Job title: Founder and CEO, TheGroceryGame.com
Advice to entrepreneur moms: "Learn to ask for things your way, and expect it that way as a businesswoman."
Gault was a Web pioneer, hatching the idea for TheGroceryGame.com, a membership site that aggregates printable grocery coupons by location, in the late 1990s. "I found myself at a point where I had to do something to make more money, and the Internet was starting to really pick up," she told Kiplinger. Back then, Gault was working part-time as a professional singer and raising two sons, while her husband, Greg, worked as a stunt coordinator for TV and film. When Hollywood unions went on strike in 1999, he was out of work, so the family had to adjust.
Gault began to clip coupons and watch sales cycles. She knew she was onto something when regular trips to the grocery store started to cost her only $30 for $100 worth of food. Gault registered for a free Web development course and began building the site, which launched in February 2000.
The biggest issue for her family was the severe change to their daily routine. "I was working from home, and they had to learn how to respect that space. My kids had to adjust to their dad doing things for them I could no longer do, because I was running a company." By 2003, Gault had 26 franchise locations and hired her husband to help run the business. In 2011, the company earned a reported $12 million in revenue. Today, she has franchise locations in all 50 U.S. states and seven foreign countries.
[Related: What not to give for Mother's Day]
Gault advises moms who are starting businesses to stand their ground: "Learn to ask for things to be done your way -- and expect it that way as a businesswoman. As mothers, we're often used to pleasing other people; in business you have to wear the pants."
Job title: President and designer, Pamella Roland
Advice to entrepreneur moms: "Learn not to sweat the small stuff."
A native of Grand Rapids, Mich., DeVos worked for ten years in corporate marketing and public relations, followed by a brief stint living abroad with her husband, Dan, and their three children in Japan. When they returned stateside, rather than going back to the business world, DeVos decided to pursue her longtime love of fashion. In 2002, she launched her clothing line, Pamella Roland.
"Fashion is a tough business," DeVos told Kiplinger, "and it typically takes a number of years of investing before it becomes a financial success." Luckily for her, the clothing line got picked up by Neiman Marcus in its first year. In 2003, the brand won the Gold Coast Fashion Award, a prestigious industry award recognizing the best new design talent. In 2010, DeVos was inducted into the Council of Fashion Designers of America. For 2011, the company reported annual sales of nearly $10 million, close to double from the previous year.
For the past decade, DeVos has split her time between the family's home in Michigan and her offices in New York City. When she's out of town, DeVos makes it a point to check in with her husband and kids every day. Her two daughters are in their early twenties, and her son is still in high school. DeVos reminds other women that it's important to "Learn not to sweat the small stuff. This isn't always easy because mothers put pressure on themselves to always make everyone else happy. . . . If you know you're working hard and trying your best, cut yourself some slack."
Job title: Founder, The Corcoran Group, "Today" show contributor and author
Advice to entrepreneur moms: Build "time walls" to help separate your personal and professional lives.
Corcoran started her real-estate company in 1973, overcoming self-doubts about being one of the only women in the male-dominated New York market. It wasn't until the late 1990s that The Corcoran Group started to make million-dollar profits. She sold the company in 2001 for $66 million.
Corcoran became a mother at the age of 45 in 1994 -- 21 years after becoming an entrepreneur. "Looking back on it, I know there's no way I could've juggled starting up a business and motherhood at the same time," she told Kiplinger. "It's a hard thing to do now, even when I'm not as busy as I was then." Her son, Tommy, is now 18; Corcoran adopted her daughter, Katie, now 6 years old, in 2005.
Nowadays, she serves as the resident real estate expert on NBC's "Today" show and is an investor on ABC's reality show "Shark Tank." She has also written three books. When it comes to finding that perfect balance between home and work, Corcoran believes it's good in theory, but she has yet to find it. She does, however, believe strongly in keeping both worlds separate. "When I go home at night, I'm focused on my family. If I'm away traveling for business, I'm on Skype with them at dinner time. I build these 'time walls' so that the minute I walk in the door at home, I'm not texting, e-mailing or taking work calls."
More from Kiplinger: