“Every time a child who is using my program has a little win, I have a win too.”
As a therapist for children with learning difficulties, it was difficult for Kylie Maidment of Switched-On Kids Cognition to see them not receiving the necessary support. To her, every child deserves to thrive. So with her PhD in Psychology, years of experience in the cognitive neuroscience field and the determination to help, Kylie founded Switched-On Kids Cognition.
Currently, Kylie provides parents with the tools, education and personalised support needed to boost their child’s cognitive skills. Through a ten-module program offered online, the parents are empowered to unlock their child’s full learning potential. And Kylie shares, “Every time a child who is using my program has a little win, I have a win too.”
Since founding Switched-On Kids Cognition, Kylie has prioritised moving from a space of isolation to connection. By joining the HerBusiness Network, she has found both a constant stream of inspiration and a supportive community. As she continues to grow her business, Kylie looks forward to empowering even more parents and children.
But when she has a bit of spare time, you might find Kylie spending time with her family, growing things in her native garden, attending pottery classes, or learning more about the brain, health and nutrition.
Who’s your favourite entrepreneur and why?
I cannot pick a favourite! I admire and respect any woman who has taken the leap into leaving a stable salary and job and decided to jump into the world of business. I go out of my way to purchase off small-business owners and female entrepreneurs.
Why did you start your business and what gave you the idea?
I started Switched-On Kids Cognition as I saw so many kids who had been to speech, OT, psych and still struggled with some of the basic skills that underlie learning (e.g., working memory, executive function skills). I did hours and hours of research to help my own child and realised that as a therapist (with a PhD in Psychology), I had the skills to empower parents to help their own children. By offering modules and support online, I empower parents to jump in the driver’s seat and help their child develop fundamental, life-long skills.
What do you enjoy most about running your own business?
I have really enjoyed the creative challenge. I did not realise how much I had to learn about the business world. Working online is very different to seeing kids in real life and requires some innovation. I love being able to connect with parents online and having the ability to provide them with practical support as well as specific activities and strategies that they can use to work with their child. I have really loved creating my own website and jumping into the world of blogs and social media.
What three pieces of advice do you wish you’d been given when you started?
- Research, research, research – do you have a market? Who is your ideal client and where will you find them.
- Mistakes are okay. Yes it will be “your fault” but fix it fast, learn from it and move on and don’t make the same mistake again as you know who you will have to blame :-).
- Find a tribe and connect. You can feel quite isolated to begin. HerBusiness Network provides me with a constant stream of information and inspiration.
What advice would YOU give someone thinking about starting a business?
It will be harder than you think! Make sure you have done your research. You must have passion and love for whatever it is you are selling. I love what I do and this motivates and inspires me every day. Every time a child who is using my program has a little win, I have a win too. Believe in yourself and believe in your product.
What skills and knowledge areas would you recommend those starting out in business get acquainted with quickly?
For me – creating my own website with Squarespace has been a huge advantage. I love the creative control I have (although I do need to stop tinkering). Understanding how to write good content is vital (there are loads of resources out there). If you will be using social media you will really need to get your head around how your preferred platforms run ads (this can be quite challenging). Connect with others as much as you can and do not be afraid to reach out and ask questions.
What does your IDEAL business look like? Even if you’re not there yet, what would it look like if your business was ideal?
My ideal business would have enough clients so that it was sustainable and I could make a living out of it. I am still in the very early days (my website went live February 2022). Ideally I would like to grow the business enough so that I could hire others who are more skilled at business administration. It would be wonderful to bring on another therapist one day who has complimentary skills. I would love loads of positive word-of mouth referrals from happy parents.
What problem does being a Member of the HerBusiness Network solve for you and your business? And, how?
Being a member of the HerBusiness Network has pulled me out of isolation and into a realm where I feel connected. The constant feed of information is really helpful. I feel inspired by the very clever ladies within the network.