Elle Likopoulos, principal of Absolute Business Brokers and host of The Mumpreneurs Club Podcast, has been named the Ausmumpreneur of the Year 2020.
A mother of four kids under 10, including two 18-month old twins, she’s managed to successfully juggle motherhood while also remaining integral to the brokerage and her strength, resilience and creativity was rewarded during the awards held online via Zoom as thousands from around the country tuned in to encourage top mums, hitting their targets.
Ms Likopoulos, who knows that just making the shortlist was an honour, said she was “truly shocked” when they called out her name to announce the winner. “As a mum and business owner, you’re always playing this ‘tug of war’ between your family and business priorities,” she said. “During COVID, that tug of war has just been amplified. Trying to focus on your business with all the changes due to restrictions and homeschooling with four children in the house hasn’t been easy. Winning Ausmumpreneur of The Year has been that validation and recognition that I needed to silence any self-doubt that may have crept in during iso.”
Tina Tzanopoulos, another mother juggling work and motherhood, couldn’t contain her joy when Neos Kosmos spoke with her. “I nominated Elle because she’s an inspiration to me,” she said. “From an admin role I am now in a career I never thought I could have thanks to this great mentor who has so much on her plate and yet still makes time for everything and everyone,” Ms Tzanopoulos said, adding that the nomination was just a ‘thank you’ to her for her help in everything from assisting her staff make the best career choices to allowing them to bring kids to work. “It’s such a great workplace, and a joy to be there. She has made it especially warm and welcoming for mothers.”
Ms Likopoulos understands the challenges mothers face but also the creativity they bring to the workforce because she is one herself.
“Despite the challenges of being a young mother of four, I successfully lead and dominate in a male-orientated industry that is known to be competitive and cutthroat. I command respect but lead with gentle and fair qualities that allow for long-standing loyalty. I want my daughter to grow up in a world where her gender does not mean she has to work harder to earn respect as I did,” Ms Likopoulos said when she was nominated for the national award.
Nonetheless, being a successful businesswoman and nurturing mum can be challenging at times. Ms Likopoulos has advice for those starting their own enterprise.
“Don’t take on too many things at once,” she said. “So six things 1000 times, not 1000 things six times. Consistency and determination are the keys to success. Running a business is a slow burn and immediate satisfaction or results are not something you should be chasing.”
She got much of her work ethic from her migrant family. Her father came to Australia without any support or ability to speak English. Like many migrants, he worked in factories and small business. He saw a gap in the market for reliable business brokers who could provide support and decided to focus his passion into filling that gap. Absolute Business Brokers is a legacy of her father’s passion.
Ms Likopoulos inherited her dad’s love of the business and has been able to see it flourish on an international platform.
In the process she has offered quality support to mum’s who run a small business via her podcast and non-profit support group, designed to provide a safe space for these women to grow in their business.
The AusMumpreneur Awards are presented by The Women’s Business School and were created to inspire, celebrate and provide a community for Australian entrepreneurs, like Ms Likopoulos. Now more than ever Australian women need inspirational role models and a safe and supportive space to connect online, Peace Mitchell, cofounder of The Women’s Business School said.
“These awards are all about recognising the growing number of mums who are achieving outstanding business success while balancing motherhood,” Mitchell said, adding that she was “blown away by the courage, resilience and entrepreneurial spirit of the award winners”
Nominees for the Award
(1) Angela Skrinos, Candy Stripes Australia
(2) Tui Cordemans, Koh Living
(3) Mel Williams, DTM Construction Services Pty Ltd and EazBuild Pty Ltd
(4) Sandra Greenberger, Leskes Jewellers
(5) Elle Likopoulos, Absolute Business Brokers
(6) Carla Schwef, Designer Bums
(7) Simone Schenkel, Gruen Eco Design
(8) Emily Murray, Sourcey Marketing (aka. SOURCEY.M)
(9) Kelly Dennis, The Fit Station Caroline Springs