entrepreneur, determined, family

Kelly Wales recognised the importance of building a community among working military spouses who feel isolated and in need of support. Kelly founded Military Mums in Business to do just that.

What is your career background?

I left Loughborough University with a degree in Computing and Management and went on to work in industry for a few years before deciding to train as a Primary School teacher. I taught for many years before being promoted to Assistant Headteacher. Since having my children I have worked part-time as a teacher but this has become difficult due to our short military postings.

Where did the idea for your business come from?

Since leaving a career in teaching I wanted to start a business which I could work round my children and frequent homes moves.. I have chosen to change my career because of circumstance and I know many other wives have also had to re-train or start their own business. I wanted to bring us together in one place, so that we can support each other and create a business network.

How did you move from the ‘idea’ to the actual business?

I attended a free 5 day course ran by PopUp Business School. They gave me the confidence I needed to turn my idea into reality. They provided practical advice, workshops, information and support.  I also spoke to other spouses in business, who were telling me they needed a business network.

What have been the main high and lows in starting your own business?

The main low to begin with was definitely self belief, the constant battle with ‘am I good enough, do I know enough?’ And I’m sure I will continue to have this battle every day. However I am truly passionate about building a successful business network to help as many spouses in business as I can. The highs are definitely messages of gratitude from my members, thanking me for given them a platform to showcase their business but also giving them the opportunity to network.

Can you describe / outline your typical day

After the children are at school I spend about an hour a day online across Twitter, Instagram and Facebook connecting with female spouses. I find out about their business and ask them if they would like to collaborate with me. I then send time scheduling posts and writing content, to ensure the piece about them will reach a wide audience.

I will try and go LIVE in my Facebook group to speak directly to my members. I will pass on information from training courses and have an open discussion.

I will organise Networking events in my local area, book speakers and advertise the events.

I work in the evenings after the children are in bed, on self-development. I take part in online courses and research information which I know will benefit my members.

I also try and fit in spinning, the gym and meeting friends for the occasional cuppa or two!!

What motivates you?

Knowing that I am providing a platform for military wives to showcase their businesses in an environment which they know is supportive. I am passionate about helping people.

What has been your proudest moment?

Receiving messages of gratitude from the women who I have met and helped.  Also being contacted by companies asking whether our members would like to collaborate with them.

How has being an entrepreneur affected your family life?

It has given me back a feeling of self-worth, which in-turn has given me back the confidence i lost when i stopped teaching. I work when the children are at school and once they have gone to bed. At the moment I am trying to maintain a good balance, as managing various social media accounts and being present within my members group can be time consuming.

What three adjectives describe your strengths?

Personable, resilient, passionate.

As a military spouse, what has been your biggest obstacle when trying to balance work/kids/your spouses’ military commitments?

I started Military Mums In Business to eliminate the struggle of trying to balance work with raising a young family. Not having a support network around us has been the most challenging aspect of our lives.

What advice would you give fellow Military spouses who want to get back into work, retrain for a new career or start their own business?

Do not view change as a negative aspect of military life, change can bring new and exciting opportunities. Invest in yourself, and attend as many courses being offered to you as you can. This will help you to make the choice as to whether you go back to work or to start your own business.

For more information on Military Mums in Business visit them on Facebook: @militarymumsinbusiness or Twitter @militarymums


Happy spouses

Recruit for Spouses found us someone who was far and above the expectations we had hoped for and would always recommend, and recruit from them in future.

5

Mark Moseley, Director PestGone Environmental

I was able to secure a permanent position due to the experience I gained through the Liquid Workforce and I am very grateful I was allowed to be part of it.

5

Melanie de Klerk

‘I was very impressed with the quality and depth of talent that RFS can provide to employers across many types of role. I have no doubt (they) will be a huge asset to any employer working in digital marketing, social media marketing and associated roles’.

5

Andy Mihalop, Head of Channel Partner Marketing EMEA - Facebook

They helped me free up important time to work on my business by finding me a fantastic, dedicated, kind and communicative administrative assistant.

5

Emily Foster

RFS was...a platform for spouses who understood my struggles and my challenges. It felt like I came to them in pieces, deflated and very defeated and they (RFS) pieced me back together.

5

Rusila Halofaki

RFS are offering an amazing, unique opportunity in the Liquid Workforce within the recruitment world...so many doors can be opened.

5

Kate Legg

Don't give up, amazing and flexible companies do exist and RFS are 100% the best people to help you find them.

5

Amie Hills Grey

RFS was and is the only platform that exists that really understands the struggles and plight of every Armed Forces spouse.

5

Rusila Halofaki

The competency amongst the military spouse community is unbelievably good and the fact all our candidates were happy with remote working made this ideal for us as a small business.

5

Michael Coates, COMBAT pest control

I found the course to be an excellent refresher of the skills I used in my previous roles, and also a confidence booster to me, proving that I can do it again

5

Melody Davies, Liquid Workforce

Helpful? It has been so much more. It has given me confidence and self-belief as well as motivation and inspiration.

5

B. Barber, Military Spouse

This experience has been more than helpful. It has been, in many ways, life changing.

5

B. Barber, Military Spouse