Being a good parent is a concern many adults have today. In the US economy, between 1960 to 2017, the percentage of families with only the father employed decreased from 70% to 30%.
In that same time span (1960-2017), the number of dual-income families rose from 25% to 65%. Families with only one working mother rose in the same time span from 2% to 6%.
With so many parents worried about proper parenting skills and holding down a career, we offer advice on being a good parent while becoming a greater professional.
Fun fact: Being a parent makes you better at your job
A 2015 survey by Business News Daily showed that 69% of parents believe managing children and a career makes them more successful in the workplace, plus sharpens their management skills.
Parents surveyed explained they became better at the following skills:
- Ability to multi-task
- Time management
- Conflict management
- Budgeting/managing finances
- Project management
Tip #1: Trade-off days working from home
With advancements in technology, the need to be at the office is declining. Using tools like Skype, email, and shared work servers allow for people to all work on the same projects. The location of the employee or manager does not matter.
The parents who trade days working from home are managing time, solving children’s problems, and becoming empathetic of the spouse who goes through the same routine.
Having a career working from home also saves money and leaves plenty of time for parents to be mentors for their children. Not only is this being a good parent, it will also teach the children how to be greater professionals in the future.
If your office needs, there will still be days when you go to work, preserving those relationships, as well.
Tip #2: Have one parent work from home full-time
Even though the workforce of working mothers from home has increased over the years, so has a number of working fathers from home. In the US, there is a freelance workforce of more than 50 million freelance workers.
In addition, one parent who works from home can teach proper parenting skills while the other parent works in an office.
The fact that jobs working from home are often deadline-driven, and performance is based on achieving goals, it allows parents to decide how they manage their own time. As long as they reach their goals and deadlines, there is no need to worry if they spent an extra hour picking up children from school.
Tip #3: Have both parents work from home
This is something I have seen entrepreneurs do, as well as parents who want to scale back their careers to spend more time with family:
- Example #1: A successful husband-wife team that started a successful business decides to make their home “the office”. Each of them trades off tasks when it comes to raising the children.
- Example #2: An investment firm VP and a stock trader get married. They have a child with Autism. Both parents see the demands ahead of them. The VP changes to an Analyst position and the stock trader moves to a home office. The conditions were that both take substantial pay cuts.
When I get to ask them both about how much they like it, even though they do not make as much as they once did, both couples reply:
- “It was the best decision we ever made...for us...and our kids.”
The key to being a good parent for them, and defining proper parenting skills, is knowing that they are giving of themselves so that the children they love can have better lives. And when it comes down to career choices, these two couples are greater professionals because they are skilled. And the companies they work for find them irreplaceable.
Additionally, the fact that they work from home means they can live anywhere in the United States and still make “big city money” even with the pay cut. Being a good parent, in their eyes, was the best career choice they made, so far.