10 Essential Tips for Work from Home Parents
For parents, working from home and taking care of their family feels like a daily juggling act where you can’t afford to drop the ball. The pressure to accomplish your work compounded with managing your duties at home can test the limits of your patience and affect your overall wellbeing. Here are some helpful tips from The Talent Consultants, a staffing specialist in Vietnam, that you might find useful if you’re struggling with your parental responsibilities and your work-from-home tasks at the same time.
1. Plan the night before
Spend around 10 minutes to plan out your home and work activities for the next day. Inform your family about the schedule you’ve set and discuss if any adjustments should be made.
2. Set up your workspace
Set aside a dedicated area in your home to work, preferably a place where you’ll encounter less distractions. Move around objects in your home if you need to create the workspace that works for you. Make sure you have the necessary IT infrastructure to accomplish your work: software, hardware, and a strong internet connection.
3. Plan and follow a routine
With everything that’s going on, practising a daily routine will help you and your family feel a sense of reassurance and security. Plan two routines: one for yourself and another for your kids. Plot them in such a way that you and your family will have enough time to connect with each other, like during mealtimes or after your working hours. You’ll also feel a sense of accomplishment when you stick to a routine and complete your tasks on time.
4. Be flexible to change
Being flexible means making adjustments to your old routine so you can improve your time management for work at home. You can wake up earlier to get more work done without interruption or prepare meals and activities for your kids the night before.
There is also a tendency to work longer hours at home and being flexible doesn’t mean that you should always extend your time for work. Don’t stretch yourself too thin by overscheduling in a day.
5. Deal with distractions
Unexpected events may disrupt your routine and it’s best to accept that some things are simply beyond your control. If you’re in a meeting and your children are being disruptive, send a nonverbal message or a sign to let them know. If you must, excuse yourself from the meeting, press mute, then attend to your kids’ needs. Inform your colleagues if you have to reschedule the meeting and commit to catching up as soon as you’re able.
6. Take a break from work and parental duties
For parents working at home, taking a break might seem like an impossibility. But without it, you’ll eventually feel burned out and unproductive. The quality of your work could suffer, and you might just snap at your family out of frustration. Take a few minutes off by yourself and don’t feel guilty about prioritising your wellbeing in these moments.
7. Get more work done during kids’ nap time
Take advantage of your kids’ morning or afternoon naps by doing more work during that time. Use a baby monitor while they’re sleeping so there’s no need for you to check on them every so often.
8. Communicate and set healthy boundaries
Talk to your kids and help them understand why it’s important for you to work without distractions as much as possible. You can promise to give them your full attention in the afternoon if they let you work uninterrupted in the morning.
Let them know that when your door is closed, it means you’re working and that you shouldn’t be disturbed. Or prepare a play pen where they can do their activities while you’re working. In time, they’ll understand and respect the significance of these boundaries.
9. Connect with co-workers and other parents
The struggle to work from home can be overwhelming. Reach out to your colleagues who might be going through the same thing or other parents who are also working from home. Sharing the burden and helping each other out will make you feel less isolated.
10. Be realistic
Given these circumstances, you can only do so much to maintain a harmonious balance between working from home and your parental responsibilities. Set realistic expectations for yourself. There will be times when you need to prioritise work over family time and vice-versa. Don’t feel as if you’re a bad parent when you choose to work first. Manage the time that you have as best as you can.
C-suite recruitment in Vietnam
The Talent Consultants is a top recruitment agency in Ho Chi Minh City that provides the most qualified candidates for a variety of roles in different local and international businesses. We recognise the struggles of parents working from home, especially those with demanding jobs at the c-suite level. We offer valuable resources to help you maintain your wellbeing in these challenging times. For more work-from-home management tips, read about ensuring employee engagement here. Contact us on +84 28 7309 7991 or book a call here for your talent acquisition needs.