With multiple responsibilities that include running a business and managing a family, mothers who are entrepreneurs—also known as mompreneurs—really have to maximize their time both on and off the job.
In fact, according to research from 99designs, moms who own businesses make sacrifices so they can manage both roles well. Nearly two-thirds report that, after starting their companies, they've been exercising less and spending less time with friends.
Many mompreneurs have learned how to up their productivity game with hacks that include smartphone and desktop apps designed to help them save time or work smarter. Here are some of their favorite productivity apps for work and home.
Mompreneurs who focus on what they do best—and outsource the rest—say they get more done that way.
Jessica Steele, who helps marketers optimize their Amazon product listings, tackles her personal to-do list with local helpers she finds via TaskRabbit, virtual assistants from Fancy Hands, and Shipt grocery delivery.
"We have fresh veggies and fruit delivered twice a week with Shipt, which saves at least three hours a week for grocery trips," she says. This approach also helps her avoid impulse purchases.
Time Management Apps
Digital strategist Jessica Lauren Vine uses Toggl to track her time, so she can determine if it's more cost-effective to hire someone with a lower hourly rate for certain tasks. 'That frees me up to focus on my higher-income tasks," Vine says.
Colleen Ganjian, a college admissions coach, avoids email and phone tag when scheduling meetings by using appointment app Acuity Scheduling, while digital marketing agency owner Beth Riegger swears by the Tomato Timer Chrome extension for The Pomodoro Technique® time management strategy.
Riegger also makes sure she's on top of her busy work and family schedules by linking her business and family Google calendars. "If it's not on the calendar, it doesn't exist!" she says.
Business and Project Management Apps
"Using Asana for project management has been a life-changer at work, but I also love it for managing my home life," says Ganjian. "The reminders and task lists are essential when it comes to remembering that someone has to wear a special outfit to school, that there's a test on a certain day, or to assign a grocery list to my husband." Using 17hats, she is able to manage contracts, invoices, and client onboarding questionnaires.
Riegger uses Dubsado to create workflows. It allows her to go from first inquiry all the way through the proposal to the contract and invoicing. "It works seamlessly," she says.
"As the head of fan experience, I can see exactly who is responding to what, how quickly, and chime in on responses on a specific message using the internal messaging capability," Chazanow says.
Social Media Management Apps
On the other hand, Marissa Sanders, owner of the Simple Money Mom personal finance site, uses the Anti-Social app to avoid spending too much time on social media. The app forces her to enter a password on her phone to access sites such as Facebook and Instagram during designated time periods.
Noting that just seeing the password barrier tells her that "it's not time for social media," she adds, "If you're still tempted, try letting your husband or children set the password and don't let them give it to you until it's time."
To reclaim some of the time you used to spend with friends or for hobbies, give one or more of these apps a try. You may be surprised by the difference having even an extra 20 minutes in the day can mean to your productivity and work-life balance.