Guest Post from Sarah L. Cook

What’s a New Mom With a Business to Do?

Fifteen years ago I wondered the same thing. Some days I considered closing my business so that I would have time to take care of my new baby. Other days I thought I should hire a nanny to take care of the baby while I grew my business.

 It wasn’t until I began outsourcing and working with a virtual assistant that knew I could have the life I wanted – time to happily raise my child as well as time to grow a successful business. Over time, I have become know in many circles as the go-to-source for outsourcing and delegation systems for entrepreneurs and especially parent entrepreneurs.

Over the years, I had two more children and as my children got older, I began to do something I call “kidsourcing”.  Kidsourcing is where you assign business tasks or jobs to your kids and pay them to do the work. This delegation system provides a great way to teach your kids valuable business and life skills. Once they start earning money, the children can start paying for things that you would have normally paid for such as school lunch, ballet, soccer, etc. This process teaches them financial literacy as they learn to budget and make choices about how to spend, save, and share their money.  Kidsourcing also gives you some excellent tax deductions for your business at the end of the year since you get to deduct the children’s wages from your business income.  All of my children have worked in my office since they were very little, but I didn’t officially put them on “payroll” and give them a W2 position in my business until they were each about seven years old. Kidsourcing really creates a win-win! You get to teach your child great things while saving money on taxes and while freeing you of having to do some of the necessary tasks in your business.

 As my children’s skills grew, they began working for other business owners. This started their journey of entrepreneurship and led to the founding Raising CEO Kids and writing the book, The Parents’ Guide to Raising CEO Kids.

 Here is how you can begin outsourcing or even kidsourcing in your own business:

1.     Define what needs to be done in your business.

2.     Break your business up into tasks to be done: daily, weekly, monthly, and quarterly.

3.     Decide what tasks can be done by others and what must be done by you.

4.     Create systems of instructions and guidelines that can be easily followed.

5.     Determine what skills are needed to complete each task so you know who to hire.

6.     Hire the appropriate team (kids, virtual assistants, in-person assistants, schedulers, book keepers, etc.).

7.     Implement systems to support and empower your team instead of micromanaging them.

8.     Inspect what you expect.

9.     Let go of team members that are not a good fit.

10.  Continue to get the help you need to grow your business.

 For a list of 99 tasks my kids have done in my business that have helped them learn to be entrepreneurs as well as tips and best practices for raising entrepreneur kids, pick up a copy of The Parents’ Guide to Raising CEO Kids.

Sarah has interviewed over 160 young entrepreneurs and most of their parents, uncovering the pillars and pitfalls of being a successful teen CEO. She works with parents who are often entrepreneurs to create success in business and in life both personally and in their families. In her book, Sarah discusses ways that teens as well as parents can turn their talents and motivation into money.

Sarah Cook, Founder of Raising CEO Kids, is a sought after speaker, business coach, systems strategist, and co-author of “The Parent’s Guide to Raising CEO Kids” (Aug 2011). She was the host of the CEO Kids Success Summit (2009) and the Cash Savvy Kids Summit (2010). Sarah has been featured on TV, and in blogs and on radio around the world as well as in Yahoo Finance and Reuters.

When not working to grow businesses, Sarah can be found spending time with her husband and three entrepreneur kids, working out, reading, connecting with people on social media, finding the best deals on and off line or indulging in extra dark chocolate with chili peppers!

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