Library Offers Mompreneurs Tools for Success
As a working mother I, like many, face the challenge of balancing work and motherhood. And, like many, the balancing act forever keeps me on my toes looking for easy solutions at home and creative scheduling to spend more time with my child.
For many women, the challenge of balancing work and family has provided the inspiration to launch their own businesses. These business-savvy moms might have the brilliant ideas, but they will need information and assistance to put their plan into action. The Tulsa City-County Library offers a wealth of information, assistance and support for entrepreneurs to get their ideas off the ground, much of which can be accessed from home.
Of course, there is no shortage of books to assist mompreneurs. The Entrepreneurial Mom: managing for success in your home and your business by Mary E. Davis offers a base level introduction for mothers who want to start a business but lack the knowledge or the managerial skills.
Mary Quigley and Loretta Kaufman’s book Going Back to Work: A survival guide for comeback moms provides anecdotal and real-life advice for stay-at-home moms who want to re-enter the workplace or start their own business.
Aside from general advice and inspiration, the library offers nearly everything the mompreneur needs to get her business off the ground. The Central Library’s Research Center provides a specialized business collection for entrepreneurs and small business owners.
Included in this collection is The Business Plans Handbook, a series that offers sample business plans from diaper delivery to publishing. Also available is Entrepreneur’s Ultimate Start-up Directory by James Stephenson, which provides information on 1,350 entrepreneurial opportunities with information on start-up costs, income potential, legal issues and more. These are among many materials providing an outline for what entrepreneurs need in a business plan.
Once the skeleton of the business plan is drawn, the Research Center can once again step in to fill the holes with the data that will sell the momtrepreneur’s idea to loan officers, investors or customers. To find competitors, the Library offers ReferenceUSA.
Available from home, this database helps to locate local competitors and provides yearly sales averages, contact information and industry news. ReferenceUSA also offers residential addresses that can be culled to create mailing lists.
The Research Center is also available to assist with finding market and demographic information. From target markets to spending potentials, Tulsa City-County Library’s Research Center has books and databases to determine the average cost of a particular good or service and the potential profit for the mompreneur’s business in her market area. The business-savvy mother may want thematic maps to illustrate the market need; the Research Center offers these as well.
Now that the mompreneur has her data-rich, illustrative business plan, she might want someone to look it over, offer advice on how to proceed, or help connect her to potential financing opportunities. The Tulsa Organizations and Services (TOS) database (tulsalibrary.org/tos) provides contact information for services and organizations that provide assistance and support to entrepreneurs and small business owners.
The library also offers programs to assist entrepreneurs. SCORE, Counselors to America’s Small Business (www.score.org), offers monthly business plan workshops. And each spring, the Tulsa Library Trust sponsors a series of small business programs designed to connect entrepreneurs and small business owners to area opportunities, information, and assistance. The Library’s events can be found in the online event guide (tulsalibrary.org/events).
The world of opportunities for entrepreneurs, women, and more specifically, mompreneurs is seemingly limitless. As mothers redefine their roles to include family businesswoman, remember that the Tulsa City-County Library is here, providing a wealth of information and assistance for all stages of the business planning process.
To learn more about all that the Library has to offer, visit a local branch location go online to tulsalibrary.org or phone 596-7977.