Taking Care Of Business (And Kids!)
Okay so there’s no getting a way from the fact that many business women are still the key people when it comes to the child care, so when the half term comes around how do you ensure your business is thriving and your children aren’t ready to throttle each other and you?
How do you make sure that the week after half term is not lost to playing catch up and working 18 hour days?
Here’s my 7 top tips to half term happiness and blossoming business;
Plan ahead – you know when the holidays will be so plan ahead, get your marketing automated so you can be climbing a castle or watching the latest Disney film and still have leads heading your way. Wrote a great blog? Make that part of your social media/email campaign for the coming week. Get savvy on your marketing strategy, your inbox, your use of technology – this could make time management not just good for school holidays but for better business too!
Work smart – is it really realistic to carry on working with a child trying to play under your feet or crayon the cats nose? Work smart. Every child has down time, make that your powered up time. Remember the saying that a child’s attention span lasts 1 minute per year of their lives. Don’t expect junior to sit happily for 2 hours with a pot of glue and glitter and not start redesigning your office! It comes back to planning, but plan what they are going to do when you are busy.
Decide what’s got to give – its a fact that as multi – tasking a genius as you are, something has got to give. What could you realistically cut back on? I often find when working with new clients, when we actually sit down and work out where they spend their time, if they thought through what works and what was just a colossal waste of time, they find there are ways to work smarter and more efficiently. So work smart and ask yourself what can I accept can wait until next week. Other wise you are deciding to do the same task and probably take double or treble the time to get it done!
Get them involved – a sad fact is that many students leaving university will struggle to get a job. How powerful a message are you sending to your children that you don’t need to find a job, but that you can create a career. Okay you can’t sit and explain that one to a 2 year old but a 10 year old that begins to understand that Mum is doing this because it pays for the fun in life, is more likely to let you get on. If a child can appreciate that food in their belly and a trip to the cinema is paid for by Mum’s hard work – it could be the key to some peace and quiet and some business happening. It’s not bribery, its showing them what is achievable in life. Sowing the seed that options are wider than University and someone else’s vision of a business.
Be Realistic – Don’t pick up the phone just as their favourite cartoon finishes, what’s the likely hood you can look professional with a child screaming in the background for more Bob The Builder? Timing is everything in the school holidays. Time what you are going to do when, be flexible and have a back up plan and if all else fails….
Resort to bribery!
It’s not your first line of defence, but knowing everything that you can have in your arsenal to ensure your business is looked after as much as your little ones is key. Knowing what their favourite toy, food, song, game, activity, or destination is could be the difference between you looking after your customers and losing out on business.
Lead the way – Most of you are not brain surgeons or fire man dealing with life and death situations. Your customers come to you because you treat them as if it is a matter of life and death but you are allowed to sleep, eat and have a life. You only have to look at companies like Google’s work ethic to know that its positively encouraged to go off and do something useful instead because the incredibly positive impact it can have on business. Don’t see your kids as a distraction to business success, see them as an opportunity to think smart, plan and create the space to think through those big ideas and creative projects that you never seem to have time for. Playing with children allows your sub conscious brain to think those ideas through. You will be surprised how powerful that can be for your success and how good it can be for your sanity in the next school holiday!