Part 1 was all about the new challenges of working from home. Join us now for part 2! The challenges continue – the art of working from home with kids. Our next topics in the series are:
- Maintaining Self-Development While Working from Home
- How to Support Your Remote Team
We want to assist you in developing strategies to successfully accomplish and work through some new challenges that you may be facing during this global crisis.
Many of the tips that we shared last month apply even more so to working from home with children. For example, creating a schedule will give your days structure – something that children thrive upon. Having a separate space for work will ensure that you can keep your “parent” and “employee” hats separate. Trying to concentrate on separate roles at once means you won’t be able to do either well.
Set up a reasonable schedule so that you can set aside the appropriate time for your kids.
If you’re the only parent, then let the kids know you’re working from 9am to noon and need some quiet time. Work shorter shifts if necessary but let them know your work hours, and when you’ll be taking a break or lunch and can spend some time with them. Allow for them to distract you; they will, of course. So be extra patient when necessary.
If there are two parents in the home, try splitting the day so you each work half, and each take care of the kids while the other is working. Perhaps one parent could work 6am to 12pm and then the other work 12pm to 6pm. It may be necessary to invest in some noise-cancelling headphones.
What about work meetings or calls when you’re looking after the kids? Even if two parents can split the days, can you arrange meetings around naps or get your partner to cover? Perhaps you could have tablets or special “alone-time toys” that the kids can use only when you have important meetings you absolutely must attend and when no other childcare provider is available.
Plan for things to go wrong. You can apply all of the above and things can still not go to plan. That is just the reality of parenting. However, there are ways to mitigate the interruptions. While you’re on a conference call, unless you are presenting, keep your microphone on mute. This will prevent your clients from hearing a wrongly-timed, “MOMMMMMY” in the middle of your teleconference. Older children will be able to understand certain visual cues, such as a sign on your office door that says, “Do Not Disturb”.
Be Flexible. If your employer will allow you to have a more flexible schedule, try working with your child, instead of against the grain. For example, use your younger child’s nap time to get work done. If your children are fussing and your employer is agreeable to a more flexible schedule, go play outside with the kids and complete your work later in the day.
Parents who have worked from home have learned to work around the unique challenges. The above tips will help you cope, keep calm and remain patient with your children while continuing to be productive at work.
Don’t forget to join us for parts 3 & 4 in this series dedicated to the new challenges of working from home during this global crisis. Next week, we’ll concentrate on “Maintaining Self-Development While Working from Home” and “How to Support Your Remote Team”.
We hope you found these tips helpful. If you need any more tips to work more efficiently at home, please subscribe to our YouTube Channel and follow us on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and/or Twitter to see what training and free tools we offer and for regular updates and announcements. We have been training people across the country virtually for years and we are fully equipped to assist you as well!
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