THE clatter of a toy does not faze the group of 20 or so mothers gathered around an office table on a rainy Thursday morning chatting tax breaks in Borehamwood.
“We just kind of zone out from any noise in the room,” said mother Yvette Segal, 38. “We just give the kids something to do and then hope for the best.”
Next to the children’s play area the mothers sit at a large table surrounded by business cards and coffee cups as they listen to notes from a Powerpoint presentation about tax tips by mother and accountant Amy Taylor.
The women are part of a rapidly expanding group of nationwide mumpreneurs who network with other mothers in the area to gain business acumen, contacts and crucial advice on making it in the business world.
The group started more than a year ago in Borehamwood in April last year and meets every month.
Part of a national group called MumsClub, which was originally created in 2007, it allows mothers to bring their children along to the group.
Mrs Segal, from Borehamwood, organises the meetings and has been working as a virtual assistant after the birth of her children, Jake, five, and Chloe, three.
She said: “When I had my first child I realised I still needed an income.
“My husband is a lettings negotiator and on commission and with the property industry as it is it was necessary for me to work.
“We have had a few new people at the meetings recently and I find mums want to move on from the online network community and come to face-to-face business meetings like this.
“There are so many mums in the same position who need a kick-start and it certainly helped me out.”
Adriana Lokman, from Markyate, in Hertfordshire, works for not-for-profit business support company ESUDA, and goes to sessions across the county on behalf of MumsClub to provide advice.
She said: “It is ideal for mums, or mumpreneurs, to come here and bring their children as they get the best of everything. They get advice on business and the chance to have a good old gossip.
“I’ve brought my two-year-old son Isaiah who is going through the terrible twos but is never a problem at the meetings.
“It can be a nightmare for mums to go back to work but here they have the support of women going through the same thing.”
Joy Spiropoulos, from Borehamwood, has two children, Ameera, five, and Jameel, two, and works as a management accountant.
She said: “My husband told me about this group and coming here for the first time I have found it has all the right people to talk to.
“When you have your first baby you want to spend all your time with them but later as you have more children you need to think about work.
“I literally had my second child, my son, on the Saturday and went back to work on the Monday. I work from home and have learnt how to be flexible.
“Some weeks you’ll work at the weekends and sometimes into the night but it’s all worth it.”
For more details about the club, visit the website www.borehamwood.mumsbusinessclub.com, contact Yvette Segal on 07958 749025 or email firstname.lastname@example.org