Entrepreneur Interview: Navigating a professional and personal relationship with Mum — The Future Farm
29 enero 2021
How has growing up with an entrepreneur mum shaped you?
As long as I can remember, my mom has always run her own business in the fashion industry. She had me when she was quite young, at 20 years old, and always worked hard to provide for me. At first, seeing her work so hard and being so stressed, I thought I would never want to run my own business. Once I got to 8 years old, she started taking me on her business trips, which were super beneficial to my professional development. Fast forward 10-12 years later and I’m now pursuing an MSc in Entrepreneurship at UCL in London, trying to become an entrepreneur myself.
What challenges and nuances (high and lows) of building business with your mum have you faced?
The biggest challenge is knowing when to talk about the professional side of things vs the personal side. She is also my best friend, and we talk about absolutely everything. Sometimes we might have a personal conversation and at one point one of us interrupts it because we forgot to talk about a pressing business-related issue. We have tried in the past to make a clear distinction between being at home and being at the office. However, once I left for university and then few years later with the pandemic it was difficult to maintain the discrepancy.
How has your professional relationship with your mum impacted your own identity as an entrepreneur?
I think we are a sum of all the experiences we’ve had in the past, and, thus our professional relationship has impacted my own identity. Firstly, it helped me grow up faster and take responsibility much earlier than other peers at the time. Secondly, as she is an extremely creative and “all-over-the-place” kind of person – in a good way, do not get me wrong 🙂 – I had to complement her by being quite organized and grounded. Last but not least, I have learned a lot from our business both in terms of antilogs and analogs that I could implement in my future business.
How has working with your mum impacted your personal relationship? And the relationships with the wider family?
Interestingly enough, it brought us much closer. As we traveled for work, we got to spend a lot of time together just the two of us and our work. We would travel to Milan and Florence twice a year to order the following year’s collection. The pressure was huge and that’s what made us become a much better team. The shopping sessions on the few days off might have helped as well 🙂
Have you used any specific tools and resources to understand the emotional challenges related to building business with family and help you cope with them?
To be very honest, we always kept a balance ourselves. Even though we’ve been working together for a while now, our go-to therapy is shopping, going to the spa or watching a movie or tv show together. But other than sorting it out together, we have not needed to use any external tools or resources yet.
Any other key tips on your journey you’d like to share?
Entrepreneurs face a lot of stress and all the people around them need to be supportive. Sometimes they are not in a great mood, but their friends and family should still be there no matter what 🙂