I have lucked out! School of Styling founders, Indy and Em are within my mom entrepreneur circles so I get first news on their offerings! A few months back, I attended their intimate launch which featured a workshop on whimsical paper flowers.
I am forever curious about women (specifically mothers!) and their passions so I interviewed Em about SOS (School Of Styling):
Monica: Tell me why and how you started School of Styling? Maybe share your personal backgrounds and how you came together for this project.
Em: It is one of Indy's long time dreams. We were just talking about it one night. My core competencies are business development, developing businesses from ground up, business strategies, trouble shooting, sales and marketing, diversification and international business development. I was an expat for more than 10 years, lived in 13 different countries and was in senior positions for over 7 years. And Indy's core competencies are creatives and styling. So, we married both our strengths. There is a good fit and a very good working relationship between us. We trust each other. It was a natural progression.
School of Styling Philippines is not only for mothers though. Our target demographics reach far beyond motherhood. As seen in our previous workshops, we have kids as young as 5 year olds joining the workshops and grandmas. We have several fathers and single men who joined, too.
Monica: Explain your work dynamics? Who does what between Indy and Em?
Em: Indy handles all the styling, sourcing, teaching and I handle everything else :)
Monica: As mothers, how do you balance the time for family, work and extra curricular activities?
Em: Develop a strong support network. Indy has her own team and I have my own team. Both are highly efficient and reliable. If we want to do more things, we need to help and develop people and train them to do things the way we want it done. Sometimes we let them handle things also. You'll be surprised by how much one can accomplish when we allow people to help us.
Monica: If money was not an issue, what would you do for work? Share your deepest passions, please :)
Em: I would travel the world, get into fitness, get into more creative stuff like professional floral designs, photography and spend of course more time with family. I am already spending more time with them as compared to average Filipino moms. But, we are living in a real world where money is needed, and we need to work. I would also want to learn "usable" skills. When my husband and I lived in Africa, I wish I knew how to cut my own hair, do my own nails, know how to cook, know more about natural medicine.
Monica: What do you do for yourselves as "mommy time out time"?
Em: The usual facial care, massage, mani+pedi, brow grooming, haircut, and reading a chapter from a book. When I get invited to events and the kids are not with me, I treat that as my "me-time" already. When they start going to school, I'd like to think I'll have more time to myself. If I'll spend and invest on "me-times", it would be travels :)
Monica: In your quotes and messages, you encourage people to love what they do or go for their dreams, how best do you think to do this for mothers who have a lot on their plates?
Em: Secure your finances first. Whether we like it or not, money plays a big part in our daily lives. I can do what I do because we have savings, we have steady income. In the absence of that, it'll be hard. I hate it when people say don't worry about money. Because it is not applicable to everyone. In my case, I spent many years in corporate world. I was an expat for over 10 years. I didn't love what I was doing. It was never my dream job. But it "equipped" me for the world I am moving in now. I can live in any country and start my own business or make my own money without looking for employment - and that's thanks to my previous job "that I never liked." Now I am pursuing many things, mostly related to my passion, and marrying it to my core competencies. But prior to that, it's all about training, exposure, experience, learning, equipping myself, learning, learning, learning.
For mothers, it is not as easy, specially if they are the ones putting food on the table. But my advise is, if you really want to do what you love and go for your dreams, have a plan! Calculate your risks! Prepare for it.
Monica: And lastly (because I love travel so much!), where would you dream of going with your families this summer and why.
Em: This summer, we are going to Vietnam. And probably US to attend an expo. It is not our dream destination, but we need to go there for business. If dream destinations, I would love to go to Bhutan, Peru, Mongolia :) I have a long bucket list. But this is my top 3.
The next School Of Styling workshop (happening today!) is pretty amaaazing. It seriously pains me like torture not to attend. Shall we clamor for a repeat performance?!
Do yourself a favor and sign up for a workshop or two or three this year!
School of Styling Philippines