As children, we dreamt of what we wanted to be when we grow up. With time, life often gets in the way. Not for the side hustler. Not for the entrepreneur. They continue to dream. To listen to the inner voice of their younger self. They don’t see parenthood or full time jobs as barriers to success, but rather fuel to stoke their entrepreneurial fires.
Just ask Kathryn Tyler, co-founder of Digital Mums. Digital Mums upskills women with in-demand social media and digital skills so they can find rewarding and flexible careers. What’s now a fully fledged successful business, started from humble beginnings. There’s always graft behind the craft.
Kathryn Tyler grew up in a Welsh mining village. Flashing back to childhood, she recalls how unemployment was the “norm”. Yet the industrial backdrop did little to temper her entrepreneurial spirit.
Quite the opposite, in fact. Kathryn’s early-life experiences fuelled her passion for helping people transform their lives.
Mining real business experience
Many years later, Kathryn’s mining memories became illuminated by the flashes and beeps of the technological age. The digital economy had arrived. It was booming. The internet was becoming increasingly accessible.
It was then that Kathryn launched her first business Hackney Social, a social media agency. “I learnt so much during this time,” says Kathryn. “It provided the experience I needed to launch my side hustle, now turned full business, Digital Mums.”
The online training course service empowered mums to kickstart their new careers in digital. It was the embodiment of Kathryn’s entrepreneurial spirit. One which was ignited years earlier in the small mining town.
“These early-life experiences made me passionate about giving people work and life opportunities because I have seen first-hand how soul destroying being out of work is”.
Working 9-5… and beyond
Kathryn conceived the Digital Mums concept whilst working a full-time job. In time, she decided upon informing her employer about the side hustle.
“I was given great support by my then employer to pursue my passion,” says Kathryn, underscoring how “transparency was a major benefit”.
As the business grew and expanded, she incrementally dropped her working hours down to 3 days a week. This guaranteed financial stability, ensuring the side hustle was viable before taking it full time.
It was only when they received a low-interest, low-risk business loan from the Big Issue investment arm, that Kathryn with the support of her employer, became self-employed and started to chase the full hustle dream.
The rest, as they say, was history.
Your business is your baby
Being a parent is the most important job of all. It takes time. Attention. Energy, skill and love. Put it this way: parenting is the blueprint for running a successful business. You nurture your business. Grow it. And, when your business is ready, you push it out into the world.
You think of your passion as your baby. Something you love and something you created.
That’s why Digital Mums rocks. The company helps women return to the workplace, hustle for the roles - and pay - they deserve and make positive changes in their current careers.
This is particularly important given a huge portion of the side hustlers in the UK - those who hold a main job as an employee and a second as self-employed - are parents.
The report, ‘Side Hustle: A Way of Life, Not Work’, which features Digital Mums, casts a light on surprising details about the side hustling population in the UK, including that 44% of side hustlers are parents with at least one child under 19 living at home.