Three weeks after giving birth to her youngest son, Paul, Maria Dalamaras jetted to Queensland with a valued business client to attend the largest boat show in the Southern Hemisphere.
"I call myself an octopus," she laughed. "I have a really strong support network and I know that they are there for my children when I'm unable to be there, to give them love and nurturing and the foundations they need when they're so young."
This is the crux of Mrs Dalamaras's business ethos, and the reason she has been selected as a finalist in the Customer Service category of the 2021 AusMumpreneur Awards, which supports Australian mums in business.
Mrs Dalamaras, 33, from Peakhurst Heights, is the Creative Director of Rio Consulting Group, which provides digital marketing services for small businesses.
While some marketing organisations are cooling their jets come 5pm, that's when Mrs Dalamaras gets going, helping some of her customers after 9pm when they've put the kids to bed.
I believe asking for help is the strong thing to do.- Maria Dalamaras
"I'm always there for my clients, through the good times and bad, and also through COVID," she told the Leader.
The flexibility of working for herself has allowed Mrs Dalamaras to provide that availability to her clients, who came from an eclectic range of industries including food and beverage, hairdressing, civil engineering, brokering, animal care, architecture and therapeutic services.
"A lot of small business mums are really struggling to find someone to help them with their website and social media at an affordable price," Mrs Dalamaras said.
"Before COVID, I was involved in networking groups for small businesses across the St George area, and around 80 per cent of my networking contacts have since become my clients.
"We pick up the phone and have a chat about business and also about being a mum."
She encouraged other mums to ask for help as it was the key to making a business dream a reality.
"We often dream big but we don't follow it up because we feel overwhelmed as a mum. But I believe asking for help is the strong thing to do," she said.
People's choice voting ends Friday, August 27 at ausmumpreneur.com/peoples-choice-voting
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