Juggling parenting and being their own boss, meet Stephanie from Little Observationist
Hello! I’m Steph. I’m a freelance social media strategist and content creator. I also have an Etsy shop where I sell photography prints. Home is in southwest London where I live near the river with my husband Jorge, 2-year-old daughter Emilia and our lazy cat Oakley. Some of my favourite things apart from spending time with family and friends are a perfect cup of tea with the teeniest dash of sugar, a hot bath with a great book, wandering around London with my camera and travel to somewhere I’ve never been before.
Tell us about your business baby
I’ve been a social media strategist since 2012, working full time in an office setting, which helped me to build an amazing foundation to take the leap into freelancing in 2018. The organisation I worked for those six years before I went solo are still a client, and I still enjoy the work we do together.
My clients now are mostly small businesses across a range of industries and there are many ways we work together. I create highly customised social media strategies, offer social media audits, set up new social media profiles, hold one-to-one training sessions, do some photography projects, write, edit and curate content, provide analytics, and many other things that small businesses don’t have the time or – in such a quickly changing digital landscape – sometimes also the knowledge of best practices, to do themselves.
The work that resonates with me the most has been with individual artists and small visual arts companies, study abroad and travel businesses and a charity I’ve now joined that advocates for inclusion for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. I’d also love to start doing more work with small businesses run by parents that focus on children.
As a side project, I also have an Etsy shop under the same name where I sell photography prints. (http://www.littleobservationist.etsy.com)
What’s your why?
I come from a family of entrepreneurs who value hard work and support small businesses. Helping creative and innovative people reach goals and succeed is the reason I became a freelancer. I want to help those who deserve to stand out from the crowd share their stories and make themselves more easily found by the audiences they want to connect with the most.
What do you find the hardest bit about doing the juggle?
Being able to strike a balance between work and family life is definitely the most difficult part, as I’m sure it is for most parents who own a business. As much as I try to be in the moment with whatever I’m doing at any given time, since I’m a freelancer, I’m always on mentally – brainstorming ideas for clients, thinking about my next Instagram post, considering analytics and more. I switch from work mode to mum mode in .5 seconds when my husband brings our 2-year-old home after nursery. There’s no commute or time for a break in between to ease the transition. It’s also difficult, after she’s gone to bed, not to go back to finishing what I was doing, but sometimes evening work is inevitable.
Who’s in your support network?
My husband has been very supportive of my work, understanding when I have to put some hours in in the evenings or bring my laptop on holidays. I have several friends who also freelance and we occasionally work together at a cafe or kitchen table. I’m also part of several very supportive Facebook groups full of creative entrepreneurs and freelancers both locally and around the world.
If only you knew then what you know now…
Sometimes you have to take a leap into the unknown to achieve things you never thought possible because they were out of your comfort zone. Life has a way of working things out when you take a calculated risk.
What’s your favourite inspiration quote?