Dawn Mucci is an Elite+ Mompreneur member based out of Innisfil, Ontario. She is the founder & CEO of LiceSquad.com. For her Success Story, Dawn shares about the inspiration behind her business, the frustrations and rewards of starting a business from scratch and what sacrifices are required when you’re the head of a household and the leader of a successful company.
What inspired you to become an entrepreneur? I cannot recall what inspired me towards entrepreneurship. I possessed those traits as a very young child and as I grew up they became stronger. My favorite childhood game and pastime was setting up my play cash register with fake money and creating things to sell to my friends and family. At around the age of five or six I began selling lemonade and other items for real money from a stand on a busy Toronto street. I think I was hardwired towards entrepreneurship as it did not run in my family but I do believe that one can be inspired and develop the entrepreneurial mindset at any age. Continue reading Dawn Mucci – Lice Squad Canada
We’re so excited! We are thrilled to announce that we’ve forged an official partnership between Mompreneur® Showcase Group Inc. (Mompreneurs®) and FS Local! Working together, our goal is to help Canadian working women gain the tools to establish themselves in their local communities and online. If there are moms at home considering a new business venture, we want to inspire them to make the leap. If there are new business owners struggling with the stress of getting an idea off the ground, we’re here to say ‘you can do it. Just look at all these amazing women who have taken the plunge.’
Here on the Mompreneurs® blog, and as well on the FS Local blog, we want to share the success stories – to inspire women to go after their dreams and celebrate those who have. So every week, we’re going to showcase a different Mompreneur. We’re so excited to get going, and we couldn’t think of a better way to reboot our collective series than to tell the full story of Mompreneurs® founder and CEO herself, Maria Locker.Maria’s story is very much like that of a prototypical entrepreneur: after leaving a teaching career to be with her kids, Maria realized being in business for herself was the best fit. But when she had difficulty finding a network of like-minded working women, Maria decided to organize her own networking group and trade show. Maria was asked about what it takes to start something from scratch and the realities of being the head of a growing business and family.
What inspired you to become an entrepreneur? Growing up in a family business taught me every aspect of the entrepreneurial lifestyle possible. I was a cashier at the age of 5; a manager at the age of 13; and to this day I help in the family business as much as I can. Being an entrepreneur is definitely in my blood, but it was having my children and leaving my teaching career that re-opened the possibilities of becoming an entrepreneur on my own terms.
Can you describe a typical day? Is there such a thing? Now that both of my kids are in school full-time, a typical day can include in-person meetings over coffee or lunch, replying to emails, canvassing event locations, attending conferences, scheduled phone calls, and just about anything in between! I tend to work from 9am to 3pm, and then from 7pm to at least 10pm (in all honesty, it is a rare night for me to close the laptop before midnight!).
Who do you count on for help? Do you have a network of family and friends that answer the call?
I am truly lucky that I am able to call on so many incredible people for help. First and foremost, my husband – on weekends when I am often running out to conferences or showcases, he is flexible and accommodating and I know the kids are going to have a busy and active day with Dad! Family and friends are all within close proximity and are often accommodating: my mom is always eager to help out in the mornings when I have to hop on the GO Train for an early morning meeting in the city; being a part of the ‘school moms’ crew helps immensely when I’m stuck getting back in time from those very meetings in order to pick up the kids – we all help each other out because we are all in the same boat! And of course I have THE most incredible team of licensees with Mompreneurs® – each of them is amazing in their own right, and offers their own talents and support depending on what is needed!
Have you ever had to sacrifice something at work to make the family work? Or vice versa? There are always sacrifices no matter what I do – but I think the things I sacrifice now as an Entrepreneur are far more worth it than if I was to be working for someone else. As an entrepreneur I don’t have the benefit of a steady income or paycheck – our family has sacrificed a family vacation (for 8 years!), and a new car to name a few things. But what I can say is that sacrificing those 2 things has meant that I can be available for my family when they need me, I can set my own parameters, and I can manage expectations based on what we have agreed on as a family – that to me is far more important than a car or a vacation at the end of the day.
What do you do on a day off? Do you even know what a day off is? There really isn’t such a thing as a ‘Day Off’ in my opinion – when you’re an entrepreneur, you are constantly thinking about work as it is interwoven in your every day life – it isn’t a switch you can just turn on or off!
What’s the best part about owning your own business? Being able to decide scheduling and priorities that suit my individual family’s needs is by far the best part of owning my own business. That’s not to say that everything is always timed perfectly! However being able to make it work outside of the normal “9 to 5″ realm is key. I love that I can opt to go on a field trip with my kids without ‘checking with my boss’ – I just aim to make sure everything is organized the day before so that I can put my “out of office” reply on without being stressed about it!
What does the future look like for you and the company? Mompreneurs® has the potential to grow Canada-wide, as well as through the U.S and internationally… we have been approached by women looking to be a part of our organization in all areas of the world: Ghana, Australia, France, Italy, Abu Dhabi – it’s incredible! The goal is to first master our network and offerings in Canada as our home base, and then to look to expansion thereafter.
Who’s another Mompreneur that inspires you? My mom is a huge inspiration to me – she’s taught me everything I know, and from a very young age… she’s been the ultimate inspiration behind all of my entrepreneurial efforts, and my mom has shown me what true value can come from doing something that you love, no matter how hard the daily struggle can be. On top of everything, she continues to teach me and now my own children as well – you’re never too young to work in a family business!
Are you active in your community? What does supporting local mean to you? Very much so – I have lived in my small town all my life, and I have a deep passion for keeping connected with the amazing people and events within it. My family has owned and operated a small business in town for over 30 years, and I know how much dedication and passion it takes to keep it going, especially up against big box competitors. Supporting local means everything to me: it keeps our community alive, keeps community members connected to one another, and makes you feel like you’re a part of the hustle and bustle around you. I shop local whenever I possibly can!
Any tips for moms thinking of starting a business?
Don’t over- think it: go with your gut, what’s the worst that could happen?!
Watch this space for more feature interviews with Canada’s Mompreneurs®! For more information on joining FS Local, visit www.fslocal.com
Mompreneur® Showcase Group Inc. is Canada’s fastest growing media company and networking group for women in business. Founder and CEO Maria Locker and licensed chapter owners are dedicated to supporting, educating, and empowering Canada’s moms in business. With an online community of over 14,000 women, the media company offers a unique combination of resources, tools, and informative articles for business women, as well as online and in-person networking and promotional opportunities for all members. The company and its members have been featured nationally through the media, including appearances on Global Saskatoon, CHCH Morning Live, The Marilyn Denis Show, and Rogers Daytime, as well as being published in Maclean’s, Canadian Business, The Toronto Star, The Globe and Mail, Parents Canada, EcoParent, and Profit, and being regular contributors to The Huffington Post and Arlene Dickinson’s entrepreneurial forum “You Inc”.