Monday Mumpreneur with Lisa Houghton & Tracey Park from Talking Tots
It's a very special Monday Mumpreneur this week as I introduce you to not one, but two amazing mumpreneurs.
I love their business and I share their passion for building children's confidence and self esteem. I'm sure you're going to love them too.
Your names: Lisa Houghton & Tracey Park
Talking Tots is the UK’s original and favourite provider of fun, interactive classes that gently boost preschool children’s communication and social skills. Our friendly and exciting classes can help all children develop some of life’s most important skills.
How many children do you have?
Lisa: Olivia 11yrs and Beatrice 7yrs
Tracey: Hannah 24 yrs, Jemima 20yrs and Amelia 10yrs
Where do you live?
Lytham St Annes, Lancashire, UK
PC or Mac?
Mac! Mac! Mac!
Tell us about your business:
We had been working together in the NHS as paediatric speech & language therapists for many years and had become friends as well as colleagues. For several years we talked about setting up Talking Tots. We saw first hand that more and more children struggle with basic social and communication skills. This inspired us to create Talking Tots, a three-stage activity programme that uses games and activities tailored specifically to children's natural language development.
Talking Tots helps to develop and improve vital social and communication skills such as listening, taking-turns, vocabulary building and phonological (sound) awareness. These skills help children to become confident communicators,helping with everything from learning to read to making new friends. The first Talking Tots franchise was launched in September 2007 and now the company operates franchises across the UK.
What motivated you to become a mumpreneur?
Things in the NHS had changed and there were many aspects of it that we didn’t like. We are both so passionate about children’s communication & social skills that starting our own business and therefore being able to be at the helm, seemed the most natural progression.
What’s been your biggest challenge in business?
We faced various challenges, working very long hours, including evenings & weekends and juggling this with family life. Also, although we were highly experienced clinicians we had no business background. We were on a massive learning curve (and still are!).
How have you overcome it?
We took advice from business consultants, read voraciously and have learnt ‘on the job’.
What’s been your proudest business moment?
We still get a huge thrill when franchisees & parents ‘get’ what Talking Tots is about. We also still run classes ourselves and we love to see the children blossoming and enjoying themselves.
What’s your catchphrase or favourite quote?
Always remember the power of the pause.
What do you do to relax or nurture yourself?
It’s clichéd but we love spending time with our children … bike rides, picnic or ‘duvet days’.
What was the last treat you bought for yourself?
Lisa: Fake tanning lotion Tracey: Diamond ring
Lisa: green Tracey: jade green
Lisa: Daisies or daffodils Tracey: Freesias
What one piece of advice would you like to give to a new mumpreneurs?
It’s absolutely essential that your family are supportive. It’s great to celebrate the highs but you need their support to get you through the lows!
Fancy featuring as one of our amazing mums? Drop me an email over on the contact page and I’ll be in touch. And remember to drop by every Monday to welcome our latest profiled mum.