When you hear the term 'mompreneur' what image do you conjure up in your mind? Apparently, it can mean all kinds of different things.
According to wikipedia's crowdsourced definitions, a mompreneur is "a female business owner who is actively balancing the role of mom and the role of entrepreneur." So, basically, any mom who is an entrepreneur (unless maybe she admits she has absolutely no balance in her roles?). This is consistent with the definition provided by MOMpreneur magazine.
According to wisegeek, a mompreneur is "a newly coined term for women who establish businesses at home while also acting as the full time parent of their children." So this definition seems to add the requirement for the business to be home-based and the children to be in the full-time care of the mom to the requirement.
Similar, but somewhat different, Sharon Vinderine, the founder of Parent Tested, Parent Approved says that the difference between being a mompreneur and an entrepreneur is having office space outside the home and having employees with dedicated office hours.
Personally, I think of someone as a mompreneur if they are selling a mom/child focused product or service. So I wouldn't call an accountant working from home while taking care of her children a mompreneur, but I would think of someone working out of the home running a business with 100 employees as a mompreneur if she had a nursing bra business. I would think of a consultant offering infant sleep advice as a mompreneur, but I wouldn't think of a consultant offering Internet security advice as a momprenenur (regardless of their work location and child care arrangements).
So there are three, maybe four, vastly different definitions of what a mompreneur is. Overall, the criteria could include:
- Is a mom
- Works in some capacity
- Is taking care of her kids
- Is working out of her home
- Is selling a product or service that is targeted at moms
But what about dads? When do they become dadpreneurs?
Is a male business owner who is trying to balance his business and family life a dadpreneur? Male entrepreneurs outnumber female entrepreneurs 2 to 1, so that unless most male entrepreneurs are childless, there should be many more dadpreneurs out there than mompreneurs. Are dads who work from home dadpreneurs, especially if their kids are around some or all of the time? Are dads who own companies selling strollers or toys dadpreneurs? What about a dad who is at home with his kids during the day and runs a personal training business in the evening when his white collar professional wife gets home from her job? Is he a dadpreneur?
According to Doug French (@LOD), the definition is as follows:
Dadpreneur (n): An absolutely terrible word that should not be used by anyone ever.
This whole discussion is similar to the mommy blogger versus blogger discussion. Very few men get called "daddy bloggers", but almost every female blogger who has children is assumed to be a "mommy blogger" even if she is writing about technology, politics, food or animal rights.
In entrepreneurship and in blogging, as well as in many other things in life, it seems as though society assumes that men have compartmentalized their lives whereas women become primarily a mom once they have children. I wonder if this is a reflection of what truly happens in our society, where women do still take on the bulk of the child care and household tasks, even if it is changing in some individual households. Or is it an attempt, intentional or not, to keep "mommies" in their place and ensure that they are always putting their children at the centre of their universe, even if we don't have the same expectation of dads?
What do you think? If you are a mom and an entrepreneur, do you consider yourself a mompreneur? What is your definition? If you are a dad and an entrepreneur, do you consider yourself a dadpreneur?