Mumpreneur: CEO of Nanny Centre Talks on the Importance of Professional Childcare
‘No step is too small as long as you are moving forward’ – Simisola Obasanya
NMO had the opportunity to interview Simisola Obasanya, CEO of Nanny Centre. Her business is close to the hearts of parents as it deals with the proper training of care givers, which most would agree is key to be a nanny or au pair. Please read on to discover more about this wonderful mum of two and entrepreneur.
Q. Tell us more about yourself.
A. My name is Simisola Obasanya. I’m one member of a beautiful family of 4. I am currently CEO Of Nanny Centre, and well, that also makes me a full time nanny to my kids.
Q. What were you doing prior to starting your business?
A. I worked in financial services, banking precisely, for close to 11 years.
Q. How did you get the idea for your business?
A. When I had my first child, I couldn’t imagine leaving him with anyone that wasn’t family. Luckily I had my mum, mum-in-law, and lots of family, so i didn’t really need a nanny. I also knew that not everyone in my situation had that luxury, most had to make do with help that mostly had no clue. So the idea of setting up a training school for childcare professionals came up. My husband and I actually had the “light bulb moment” during a Sunday afternoon discussion.
Q. Tell us about your business.
A. Nanny Centre is first a training centre for individuals who want to start or advance a career in childcare. We train people who can go on and work in creches, nurseries, or in homes as nannies. We also have the agency that help find work for those we have trained, and the consultancy service for safety evaluation and childproofing.
Q What were your goals when you started the business?
A. Really, to improve the quality of childcare in Nigeria. It’s really bothersome when you find someone who can’t tell their left from right being left in charge of a whole human being. I get that sometimes people don’t have options. So I thought, lets try to create options and see if people take it.
Q. Where would you like to see your business in the mid/long term?
A. I’m hoping that more parents will opt for professional childcare. The professional childcare industry is really huge outside Nigeria. I hope that someday soon, unskilled childcare will be history in Nigeria, and Nanny Centre will be a huge part of that change.
Q. How did you get your first customers?
A. Friends and family. I literally harassed my family and friends to send their nannies or sponsor one. I dropped proposals with schools as well. As they needed to have a good understanding of written and oral English, I didn’t get as many as I would have liked.
Q. When did you first become a mum?
A. 7 plus years ago.
Q. Tell us about your experience.
A. At being a mom? Its been wonderful. It’s not the easiest role in the world, but definitely the most rewarding.
Q. What was the most useful baby product you had?
A. I would say the baby pillow. U shaped thing you feed with. The regular pillow didn’t help much with breastfeeding. Someone got me the U shaped one, and it was a blessing.
Q. How do you balance family, work and business commitments i.e juggle motherhood and work?
A. My family has always been my priority. Truth is it is a lot easier with what I do now. I mostly can plan my weekday to make out time for school runs etc. I hardly ever work weekends. My workday ends about the same time my kids close from school which is cool.
Q. What is the best advice you have ever received as a mum?
A. “Pick your battles, don’t sweat the little things”. I honestly don’t remember who said this to me, but it stuck and it has helped me a lot!
Q. How would you advise someone who will like to start their own business, particularly a mum?
A. Don’t procrastinate. Starting small allows you to start now. Find out all you need to get it going and start working on them. No step is too small as long as you are moving forward.
For services by Nanny Centre, please, see contact details below.