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Anyone in business will tell you that networking is a great way to build your business

As a Business Mum, it can be hard to attend networking events during child free time. Depending on your child, taking your child with you can work to your advantage.

Before you read on, think about your children, if they are particularly active and don’t like sitting quietly and colouring or doing a quiet activity, then it’s probably better to find a babysitter, or wait until there is an event you can attend when they are at school.

Before booking in to an event, call the organisers and let them know you have a child you will need to bring with you. Let them know the age of your child and, if the child is no longer a baby, that you will bring colouring books or another activity to keep your child busy during the session, and that you are prepared to take your child out of the room if they become noisy. There will be some organisers will request that you don’t bring your child with you; however there are some that are happy to accommodate both you and your child.

Before the event, prepare your child.

Let your child know what will happen at the event and what you expect from them. Pack a bag with activities for your child, and some snacks and drinks. Depending on the age of your child, they may want to choose their favourite colouring books to take with them. Dress your child appropriately for the event. Remember that your child is representing your business as much as you are.

During the event, keep your child close to you. If it is a sit down event, such as a breakfast or lunch, choose or request a seat near the back where there is room for your child to play on the floor near you while you listen to the speaker.

Depending on the age and cute factor of your child, and the event, your child can be a draw card for other networkers to say hello to you. They can be a great ice breaker. Your child will also help you and your business stand out and be memorable.

Following the event, you may want to reward your child’s good behaviour with a treat of some sort. Depending on the child, it might be watching a favourite video, a chocolate frog, or having a picnic lunch with Mummy.

They presence of my children have helped me stand out and be memorable. Both my children have attended networking events since they were small, and know how to represent my business beautifully.

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