Q&A with Beth Smith, co-founder and Editor-in-Chief of HybridMom.com of New York, USA, and winner of the Women Helping Women Award in the 2010 Stevie Awards for Women in Business. (The 2011 awards are now accepting entries – the deadline is August 31. The entry kit is online, here.)
What are your top 3 recommendations for being a successful working mother?
1. Take time on Sunday to organize your week, check your calendar for things that require errands, and do what you can in advance. Nothing is more stressful than buying and wrapping a birthday gift in your car on the way to a party!
2. Know that however organized you are things will not always be perfect. And that’s OK. Be kind to yourself, and make time for friends. Not only is this important for you, but your children are also learning the importance of self-care.
A friend of mine who recently lost her mom told me one of her favorite memories of her was her weekend ritual of reading the paper in bed. She loved seeing her—a working single mom constantly in motion—luxuriate for several hours in her satin sheets with the Sunday paper spread all around her. I love that image, too. Life is meant to be savored and enjoyed.
3. Make sure every member of the family pitches in. It’s sometimes easier to quickly make a bed than to call your child to come and do it, but in the end, if every family member does his or her part, it will make a big difference.
What item of news recently caught your eye and why?
I was deeply saddened by the recent helicopter crash in Afghanistan that took the lives of 30 Americans, including 22 members of the now-fabled SEAL Team Six. Watching several families talk about their lost loved ones, I was struck by how proud and brave they still were despite their grief.
Do you have a favorite business app?
I check Google Analytics several times throughout the day. An article not getting quite the number of hits I suspected? I’ve been known to change a title (which can make all the difference) while waiting on a deli line. Priceless!
If you could choose another profession, what would it be?
I would love to be a pastry chef. When I’m not working I’m usually baking.
What quality or qualities do you most value in your business associates?
Thinking outside the box. Hybrid Mom was founded on a shoestring budget and I love people who can make things happen, no matter what.
What do you think is the worst bad habit to have at work?
Procrastination. It takes more energy to worry about getting something done than actually rolling up your sleeves and doing it.
As someone at the top of your profession, what keeps you inspired or makes you hit the ground running in the morning?
I love that every day I have the chance to help women entrepreneurs. I know what it’s like to ride the roller coaster, and if I can make the journey a bit easier for others, it’s a good day. Platforms such as the HybridMom.com Bazaar, where women can buy and sell products, and the soon-to-be-launched Freelance Circle, in which women can use their professional skills to help other businesses, were created to help women realize their entrepreneurial dreams.
About Beth Smith
After a 15-year career in publishing for a global business media company, Beth Smith decided to take off on a quest to find a happy medium … a way to have the best of both the working and the mom worlds. And she found that with Hybrid Mom. A co-founder of the company, and currently the Editor-in-Chief, Beth has been an instrumental part of creating and growing the Hybrid Mom brand. Today, she’s dedicated to providing a platform that allows other moms to do exactly what she did.
When she’s not busy seeking out moms who’ve found creative ways to blend work, life, and family, Beth can be found (in her yoga pants) reading, traveling, or exploring ways to ignore the barking of her Yorkiepoo. Beth lives on Long Island with her husband of 18 years and her 10-year-old daughter Jenna.
Hybrid Mom is a community connecting moms on the things that matter most—family, lifestyle, and work style. HybridMom.com was a recipient in the 2010 and 2011 Forbes Magazine’s Top 100 Websites For Women awards.
What do you think of Beth's tips for working mothers? What are your favorite working-mom tips?