Bump and Baby Club Founder, Alex Kohansky (left of photo), and Chief Operating Officer, Paula Stracey, worked together in their previous careers making television documentaries. Here they share a bit about themselves and what life is like behind the scenes at Bump and Baby Club.
How did you meet?
ALEX: We first met 10 years ago at a TV production company – we were put together on a project following children taking part in an American talent convention. Within a few days of meeting we were on a plane to Florida, just the two of us, where we would spend the next few weeks in each other’s pockets. It was the start of many bizarre and awesome TV experiences together!
Why do you think you work well together?
ALEX: We think along the same lines about most things which helps, but I think the main reason is that we really value each other’s opinions.
PAULA: Also, it helps that the thing we both loved about working in documentaries is the thing we love most about Bump and Baby Club: working with people at a turning point in their lives. For us, the holy grail of documentary-making was finding the heartwarming moments in people’s stories – at Bump and Baby Club we’re surrounded by those moments (!) and our enjoyment and motivation for the job comes a lot from that.
What has been the best moment at Bump and Baby Club so far?
ALEX: For me it was the reunion of the very first antenatal course we organised. There were so many months of planning and thought that had gone into creating Bump and Baby Club, to get such positive responses and to see how they’d all bonded as a group was the best feeling. And of course it was amazing seeing them all with their babies!
PAULA: We’ll never stop getting a kick from hearing how our groups have bonded, or hearing what they’re getting up to – some of them have gone on holidays together and many have stayed friends years later. A standout moment for me was one of our recent events. We took over a warehouse venue for a whole day with a variety of workshops and classes and a catered lunch for 60 parents-to-be. It was the most ambitious event we’d ever organised and it all went brilliantly. The good vibes on the day left me buzzing!
What has been the most challenging thing so far?
ALEX: Probably the techy side of things… As Bump and Baby Club grows we’ve had to get to know a whole host of things we never knew before, from managing the website, to organising all of our data and logistics, and automating what we do in the back office. We’re on a steep learning curve, but have come far!
How do you manage to combine work and motherhood?
PAULA: We both have young babies so for the last few months our working days have been a bit ridiculous! We often bring the babies to meetings with us and there’s been lots of sling-wearing to keep them calm and quiet during phone calls. We’ve had countless interrupted conversations with each other, and found that late night emails are often the best way to communicate because that’s the time of least distractions!
ALEX: It’s more difficult to get stuff done and a world away from how we used to work in TV, but we’re both so motivated, we always get there in the end! I have two older kids too – 6 and 5 years old – and I definitely struggle with dividing my time between everything, let alone carving out some ‘me’ time and spending time with my husband. My new years resolution is to not work so late at night!