Five Key Entrepreneurial Tips From Our Mamas Making It Brunch in NYC

Photos: Julia Elizabeth Photography

Balancing a successful career with motherhood is no easy feat. Sacrifices are made, sleep is lost, and stress is built, all the while trying to build a safeguard around your little one to ensure that regardless of your to-do list, they're happy and healthy. The life of an entrepreneurial mother is, in a word, chaotic, and there's always an individual method to our madness that involves strange twists and turns that no one rule book could predict. We created our #MamasMakingIt panels (and our summit!) to highlight the magic behind that madness — the tips, tricks, and tales of mamas who somehow, someway, make it happen. 

Our latest #MamasMakingIt panel took place in NYC and starred four mamas who likely hear "How do you do it?" multiple times a day: Maiden Home founder Nidhi Kapur, Birchbox co-founder Katia Beauchamp, Mitera founder Yoko Shimada, and Fridababy CEO Chelsea Hirschhorn. These dynamic women provided our equally-inspiring Fashion Mamas NY members with such a raw and real conversation about how they built and/or sustain their businesses, and the type of discipline it takes to get there. Here, we've rounded up five key takeaways from the talk. 

1. Have a true passion for your brand's category. Maiden Home co-founder Nidhi shared that she's always loved the furniture category, so she was a fan first. Then she realized that there was a gap in the market for modern luxury furniture at an affordable price, and Maiden Home was born. Don't just fill a void; make sure you have a natural interest in what you're creating, because you're going to spend many years thinking and talking about it!

2. Follow your instinct, regardless of the naysayers. When Birchbox co-founder Katia shared her initial idea for a beauty samples subscription service to her friends and family, many of them quickly told her that they didn't think it would work. "They told me that no one wants to buy beauty samples," she revealed. Despite the less-than-desirable concept feedback, Katia and her co-founder went on to build the brand anyway, and the launch was an overwhelming success. 

3. Create something that you personally need in your life. If you need it and can't find it, chances are that someone out there will need it, too. Before launching Mitera, Yoko dedicated her life to global health and worked at both the World Bank and the Clinton Foundation trying to improve the health equity gap in the most challenging and underserved environments. As a new mother, she quickly realized that she had to dress professionally but also practically to pump and breastfeed in the same outfit. So, she designed a chic clothing brand with hidden zippers and pockets that was both office-appropriate and mama-accessible. 

4. Build free time into your calendar. Fridababy CEO Chelsea has a genius yet simple strategy for ensuring that she gets some freedom during the day. "On my work calendar I block one hour each day where I don't take meetings or calls," she says. With that time she can brainstorm new ideas, run home to see her little ones, or squeeze in a task or activity that would otherwise be neglected if she had a back-to-back meeting schedule. That one hour keeps her happy and less overwhelmed.

5. Boost productivity with organizational tools and apps. Nearly all of these panelists swear by Evernote to organize tasks, document ideas, and share thoughts. Other favorites include Asana for project management, Trello for editorial management, and good ol' Gmail for family calendar sharing.

Thank you to Mitera for sponsoring this special experience, Maiden Home for hosting us at your beautiful showroom, Sun In Bloom for the gorgeous vegan brunch, and Fridababy and Promise Organic for the essential gifts!