Today we chat to Mompreneur Tiffini Wissing Hein, the founder of Cool (kids’) Cabs.
If you are a mom who is building a startup or who already owns a business, please get in touch! I want to feature you.
Meet Tiffini Wissing Hein
31-year-old entrepreneur who is a mom to a host of children – Sophie-Mae (5), Harvey (4), Baby C (1), Baby M (7 months) and Baby T (12 weeks).
Please note: Baby C, M and T are in Foster care and place of safety with Tiffini.
I love the juggle of working parenthood and delight in my role in both spheres.
About Cool (Kids’) Cabs
Cool (kids’) Cabs is a personalized transportation service that prides itself on safety. Whilst traditional scholar transport operators focus on simply getting children to destinations, Cool (kids’) Cabs is aimed at providing a holistically safe environment for children in transit, whilst providing parents with complete peace of mind.
They are proud to employ only lady drivers – both for their maternal instinct and their (statistically safer) driving. Each of their amazing employees is not only an experienced driver but also a nurture who is well versed in child care. Our team are all extensively trained in childcare, car seat installation, advanced driving, hijack prevention and more. Cool (kids’) Cabs vehicles are fitted with state of the art technology enabling hands-free communication and live tracking, as well as onboard cameras. And their control room monitors every single movement whilst on the roads, reporting back to parents regularly along the way.
How did you come up with the name of your company?
Old School Cool (the name of the registered company) was conceptualized through our desire to marry traditional values with modern day technology. The (Old School) values still play a guiding role in everything we do, and our state of the art (Cool) technology, is at the forefront of our safety offering.
How long have you been running your own business? What were you doing before this?
Since 2009. Prior to this I studied law, worked as a manager in restaurants and au paired. Entrepreneurship was always in my blood.
What is the hardest part about running your own business?
Someone once said to me, ‘if you don’t have cash flow constraints, you don’t have a business’. Whilst I still think it poor advice, it is prudent. Managing cash flow, especially when responsible for the provision for the number of families which we support, is always a challenge.
But for me personally, the hugest challenge has been understanding that not all people prescribe to ‘old school’ values. Learning to be less trusting of people in the business world has been a huge learning curve for me.
Which social media platform do you love/hate the most and why?
I am a little ‘old school’ when it comes to social media – and whilst I would love to be able to Insta-Tweet-Face way better than I can, I really live primarily in a Facebook world.
Name 3 goals for 2018 that you want to achieve?
1. I want to launch our Pretoria operation.
2. I want to expand our Cape Town branch to fill its ten vehicles.
3. I would like to register a charity which I can utilise to expand my care of vulnerable children.
What motivates you to get out of bed every day?
I am a big supporter of the art of embracing life and work hard to ensure that I am only investing my energy in tasks that I enjoy and/or that feed me in some positive way. As such, I have ample motivation to get up daily. Being a mom, foster mom and place of safety adds a hugely rich element to my life, and my ‘work’ within this sphere certainly gives tremendous meaning to life. Empowering women through Cool (kids’) cabs, whilst simultaneously simplifying the life of other parents, is another huge motivator to get up each morning!
How do you manage your successful career while being a mom?
What is success? I am not sure I could ever deem myself to have a successful career – there is always so much more to do. However, I certainly derive a huge sense of accomplishment from being able to simultaneously work and enjoy my children. With five children under the age of five, I have learnt not to sweat the small things, and I really feel that this understanding allows me to play in each world, in an equally engaged manner.
What is the best advice you’ve ever received about motherhood?
I am yet to receive good advice on motherhood. Whilst this facetious comment isn’t entirely true, I do truly feel that the advice given to mothers is so often just useless and is so incredibly subjective. Having parented a number of children, I have become increasingly aware of the fact that my role as a mother is so vastly different to each child, and that my relationship with each of my children is so completely unique. It is thus near impossible to take any advice and apply it to two children! With that said, I firmly stand by the advice that your relationship with your husband should come first.
What has surprised you the most about being a mom?
Can I swear?! It is f*&*ing hard! The only thing that you know for sure is that EVERYTHING is a phase! Child sleeping today? Don’t worry, tomorrow it will change! Things crazy today? Tomorrow will be better! I’m not anything like the mom I thought I would be – but I am slowly becoming increasingly ok with that!
What are your top tips for balancing work life and home life?
Have a clear purpose and understanding of why you are doing the things you are doing. The juggle is hard – if you don’t know why you’re doing it, it is easy to feel guilty.
Understand very clearly what the difference between ‘service’ and ‘sacrifice’ is. Know that the side effect of ‘service’ is fulfillment yet the side effect of ‘sacrifice’ is often resentment. Being a martyr isn’t servicing your cause. Position yourself in such a way that you are of service to your children, family and work – rather than continually being in a state of sacrifice for them.
What popular entrepreneurial advice do you agree/ disagree with? Why?
I am a big believer in the need to find your ‘why’ (Simon Sinek). I also strongly agree with Richard Branson’s statement that “Clients do not come first, Employees come first. If you take care of your Employees, they will take care of your Clients.’
Who has been your inspiration in the business world?
Interestingly, only in recent months have I realized that I have been spurred on to take the risks I do in business, by my late grandfather, Colin Andersen. As a young girl, he allowed (and encouraged) me to work alongside him on various tasks normally reserved for ‘boys’. Only now do I realize how forward thinking this amazing man was – exposing me to woodwork and roof climbing and drilling and the like. He truly taught me that my gender should not stop me from doing anything. His tireless efforts moved his family from extreme poverty to the space I find myself in now. What an incredible legacy to leave.
Share some of your failures and the best lessons you have learned from them?
Trust your gut. Every single failure I have experienced in business goes back to me not trusting my gut. YOU are the best mother for YOUR children. YOU are the best leader for YOUR business. You are the expert in both these things. DO not be undermined by ‘educated’ onlookers!
How do you define success?
I think this question requires each person to assess and understand their own personal goals. For me, whilst profits are wonderful, the goal of Cool (kids’) Cabs was never just about money. Cool (kids’) Cabs is first, and foremost, an empowerment platform. This extends further than just our employees (who are the first and very important tier of this empowerment dream), through to our wonderful clients who we hope are empowered by the focused time that opens up as a result of using our service.
What advice would you give to a Mompreneur who is just starting out?
Work out your ‘why’! The rest will follow.
For more information visit www.coolkidscabs.co.za.
Photography by www.ironrose.co.za.
Catch up on our previous interview with the Founder of Encore Clothing.
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