Today is the last day of school for my kids. Last night my oldest had his graduation from Grade 8. The entire class looked spectacular and it was a lovely event.
If you have kids, the summer can be a challenging time to run your business, especially if you are working from home. Here are a few tips that will help you during the summer and throughout the year if you kids are really small.
Set Your Boundaries
You need a workspace that is your “work place”, whether it is out of the home or in your dining room. This space should be clearly defined as your workspace and your kids should know this. When you are working they need to know about this space and what rights they have in it. Can they just walk in and start talking, can they phone you anytime they need help finding something, can they work on the computer while you are on the phone with a client, is there a time of day when you are absolutely not to be disturbed…? Set your boundaries and make them constituent so you and your kids know when you are available and when you are not.
- Why Does Being a Parent Give You an Advantage in Business?
- Working from Home with Kids Around Equals More Support
Leave the House
Even if your office is in your home set a time of day that you can work uninterrupted in a space that is not available to your kids. There are lots of options: a cafe, the library, a park, or possibly rent a space, part-time for a couple of months. There are office-hotelling options in most cities, but if not, put the word out to your local network and possibly someone with space will allow you to share their space for a few hours a week over the summer.
I have told the story many time that when I started my first business my mother was so excited for me because I would now not need daycare. She was wrong. I could not run a fulltime business and give my kids the attention they needed. If you currently do not have daycare for small kids, consider putting them in a program that allows you to take them a few days a week for 1/2 days.
Other options for older kids are day camps and summer camps. There is also the option to send them to family for a few hours or an overnight stay. It is important that you have time to focus on your work and it is important that when you are focusing on your kids you actually have time to be with them, so make arrangements for both.