms know the importance of having a home office and having a place for themselves where they can work and concentrate.  Some may have more elaborate offices than others, but all WAHMs don't work from a messy living room while their kids scream, run and play around them.  

4. Work At Home Moms aren't serious entrepreneurs

There are many women who work from home who have created multi million dollar businesses right from their own home or home office.  Though those results are not typical, it shows that it is able to be done with the right amount of work, experience and determination.  These successful businesses are created by women with their children right in the next room! 

For any woman (or man) to be a successful and serious entrepreneur, it takes a lot of motivation and hard work.  Sure some mom entrepreneurs may fail, but it's not exclusive just to work at home moms.  Any person creating a business may fail and some may succeed.  It all boils down to determination and what that person is willing to risk, sacrifice or put into their growing business.

5. Work At Home Moms are unproductive.

Yes, work at home moms do have their kids around but that doesn't mean they aren't hard workers.  For moms who don't have help around the house during a work day, it may take longer for moms to get their business tasks done, but they still work their hardest.  Depending on the age of their children, work at home moms find time to work and concentrate.  These times may be during naptime, mealtime, playtime or even while their kids are at school, an activity, playdate, etc...  Just because we have children at home doesn't mean we are or have to be unproductive.  We still work to our potential to build our business and our brand.

6. "You're lucky to stay home all day and relax..."

This is something I have heard day in and day out when I was a WAHM.  I can't even count how many time someone told me that I was lucky to stay home and relax or stay home and watch TV.  Work At Home Moms have stress too, whether they're working for a company telecommuting, selling or working on their own business.  Moms that work from home actually have it harder than those who work in an office because they have to work extra hard and have that extra motivation to focus them directly on what they have to get done.  It's very tempting, when you're working from home, to take a break or watch some TV or play with your kids, that's why it takes more motivation than being in an office all day.  Work at home moms work hard!

7. Working from Home is suitable for every mom.

Working from home takes determination, drive, motivation and willingness to not give into your temptations to be lazy.  Trust me, those temptations are there, you have to train yourself not to give in and to stay focused on the task at hand.  If you slack off and give into taking long breaks, you won't be successful or could lose your job.  There are many different factors a woman should consider before making the difficult choice to work from home and women should definitely think long and hard before making that decision.  My tip: Do your research.

What are some misconceptions you have heard about being a work-at-home mom?