Better together..

I have images of the show, Madmen in my mind. Women in their gorgeous outfits, glamorous hair and makeup, styled to perfection as pretty accessories in a man’s business world. I loved the show but am glad for our generation and the ones to follow, that this is no longer the case. Women now play a vital role in the workforce but the boys club still exists and we need to be smart, collaborate and create our own support groups to be better together.

The gender equality debate still has a way to go in Australia but we can look to the Scandinavian countries as great examples of what we can strive to achieve at a political and government level. Using this as inspiration, I suggest we focus on the ‘women supporting women’ movement.

“New research in the Harvard Business Review finds that while both men and women benefit from having a network of well-connected peers across different groups, women who also have an inner circle of close female contacts are more likely to land executive positions with greater authority and higher pay, while there was no link found for the success of men in terms of the gender composition of their inner circles.” Power of the Pack, Shelley Zalis Mar 6, 2019, 

If you have read the book, Lean in by Sheryl Sandberg, you’ll understand the power of supporting your sisters. Become part of a like minded community of women such as Business Chicks, Women in Focus or the cheekily named LMBDW (Like Minded Bitches Drinking Wine), or simply help out someone within your office. You know first hand that the support, strength and learnings of other women can take you further than you can get on your own. Most women are starting to understand the benefits of these networks and they are growing in size and popularity.  I strongly believe it is better working together than doing it alone, and by supporting another woman you get a sense of community, support plus you are more likely to succeed.

As a mum of 3 young boys I can definitely vouch for this. The juggle of being a working mum and owner of a startup business, Happetite FoodI definitely have my tough days, but I am really lucky to have an amazingly supportive group of women around me. From the great mums at school who I share drops offs, play dates and pick ups when one of us is running late, to the support and encouragement of my mentor (Thanks you Leona Watson @ Cheeky Food Group), and more recently to the amazing group of like minded women that are part of the Women’s Business School program. These women support me personally, professionally and socially and I am very grateful to have them.

On a tough day at work it is so refreshing to know you have the support of a friend to vent to. When you are struggling with a challenge in your workplace or with your own business, to have a network of women that understand your challenges and can help you through it without judgment is priceless.  These challenges are part of our everyday lives and can seem overwhelming and daunting when dealing with on our own but as a combination of brains (or the brains trust as I call it), they can be worked through and resolved much more easily.

Look around you – you are surrounded by amazing women. If we all changed our mindset away from the competitive environment of being better than the person next to us and focused on supporting and helping each other grow and succeed, we could take our work, home and personal lives to a whole new level, and even enjoy a laugh and couple of glasses of bubbles along the way!

The truth is, that by raising each other up and collaborating rather than competing, we can make some amazing changes. Bring on more events and communities that support women supporting women in all aspects of our lives.

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THE MUMMY JUGGLE – its real..

So lets make it a team sport

Sleep in or get up and exercise? A daily battle in my brain. I know the exercise makes me feel better but as a sleep deprived mother of 3 it can be challenging after a broken nights sleep to get the motivation to get up and get going.

Having our third child has definitely changed my life. Don’t get me wrong, I love my kids to bits but life is now a never ending “To do list” and a whole new level of mess and noise in the house.

I shouldn’t complain. I am #blessed to have 3 healthy kids, yes 3 energetic boys aged 7,6 and 18 months and I am in start up stage of my business, Happetite Food that I absolutely love and am passionate about.People ask how I manage it, and honestly I have no idea, I don’t know any different, it’s the mummy and business juggle and its real. All I can suggest is find your tribe, ditch the guilt and build in some short cuts and some fun.

There are some days where I feel like super mum. I’ve made a meal, put 3 loads of washing on, done my exercise and got kids ready for school all by 8am. Yee ha to me. Other days I feel like I cant get enough caffeine into me (or it isn’t working anymore – maybe I need to switch to doubles shots of coffee?). I put the keys in the freezer, eat cheese and crackers for a meal and just want to crawl up on the lounge and watch Netflix all day and ignore all the chores and to do’s.

Motherhood – any way you participate in it is a juggle and can be crazy at times.

I’ve often wondered who it is easier for. Working mums, stay at home mums, mums with nannies, mums with au pairs, mums with amazing grandparents that look after kids? The reality is, its just not easy and everyone is participating in their own crazy little dance of juggling motherhood, while trying to keep a level of sanity.

After 3 kids I have come to realise that motherhood is not a competition but best played as a team sport. If we as mums can support each other any way we can then it makes all our lives a little easier. Supporting, rather than competing with those around us makes the journey a little more fun, a little easier and shows our kids that asking for help is ok and helping others is encouraged. 

I have recently moved to a lovely part of Sydney that has a very unique supportive community. As first I was a little skeptical about it, I couldn’t quite figure out why people wanted to help me out when they didn’t even know me. I have to admit I was a little stand-off-ish at first but once I started to get involved and help out others as well as them helping me, I realized that supporting those around you is not only beneficial for your family, your mental health and your family, it is also fun. Why be the mater and try and get it all done on your own when the people around you are juggling with the same battles.

Tap into your community, ask for help, give help and see what happens. From someone that was at first a little skeptical I can now admit that I love sharing the journey with my local community mums and having a laugh at “those days”. 

Motherhood – the juggle is real but it is so much more fun when you make it a team sport !!!

Written by Monique Treder, mum of 3 boys and owner of Happetite Food, sending gifts of food to the people you care about. http://www.happetitefood.com.au

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To Gift Voucher or Not???

Thoughts on Gift Vouchers?

I am sure I am not the only person that has a few expired Gift Vouchers sitting in one of their drawers at home.
When you receive a Gift Voucher it is always with great excitement and pleasure and I cannot quite figure out why I, and a great percentage of the population fail to redeem them within the validity period.
When I started up my company, Happetite Food I decided that our Gift vouchers wouldn’t have an expiry date on them. I believe if someone has spent the time and money choosing a gift voucher for you then you should have plenty of time to decide when to use it.
Last year I was gifted a voucher for a facial to a beauty salon. My birthday happened to fall two weeks after my third son was born so there was no way I was getting to the beauty salon in those first few months with a newborn baby. When I did manage to get around to checking out the voucher and calling them up to book it I realised it had a 6 month validity and was out of date, needless to say I was extremely disappointed to hear this and I am sure the person who gave it to me would have actually liked me to enjoy what they had gifted.
Formerly it was up to the business to set a validity date on their Gift Vouchers, but since the start of 2018 the legislation has changed. Now a Gift voucher has a minimum of 2 years validity and some even have a buffer period that you can still redeem them for a month or so after the expiry date.
I was so happy to hear this as I think it is only fair for the consumer to be given a greater amount of time to redeem this gift that has been paid for but not yet redeemed.
I can also see this from the point of view of a small business owner having too many outstanding gift vouchers can cause problems with balancing the books and stock but this can be seen as an opportunity to check in with your customers and encourage them to use their vouchers before they expire. I know as a customer that this level of customer service would really impress me and I would spread the word about what a great company they were.
Unfortunately I missed out on the facial early this year but with the new legislation in place from March 2018, myself and a great deal many other consumers will now be given a much longer period of time to enjoy our gift vouchers and maybe even get a little bit of “me time”.

If you have any questions about Gift Vouchers, the legislation about them or a Happetite Gift Voucher please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Monique @ Happetite Food Gifts
www.happetitefood.com.au

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Timing is important

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When a friend or family member is going through a challenging time you just want to reach out and help. This is one of the reasons why I set up the business, Happetite Food.

In these times when life is really challenging it can be difficult to know how to help and the best timing. Let’s take one of my own personal experiences as an example. When I lost my grandfather it was a very sad time for family. He was an amazing man and although he lived to the ripe old age of 94 his passing was a huge loss to our family, friends and community.

On the day of my grandfather’s passing and for the couple of days afterwards my grandmother received dozens of bunches of flowers, wreaths and bouquets. We just didn’t have enough vases for them all and although my grandmother and mother were very grateful to all who sent these gifts and kind gestures one of the most practical items that was sent to the house was a platter of food.

At the time my family bonded together to arrange funeral details, grieve and share stories of what a wonderful man he was. The platter that was delivered was perfect to share with the many family members and visitors that came to visit on those first few days. The timing of this gift of food was perfect.

What really surprised me was that a few weeks after the funeral when the flowers started to die and the visitors reduced the reality really set in. My grandmother was on her own and the grieving stage had only just begun.
I often get asked when is a good time to send people a food gift? Whether the occasion is a new baby, illness or bereavement I often suggest that the best timing is a few weeks after as this is often the hardest time for the recipient and moment when a home cooked meal is most needed.

My grandfather’s passing and a couple of other times in my life are the reason I started my business, Happetite Food. It was really hard to watch my grandmother go through this and as much as all our family chipped in and cooked her some meals, I know this is not possible for everyone and also quite hard to do when you are managing work and family.

The reality is, a gift of a home cooked meal is always a lovely gesture and something that nurtures and soothes someone in need. Next time you are sending a package maybe consider the timing of the delivery to ensure they know someone is thinking of them even after the flowers have died and visitors have gone.

For more information about Happetite Food Gifts please visit: www.happetitefood.com.au Sending Feel-Good Food Gifts to the people you care about

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