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CEO Mom: What a Mom’s Time is Really Worth

Personal Finance

Do you consider yourself a working mom?

Back view of a mother and a small daughter walking together holding hands in the park

When I married my husband we had five babies in seven years and moved 11 times in 13 years. I left a nice job as a broker to have a more rewarding career as a SAHM (stay-at-home mom).

One of the questions that I frequently heard was, “Do you work?”

Even though I politely answered, “Yes, I work very hard as a stay-at-home mom,” I would think “What do you mean do I work?” Sometimes an unsuspecting person would then go on to say something more such as “Well, I meant do you really work? Do you have a job?”

I would bite my tongue until it bled….

What I wanted to say was, “What do you mean do I really work I’m an accountant, a contract administrator, a chauffeur, a nurse, a soccer mom, a stylist, a wife, and a chef! Plus 10 other job specialties! I do all these things as a mom—I’M A CEO MOM!”

They usually didn’t ask the same question twice.

These days as a financial writer, speaker, and a mom, I’ve talked with scores of spouses who work outside the home because of the status of our economy and by necessity—not by choice.

What a mom’s time is really worth

Each year, Salary.com issues a report on what a mom’s time is really worth. According to the site, “Based on a survey, Salary.com determined that the time mothers spend performing 10 typical job functions would equate to an annual salary of $113,568 for a stay-at-home mom. Working moms ‘at-home’ salary is $67,436 in 2013; this is in addition to the salary they earn in the workplace.”

That’s a lot of worth associated with this great job of motherhood!

By doing the mom wizard at Salary.com, you can log into a calculator that tells you what you would be paid on the economy for all the work you do as a SAHM or as a mom who also works outside the home and inside the home!

How effective is the mom’s work outside the home? Does it pay to work in today’s economy with rising prices and a modest hourly wage?

As an example, let’s look at Jennifer

Jennifer was an administrative assistant who needed to work outside the home to make ends meet. She made an average wage of $8.50 per hour and felt she contributed greatly to the family’s finances. She only had one child in day care, traveled a short distance to work, and paid no state income taxes.

Then Jennifer attended one of my Living Rich for Less seminars and was challenged with the idea of “crunching the numbers.” She completed our “Working Mom’s Compensation” form and was shocked. The online version of this is the “Hourly Wage Calculator” at Crown.org.

Jennifer discovered that by working full time, she was making $3 per week! She didn’t realize how those extra pizza nights (because she was too tired to cook), and the trips to the beauty salon (to maintain a professional hairstyle), and all those lunches (away from home) added up!

She realized she needed to make some dramatic adjustments. She decided there was a better use of her energy and quit her job outside the home.

But Jennifer didn’t stop there.

She implemented some money-saving strategies and is making ends meet at home. She now has less stress in her life and the freedom to contribute to her family’s financial needs through saving money and by launching her own home-based writing business. In her case, a penny saved was more than a penny earned.

The Working Moms Compensation Form - TaxACT

Once you come up with a figure, ask the big question.

Are my time, energy, and effort worth ______ dollars a week?

You’ll be surprised at how painless it is to cut back and save your family a significant amount of money.

Or, you may want to launch your own home-based business to make up the difference in income. After all, not all compensation is measured in dollars and cents.

On the other hand, you might discover that it is worth it to continue to work outside the home and that’s still a great choice—one that works for you and your family! Either way, having a rested, happy Mom on the home front is something that is important to your entire family.

Whether you are a SAHM or a mom who works outside the home—your work is priceless in terms of all you do for your family and for others. So take some much-needed and valued time for yourself!

That’s what this “working mom” is going to do!

What is your time worth?

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Photo credit: Edgar Barany via photopin cc

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