Balancing work life and personal life can sometimes be hard to accomplish. Sometimes, entrepreneurs make the mistake of either working too much, which can lead to a break down, or taking too much time off work, which can lead to reduced productivity.
In doing business however, neither work life nor personal life should suffer because both are important and striking a balance leads to all round productivity.
This week, we spoke with two fashion entrpreneurs, Mr. Damilola Durodola and Mrs. Mojirola Olatunbosun, on how to balance work life and personal life. These are their experiences;
Mr. Damilola Durodola, who is a graduate of Systems Engineering from the Univeristy of Lagos and a Masters degree holder of Ingormation Technology, is the Founder and Creative Director at Dobblebees.
Dobblebees is a fashion brand which focuses on making bespoke footwear, their driving force is “quality, design and durability”. The name ‘Dobblebees’, which literally means double B’s, was coined from Damilola’s nickname and his wife’s name.
To him, pressure is inevitable regardless of the space you find yourself in. In terms of managing pressure that comes from entrepreneurship when faced with “numerous tasks to be performed simultaneously”, Damilola says,
I try to appropriate more time to tasks that are intellectually challenging like drawing designs, marketing plans, scheduling merchandising, catalogue management etc and delegate activities that involve more physical input (cutting, fabrication, sewing, joining, and sometimes material selection) to other members of staff.
This helps him increase productivity and minimise the pressures that come his way.
As regards fatigue that comes from working hard as an entrepreneur, Damilola is no stranger. His schedule is such that he’s up at an early hour of the morning doing market runs, he then has to do the “compulsory athletics” of transporting his materials to the van before going off to the office to attend to clients, leaving little time for him to catch his breath and even eat at times.
Damilola, who is an extrovert, finds that his work life and personal life go hand in hand, moving in sync. His business makes it possible for him to interact with people and meet new clients but still affords him the opportunity to close at a certain set time so he can have that “me time” for himself, his wife, family and freinds.
You can strike a very good balance between work life and personal life by following a rule of thumb, every time you feel the nudge that something is not right, back track and go fix whatever is wrong.
Even though the lockdown has put a halt to sales in his business, it has provided him an opportunity to “cook up new designs, explore better marketing strategies and spend more time with his family”. After the lockdown he expects to hit the ground running.
To round off, Damilola said, “You can be very lucky, “luck” here means Opportunity meeting Preparation.
Try as much as possible to be prepared for whatever opportunity comes your way. This will take you a long way in business.
Mrs. Olatunbosun Mojirola, a success driven individual with a high skill of knowledge striving to attain goals, is the Creative Director at House of Rólar.
House of Rólar is a growing brand which started in 2018 and strives to be a “world known brand for quality at an affordable price”. They specialise in handmade bags, belts, key holders, ankara jotters purses and wallets.
For her, pressure comes in different forms; satisfying customers who are hard to please and meeting up with demand for products. She handles these pressures by requesting a longer delivery date from customers and scheduling her work appropriately.
When there is a lot of work to do, be transparent with your client about what their products entails, this helps build their trust and confidence in you, then sit down and make plans on how to meet up with delivery deadlines to avoid disappointing them.
Mojirola is not a stranger to stress and fatigue caused by working too hard. She has once broken down while juggling a 9 to 5 job and putting in work to finish an order of 200 souvenirs for a wedding party.
On balancing work life and personal life, she said,
I work with the flow. I try my possible best to ensure that none affects the other by doing what is meant to be done at the right time.
For her, doing what is meant to be done at the right time means planning well by putting a time frame to different tasks like; when to finish an order, when to make deliveries, when to make phone calls and so on.
The lockdown for her has meant a complete stop in production as she cannot go to the market to buy the items she needs but it has also given her “the opportunity to take a break from work loads, relax and review the goals of the business before work resumes.”
In closing, Mojirola said,
In order to have a balance, avoid taking on more work than you can handle and always plan ahead.
She continued by saying, “If you need a day off take it, it’ll help your brain relax and positively impact all aspects of your life. Don’t compare yourself with others but have a mentor you look up to and someone who you can compare business growth with.”
“Transparency is important, it’ll help you with referrals,” she said, “Never discard criticism but accept it with joy because it helps expose areas you need to work on.”
One thing is for sure, planning, preparation and transparency are key factors in balancing work and personal life.