Your name: Kirsty Moore
Your company: Roly Poly Pillow
How many children do you have? Please include their ages (Names are optional): One child. Two and a half.
How did your career change after having children?
I went back to teaching full time but didn’t feel I could do both (teach and parent) well so I decided to leave rather than go part time. So, I decided to go it alone and started tutoring in the evenings which has been hugely successful. However, about a year ago, when my daughter was 18 months, I realised the markets for children’s sheets and pillows was limited. So Roly Poly Pillow was started.
Where did the idea for your business come from?
We couldn’t find any safe way for our daughter to use a pillow in her cot bed. She was 18 months and showed signs of wanting a pillow at night but we didn’t want a loose pillow in her bed in case she suffocated or the loose pillow moved around and woke her up. She I designed a cot-bed sheet with an inbuilt pillow case with no loose fabric.
How do you spread the word about your business?
Social media, local networking groups, local advertising, being part of Sussex business groups, Mums Enterprise.
How has Mum’s Enterprise supported you through the launch of your business?
Lindsey and Lucy have been really personable and helpful. I attended the London exhibition last year and it was the start of my journey. It acted as a catalyst and if I hadn’t attended, I don’t think I would be at this stage. So many questions were answered and I was inspired by the speakers and advice on offer. I also loved that could take my daughter to the event and that Mums Enterprise supports women and their careers. Lucy and Lindsey have both voiced support for the venture via emails and I also hope to share the launch with them and their page on June 1st. I can honestly say that without their support and the information I gathered from that day in London, I may not have moved forward with my idea which has now become a business. It was taken so seriously that I was agreed a government start up loan and was also shortlisted for the Baby Products Association Creation and Innovation Awards 2018 in London.
What do you think Mum’s Enterprise offers to both visitors and exhibitors?
It’s free, so first of all it offers a way for all women to consider flexible working. Being free is amazing. Inspiration. A real way forward. Answers to questions. Support. A realistic presentation (I knew at the London show that I would also need to keep tutoring part time while I started my new business and that it would not happen over night). An unapologetic forum for ambition and independence. More recently, their work on post-natal depression has also been inspiring as it encourages women to talk and also see that the future can change and be better. So many mums lose their identity after having children and Lucy and Lindsey’s plight to get women back to work in whichever flexible way works for them not only helps women, it should also be a wake-up call to our government. With regards to exhibitors, it introduces them to a wide range of hard-working, creative mums who want to become part of/return to the world of work. They get to hear what their customers/clients/employees want and need.
Which events are you attending this year?
I would love to attend London event but I’m showcasing my business at the Ardingly Baby show. I’m currently looking to see if I can make the Friday. I hope so! Ideally, at some point I would love to share my experience as a speaker of starting a small business and how to do as much as you can on your own.
Have you got any exciting news from your company to share?
Yes! We launch on June 1st so am keen to spread the word. It’s been nearly a year of hard work, research, planning, manufacturing…but finally ready to sell.
What one piece of advice would you give a mum looking to break free from the 9-5 lifestyle?
Take the long view. Where do you want to be in a year or two? It’s not easy, but it’s so gratifying and empowering. An amazing message to give our children. Also, I often say to myself: what’s the worst that will happen? No one is going to laugh if I fail, at least I gave it a go. Will I regret taking this leap? No. I will regret the lifetime of wishing I did. Go for it with your eyes wide open. Mums Enterprise keeps dreams in perspective and gives a realistic way to achieve goals.
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