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4 Major Things to Budget For When Starting a New Business

Written by Grace Nasralla

There are some priorities that a small business startup cannot overlook if they are seeking a successful venture. One major requirement is investment. It is very impulsive to think that one can start a business without having the willingness to invest money and time. And yes, the investment has to be a combination of these two components. Here are some tips to help female entrepreneurs in the startup stage of their business:

1. Time Investment is crucial.

A business start-up will need at least 85% to 95% of time investment during its initial start-up stages, and the remaining time left should be invested in sleep; in order to be able to focus on the required work the next day. It will be difficult to maintain the capitalizing of much time for the business at first, but staying focused on business goals and the ultimate business vision will sustain a small business start up until its foundations are solid enough for some reduced time investing.

During these initial stages of starting a business, prioritizing is very important. What should be addressed first? What could be of highest priority to a new start-up?

a. Researching trends, planning, strategizing, learning about competitors, identifying vision, mission, objectives and goals.

b. Exploring ways to create awareness and increase visibility for the business. Best way to invest time when creating visibility is by attending networking and community events. The small business owner gets to share information about the business, and meet good leads that may bring in referrals who in turn may become customers one day.

Continue reading 4 Major Things to Budget For When Starting a New Business

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#MOMPconf Twitter Party

MompConf Twitter Party Feb 22, 2018 for Mompreneurs Conference

We’re SO close to kicking off The 2018 National Mompreneurs® Conference! What better way to celebrate than to host a Twitter Party so we can connect with you and our incredible roster of sponsors, speakers, partners, and attendees!

With $1,500+ in prizes to give away, we know this is the party you WON’T want to miss!

Be sure to follow our sponsors and partners PLUS RSVP below for your chance to win!


@NationalBank  @TruShieldIns  @GoDaddyCanada   @UPS_smallbizCA 

@SageNAmerica  @EvolocityFG  @GlobalPayInc  @ParentsCanada



3 x All Access Passes to The 2018 National Mompreneurs® Conference (valued at $285 each)

4 x $75 SAJE Wellness Gift Cards thanks to National Bank

2 x $50 Visa Gift Cards thanks to GoDaddy Canada

4 x Annual Subscriptions to Mompreneur Magazine (valued at $39.95 each)

5 x $10 Tim Horton’s Gift Cards, UPS Vouchers, and a UPS duffel bag, thanks to UPS Canada

2 x copies of “The Confidence Code – The Science and Art of Self-Assurance” thanks to Evolocity Financial Group

… with more prizes to be announced!


Please RSVP Below…

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Julie Steward – Mitteez

Julie Steward is an Elite+ member based out of Vancouver Island, BC. She is the founder and owner of Mitteez International Inc., and we are thrilled to be sharing her Success Story!

mompreneur Julie Steward of Mitteez

What inspired you to become an entrepreneur?
I believe I was born an entrepreneur. Throughout life, I have always had the busy brain of how I could invent, create or embrace an idea. In 1999, I become a professional entrepreneur when I invented and established, the world’s first online high-end lingerie boutique. I sold that company as I was still in the middle of my life with mothering young babies, and that was my priority. I am also an Artist, and when I had time free, I would embrace myself in painting. I became quite successful and sold my paintings to several hotels in Vancouver where today they still are being displayed. In 2011, I became a professional entrepreneur again, when I had the idea for a developmental teething mitten. My children I would say is what inspired me this time. I have been pursuing that vision since and would certainly give thanks to MITTEEZ because it has blossomed me to be a full-time entrepreneur.

What’s the best part about owning your own business?
That I can work it around my family. I have four very busy children and my youngest is 6. I also like the freedom and not having restrictions to pursue my dreams further.

Can you describe a typical day?
Every day something is new but there is never a dull moment which I am grateful for. I love to be busy and knowing that every minute I am either learning something new or taking steps to develop further. Because I deal with China, and it is just me at this time, my days are about 12-14 hours long. Continue reading Julie Steward – Mitteez

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Announcing Our Finalists!

Drumroll Please!

The 6th Annual Mompreneur® Awards Finalists have been selected. Winners will be announced at the Annual National Mompreneurs® Conference March 2-3, 2018 in Toronto.

TORONTOJan. 12, 2018PRLog — Mompreneurs® and ParentsCanada Magazine have teamed up once again to recognize and reward the country’s top Mompreneurs. This year the 23 businesses and 23 women named as finalists, representing 6 provinces, will be vying for one of four prestigious awards, with the top prize valued at over $30,000 in cash and business services designed to drive the winners’ companies forward to further success.

The 2018 Annual Mompreneur® Awards recognizes the hard work and talent of busy female entrepreneurs who are making advances in today’s Canadian entrepreneurial business environment, setting new standards for women in business, inspiring new lifestyle norms and taking charge of their economic livelihoods and career options. More women than ever are armed with the education, determination, empowerment and talent to create their own business, charting the path for greater employment opportunities and economic stability for all Canadians.

Voting began on December 4th and closed December 10th, 2017. Over 1,200 women were nominated or registered online at, and 205 entrants advanced. After accumulating points based on support from over 90,000 public voters and 30,000 supporters, as well as impression ratings from a selection committee, the finalists were narrowed down.

Finalists will be scrutinized by an expert panel of respected judges, based on criteria such as innovation, commitment to community, sales growth, leadership, and scalability, in 4 award categories: Mompreneur Award of Excellence (exemplary product/service), Mompreneur Startup Award (for a business under 3 years), Mompreneur Award of Merit (for a consultant or franchisee), and the Mompreneurs “Momentum” Award (for a female-led non-profit, charity, or service-based business).

2018 Mompreneur Award Finalists

And without further ado, the finalists in each awards category are:

Mompreneur® Award of Excellence
Tiber River Naturals Inc. – Adriana De Luca & Michelle Lalonde, Winnipeg, Manitoba
Bamboletta Dolls, Ltd — Christina Platt, Vancouver, British Columbia
Rok Cork — Elizabeth Roque, Toronto, Ontario
Adorable Chocolat Inc — Ginette Ahier, Shediac, New Brunswick
Rawnata —Natalie Dueck, New Bothwell, Manitoba
Three Farmers Products — Natasha Vandenhurk, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
Keenfit – The Pole Walking Co. — Sheri Simpson, Kelowna, British Columbia
Neveen Dominic Cosmetics — Neveen Dominic, Calgary, Alberta

Mompreneurs® “Momentum” Award
Belbeck’s Family Farm featuring Rent The Chicken — Kate Belbeck, Moffatt, Ontario
Hawthorne Cafe — Kerry Bunney, Milton, Ontario
Zoom into Life Photography — Puja Misra, Mississauga, Ontario
For the Love of Laundry – Melissa Power, London, Ontario
The Yoga Project – Vanessa Miniaci & Jessica Monkcom, Orangeville, Ontario

Mompreneur® Startup Award
Love Powered Co. — Anna Lozano & Lindy Sood, Oakville, Ontario
Round Trip Studios — Alison Wawrzyniak, Milton, Ontario
Smash + Tess — Ashley Freeborn, Vancouver, British Columbia
Wallis Evera — Monique Parker, Delta, British Columbia
Nanashake — Tamara Aldip, Toronto, Ontario

Mompreneur® Award of Merit
Young Living Independent Distributor Kah-Mei Smith, Port Coquitlam, BC
Crazy But It Works — Barb Houser, Norwich, Ontario
Independent Director with Pampered Chef — Kathy Drennan, Kincardine, Ontario
Happy Healthy Momma with JuicePlus+ — Jennifer Zurbrigg, Edmonton, Alberta
Mary Kay — Lygia Valcourt, Oshawa, Ontario

To view descriptions and further information for all Finalists, please click here

The winners will be announced in Toronto at the 6th Annual National Mompreneurs Conference taking place on March 2nd and 3rd, 2018 at the Toronto Congress Centre.  Joining them to celebrate will be an elite powerhouse roster of business and leadership speakers including Kirstine Stewart, Simon T. Bailey, Amber Mac, Kimra Luna, Erica Ehm and many more.

For information on the 2018 Mompreneur® Awards and prizing, please visit

More information about the Annual Conference can be found at:

To interview Maria Locker or any of these emerging Canadian business leaders and mentors, including sharing their stories, getting business/entrepreneur success tips and learnings, or showcasing their business ideas, please contact:

Rania Walker, PR & Media Relations   |   Front Door PR   |   416-258-8953   |   [email protected]

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ParentsCanada magazine (  is one of Canada’s leading resources for parents of newborns to tweens. Our focus is on providing parents the tools they need to make positive choices for their families. @ParentsCanada

Mompreneur Showcase Group Inc. ( is the trusted national network that supports, educates, and empowers female entrepreneurs across Canada. With a team expanding across Canada, they boast a collective of over 17,000 members and subscribers, and an online community over 80,000 strong. @TheMompreneurTM

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Green Means Go, Let the Cash Flow

By Danette Harkness
Senior Manager, Small Business Banking, Coast Capital Savings

cash flow tips

What doesn’t kill you may make you stronger, but a negative cash flow will definitely kill your business. Cash flow is your business’ lifeblood, and understanding its behaviours can dictate whether you’ll make it or break it – so take control of your finances! Here are some tips to set you up for cash flow management success.

Give your dashboard some attention

Think of financial projections as a performance dashboard. It organizes and presents data in a way that offers clarity about where your business is headed, and the different terrains you may encounter. Financial projections can help you:

  • Anticipate peaks and valleys so you can react appropriately. Make projections about expected cash inflows and outflows. Create a projected income statement and balance sheet. Understanding your cash flow’s behaviour ahead of time will allow you to make contingency plans to help get you through the ups and downs of the cash flow cycle.
  • Establish a long-term plan so you can work effectively towards goals that may seem a long way down the road. Visualize the flashing yellow lights or potential roadblocks in your business roadmap, so you can find the most direct (and unobstructed) route to achieving your goals.

Reap what you’re owed

No one likes a bottleneck, unless you’re pouring wine through it. Eliminate any barriers that prevent you from generating the cash you need to address everyday business needs. For instance, you can improve your business’ cash flow cycle by collecting accounts receivable as quickly as possible.

The sooner you invoice your customer, the sooner you can expect to be paid. Encourage your customers to stay on top of their payments through incentives. Reward faster payers with discounts. For example, offer your customer a 1% discount for paying within 10 days. Otherwise, the bill is due in full in 30 days.

For the laggards, put your foot down and let them know you mean business. Charge late fees, or insist on partial or full payment upfront. And like any bad partner, don’t shy away from dumping customers that are weighing you and your business down.  Continue reading Green Means Go, Let the Cash Flow

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Simple Steps to Creating Big Goals

Written by Tessa Kampen

What’s the single biggest thing you can imagine that will grow your business or change your life?

It’s a straightforward question, but not an easy one.

Your answer to this question will take you closer to your BIG Goal, by which I mean something more than just small improvements or modest growth. Because let’s be honest, it isn’t very bold to just do marginally better than the year before. So when you are answering this question, take a moment and think to yourself, “Am I thinking big enough?”.

Your BIG goal is not something that you will achieve in a week or a month. It may take a year or years even to get there. If that is the case, then you ARE thinking BIG! For example; if your sales growth last year was 3.5% and you are aiming for 4% this year, that is an incremental goal and you have a good chance of achieving that goal. But what if your goal was 15% instead? That is a bold move and maybe you’ll get there, maybe you won’t but making the attempt will mean opening your mind to different possibilities and thinking outside the box. Even if you end up with a 7% increase — that is way better than the 4% you were originally aiming for!

Here is a great tool to use when trying to achieve that BIG goal…  Continue reading Simple Steps to Creating Big Goals

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Tips for Working Through the Holidays

Written by Sara Clarke

woman working from home with kids during holidays

There are plenty of mompreneurs and women entrepreneurs who work from home. With Christmas vacation coming up, this often means working from home – with children home in the process! Wondering how you can still get quality work done? Here are some tips to help you successfully work your business while the kids are ruling the homestead:

  1. Get Up Early: Now that you don’t have to get the kids to school by a certain time, you have freedom in the morning. Instead of getting kids ready for school and packing lunches, start your work day early and let the kids sleep in (if that’s even an option!). This way you get a couple of quiet work hours in and the kids are well rested when they awake. A bonus to this is if you work an eight hour day and start at 6am, you will be done for 3pm – add an extra hour for interruptions, such as making lunch, etc.

Continue reading Tips for Working Through the Holidays

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Finding the Best Payment Solution for Your Business

Written By Marilyn Wilson, Senior Manager, Small Business Banking, Coast Capital Savings

Payment Solutions - tips from Coast Capital Savings

When it comes to payment, convenience is king. From tap and Apple Pay, to Amazon’s pilot of a cashier-less grocery story, it seems like new, alternative payments are growing faster than the pumpkin spice craze. It’s crucial that your business can keep up, not just to have the latest shiny technology, but because your customers will expect it.

Here are five payment solutions to keep your small business on top:

Give the people what they want – more options!

We’re living in a dizzying world of choice, but when it comes to accommodating your customers’ desires for flexibility and convenience, more options is key. Choose a payment solutions provider that accepts a wide range of payment methods – from credit and debit cards, to gift cards and loyalty programs, to currency conversion for foreign customers. If your customer can’t easily pay for the product or service you’re providing, they’ll head to your competition.

Rest assured, you’re secured

Just like you lock your front door, put a lock on cardholder data. Safeguard your customers from fraud. If you lose your clients’ confidential information, you stand to lose a lot more than just your loyal customers.

Choose a provider that has an integrated solution for customer data and payment information, and make sure they comply with the global information security standard – the Payment Card Industry Data Security (PCI DSS). It’ll put the tricksters out of business (and keep them out of your business), lower your risk of liability, and enhance your reputation as a safe place to do business.

Don’t like surprises? Know the rates and fees

There’s no getting around it – payment providers will charge a fee for every transaction your business fulfills. Some will charge you a flat rate, regardless of transaction size. Others will charge a percentage amount of each transaction. And if you’re using point of sale (POS) terminals, or offering certain payment services to your customers, like recurring billing, you might have to budget a bit more. As the old adage goes, you need to spend money to make money. Assessing if the payoff outweighs the payout will help determine what fee structure and services will best suit your business. Continue reading Finding the Best Payment Solution for Your Business