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I want to set up a business being a sort of Mary Poppins/Indispensable/Extra Pair of Hands/Concierge type thing - advice?

(18 Posts)
cherrytreeblossom Sun 14-Jun-09 23:22:21

Would you use something like this? Could it work?

I have always thought about setting up something like this but never get that far.

My idea is that I would basically be a sort of "Girl Friday" in the background of a family to keep the balls in the air and everything ticking over.

Im thinking with the recession being on many mothers may have had to return to work and are struggling.

Or maybe having to cutback and getting rid of cleaners etc

I am a registered childminder, have completed doula training, maternity nanny training, sleep consultant training, I sometimes babysit for people, I have a couple of cleaning jobs, take ironing in sometimes.

The service I would offer would be:

No commitment other than the hourly pay for whichever service they are using.

For example you may need overnight weekend childcare, whilst there I would get some ironing done and clean.


You have a hair appointment so I would care for kids and pick up dry cleaning and some bread and milk, get dinner started before you arrive back.


you may need some help getting your toddler to sleep during the night.


things may be getting a bit stressful and you would like some help with the after school mad time after the birth of a new baby.

you want to arrange a mobile hairdresser to come round and sort your roots out (I'd arrange)

Im sure you get my drift...

It is a very raw idea at the moment but wanted some opinions on how it might work.

Would also like some input on names

I have considered


Not enough hours in the day


Family Assistant

Family Concierge

cherrytreeblossom Sun 14-Jun-09 23:24:03

Sorry meant to add

My mind keeps flicking between the above idea and concentrating on being a Baby Whisperer type consultancy - troubleshooting etc

Which would be more viable?

Shitemum Sun 14-Jun-09 23:31:13

Sounds like a good idea to me but might be best to advertise all the services seperately, I mean the person who wants a babysitter doesnt need to know you are also a doula. Tho she might be able to recommend you to a friend who wants a doula once she finds out...

'MyClone' is my suggestion for a name. I often wish there were 2 of me so I could get everything done that has to be done, the way I want it!

Also, reading the name again it sounds like 'cyclone' suggesting a busy person who sweeps everything up and deals with it for you.

cherrytreeblossom Mon 15-Jun-09 08:51:44

Hey, that is a really good idea actually about MyClone!

Thank You!

cherrytreeblossom Mon 15-Jun-09 13:53:42

anyone else with any thoughts?

TantieTowie Mon 15-Jun-09 18:24:12

Sounds like a great idea - there are just times when you can't get anyone to cover for you and you really need a bit of help to get something done - a bit like a surrogate extended family really. I think it would work very well indeed. You'd need to employ people ultimately because you wouldn't be able to spread yourself thin enough.
Whereabouts are you based

TheBolter Mon 15-Jun-09 18:43:04

I think its a really great idea, but you would need to market yourself really efficiently. You need to come across and professional yet not too expensive and out of most people's leagues. (I'm kind of assuming you won't charge the earth?)

You need to make sure you come across as being ready at a moment's notice - I imagine that a lot of your new customers will call you on the spur of the moment.

You'll need to advertise EVERYWHERE - local press ads, posters in schools and playgroups, flyers in book bags (if allowed) etc...

Good luck!

TheBolter Mon 15-Jun-09 18:43:49

sorry, that was meant to say 'as professional' ...

CaramelisedOnions Tue 23-Jun-09 22:19:25

Cherry Tree!
Hi, I have thought about doing a similar thing but without the childcare bit...want to get away from them.

I want to aim at the corporate market of women who are time poor and cash rich. Do you want to buddy up on this to get started? I really only have just the idea at the moment although I did go on a business link course a while ago (not much help....)

CaramelisedOnions Wed 24-Jun-09 21:32:16


oranges Wed 24-Jun-09 21:36:16

who is your target market? while most mothers would love to have someone do this, I can't imagine many who actually, and would pay for it. I think advertising and providing each job seperately would be better, tbh, or people won't know what you are for!

CaramelisedOnions Wed 24-Jun-09 21:52:46

I agree!

We would all love someone to do all the jobs we hate but wouldn't dream of paying anyone to do it.

That is why I suggested my target market was corporate types who were cash rich and time poor. There are still plenty of them around...

oranges Wed 24-Jun-09 22:03:45

but a lot of corporate types have housekeepers, nannies and personal assistants already. Companies like offer the things you do, but at the very high end of the market, which is why i was asking who you intend to target.

CaramelisedOnions Thu 25-Jun-09 08:19:26


Fayrazzled Thu 25-Jun-09 08:35:17

I think the short notice, occasional childcare might be the best angle- especially with the summer holidays coming up. I have had dental treatment recently necessitating a few visits and I need to go to see my GP about medication I'm taking but feel like I've called in all my favours with friends. i'd definitely pay for someone to watch the children for a couple of hours, or do the pre-school run, so I could attend appointments, or even have my hair done etc.

CantSleepWontSleep Thu 25-Jun-09 08:35:52

are you looking to make a full time living out of this, or just bring in a bit of extra cash? Can you drop your own family commitments at a moment's notice? It's the sort of service that I could be interested in, but only if my children had met you and felt comfortable with you.

debola Sat 27-Jun-09 00:27:29

This is uncanny. I was thinking about doing the same thing mainly because when I was working all hours, everything suffered .. never had time to do anything outside work. I know there are a lot of professional pple out there, and this cuts across gender, who would be happy to pay for this service but reliability is key. I will be targetting the busy bees in the city who can't afford the high charges/red tape etc of biggies like I guess, as with any business, if you are passionate about your idea, selling it is a doddle. I should know. Good luck.

Peckarolloveragain Sat 19-Sep-09 22:42:03

Caramalisedonions are you about? would love to buddy up on this, had missed your message all that time ago!!

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