10 MANAGEMENT TIPS FOR WORK-AT-HOME MOMS
Being a parent is a full-time job in itself already. With a certain amount of drive, discipline and determination, you can make it work – as long as you make it a priority. These practical tips will help work-at-home moms (WAHMs) become effective, by iden
We show you how to effectively manage your home and career
Time always seems to be at a premium, especially if you’re a work-at-home mom. While it’s the perfect mantra of work-life balance for mothers wanting to ‘stay in the game’ while raising children, there’s surely an element of forward planning, time management and good organisation skills involved. Here are some ways in which you can have the best of both worlds:
1 WE LIVE IN A CONNECTED AGE.
With access to a good internet connection, you can easily work from home or anywhere you’d prefer. A lot of companies offer remote positions, projects or assignments to moms looking to balance their work and family life. Keep your mind open. Research has shown that doing what one loves makes a person most productive. This might be a good time to experiment and explore your hidden talents and skills. Scour all the resources there are, apply and land up with something that you’re willing to give your time for. For all you know, you might even stumble upon something that you might want to turn into a business of your own!
2 THERE ARE PLENTY OF WAYS FOR YOU TO TAKE OUT TIME FOR WORK.
Whether it’s in between feeds or while your child sleeps, you can find the time to be productive. Even though these may be short bursts, they can be quite rewarding, if you can focus and channelise your attention and energy well. If you live with family or in-laws, get them to babysit every once in a while. They’ll be happy with the quality time, but more importantly, you’ll get that muchneeded freedom to get some work done. Sleep training is another huge boon. If you can manage to put your baby to sleep by about 7 pm, you have a few hours in the evening to work.
FIGURE OUT THE TIME OF DAY WHEN YOUR MIND IS MOST FRESH.
When working on your own, you’ll need to discard the conventional nine-to-five model. In order to better utilise the hours of your day, focus on working when it suits you.
4 COMPLETING THE MOST IMPORTANT OR DIFFICULT TASKS OF THE DAY FIRST THING IN THE MORNING.
This usually works well because this is
when your energy and concentration is possibly at the highest. However, while some WAHMs find mornings most conducive, late evenings or nights work best for others when their little one is asleep. Either way, be flexible about making use of a time window whenever you get it. But remember, recognise your point of diminishing returns. When you’re at a point of severe exhaustion that it takes you longer than usual to do even the simplest of tasks, it’s time to call it a day!
KNOWING WHAT YOUR WEEK LOOKS LIKE IN ADVANCE MAKES IT EASIER TO SET THE RIGHT MINDSET.
Organise your week into specific days for similar tasks with an allotted time frame. You could group similar tasks together to further systematise your work. Focus carefully on one task at a time, and get it done before moving onto the next.
6 MAKE A TO-DO LIST OF ACTIVITIES AND STICK TO IT.
Setting weekly goals and prioritising tasks based on their importance, will help you focus on the most crucial tasks at hand. You could postpone the minor tasks for when you don’t really have to focus. In order to make sure that all your deliverables are in place, stick to deadlines and turn in the work by the desired time. However, set realistic goals for how much work you can get done. Don’t set unrealistic expectations or burden yourself with work that you may not be able to handle, given the fact that your prime responsibility is taking care of your child.
7 KEEP AWAY FROM DISTRACTIONS.
Whether it’s your phone, television and household chores, when you’re sitting down to work, leave them for their allotted time.
Moreover, constantly checking emails is another waste of time. Respond to incoming messages in batches and don’t check them more than three or four times a day.
8 SQUEEZE OUT TIME FOR NETWORKING EVENTS IN YOUR CITY.
Step out for quick meetings once in a while, leaving your baby behind with a trusted caregiver and some expressed milk or pre-prepared food. Carry your business cards along and always follow up meetings with an email or text, just as a reminder to the person you met. This way, you’ll build contacts and increase your chances of getting more work. 9 NETWORK ONLINE. Keep your profile and resume updated on sites like LinkedIn, Naukri, Monster, FlexingIt, etc. Don’t forget that a lot of company make hires or assign freelance projects on a referential basis, so keep your eyes and ears open or ask friends and former co-workers to put in a good word for you. Social media also helps in this regard. 10 TAKE GOOD CARE OF YOURSELF. The final step in effectively managing your work-at-home life is by eating well and getting plenty of rest. You’ll only be a productive WAHM if you aren’t tired, hungry or irritable. Don’t push yourself too hard or neglect your baby at the cost of your work. Remember, nothing is more precious than the well-being of you and your baby.