Dream Childcare - Tanya Burrage
Tanya Burrage is the Founder and Director of Dream Childcare (Dream Au Pair, Dream Educator, Dream Nanny - formerly KiwiOz Nannies). She started Dream Childcare in March 2005 from her kitchen bench with a laptop, a mobile phone and three kids under the age of four. Her daughter Isabel has just turned 17 and her twin boys, Jack and Fred are 14.
1. Why did you set up your business?
I wanted the affordability and flexibility of an Au Pair for my own family but discovered that there was no Au Pair agency in New Zealand. I googled some agencies in Germany, contacted them and asked them to send me some Au Pairs. I then called all my friends and said ”who wants an Au Pair?”
2. As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I’ve always been an entrepreneur and started with selling anything and everything. Second hand books for sale at the top of our drive, lemonade stands and even setting up a clothes stall at the Panmure markets on Sunday’s.
3. Do you ever feel "mummy guilt" about spending time working instead of with your children?
When my children were very young, I became a single mother and at that time I made a conscious choice that they would always be my number one priority. Easy to say but not as easy to put into practice.
Fortunately, I have hosted numerous Au Pairs over the years which gave me the flexibility to be there when the kids needed me. For this reason Dream Au Pair grew slowly and organically. To this day the business is built on long standing loyal clients and an amazing team.
4. What do you do to get "me-time"?
Rosie (my dog ) and I walk along Kohi beach every morning, rain or shine. The ocean is my happy place where I do all my thinking – it’s good for my soul.
5. What is the smartest thing you have done with your business?
Creating a clear vision for the company “Making Family Life Easier” and surrounding myself with loyal, committed and smart people.
6. What is your favourite thing about the business now? What do you most enjoy?
My nickname in the business is “Shiny New Things”. I love the excitement of bringing something new to the New Zealand market which will genuinely “Make Family Life Easier” for Kiwi families.
Shona Joe joined our team earlier this year as General Manager of Dream Childcare so that I can focus on launching and growing Dream Eldercare and Dream Maids. Watch this space 😊
7. What is the most surprising thing you’ve found in running your own business?
About a year ago I was chatting to my kids and asked them if they would have preferred it if I had been a stay at home mum rather than working.
Their response was a resounding “No” which really surprised me. They explained how proud they were of what I had built up and that they all wanted to be like me when they grew up and own their own companies. It was a very proud moment.
8. What is your philosophy to child-rearing?
I believe that children need to learn to take risks and make choices so that they understand that all actions have consequences. My kids have all climbed the tallest trees 😊
Every day experiences are learning opportunities and the most important things our children can learn are resilience, sharing, empathy and kindness.