How To Manage Working From Home With Kids

Related video: Work-From-Home Productivity TipsIn this video, we explain how to “hack” the home office and maximize efficiency.As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, some workers are continuing to work from home. While most schools have opened again to in-person classes, schools must contend with new coronavirus waves and often send children home for extended periods of time if they get sick. As a result, many parents are finding themselves at home with kids trying to juggle childcare and productivity.

Balancing work and kids at home

During times like these, it is important to prioritize the health of you and your family. Keeping an open and honest line of communication with your employer can help do so by setting expectations, communicating well and staying aligned.

Here are some additional ways you can balance work and family care while working from home with kids:

1. Over-communicate and set expectations

Work with your manager to set and reset expectations throughout your work from home period as it pertains to your goals and commitments. Many employers are understanding of the difficulty of the situation and may be supportive of your need to adjust your schedule or goals as a result.

If you don’t have one already, you might consider asking your manager and stakeholders for a weekly or biweekly check-in via video chat or phone call. Keeping consistent communication ensures your manager understands the progress you’re making, changes you require and support you may need. Communication is especially important in ensuring a common understanding of the limitations of work from home in addition to being a caregiver.

You may also set expectations during meetings. For example, you might explain upfront that you may need to step away for a few minutes to handle situations that come up, or that a child may walk in and you will step away quietly and return quickly.

2. Practice time management and set a schedule

Block off time as needed for caregiving activities, knowing that not all planned time works out with the unpredictability of little ones. It is completely valid to preserve times throughout the day when you need to be a caregiver. If the option is available, look for opportunities to split time with another caregiver and build your schedule around this.

Communicate to your team and manager which times during the day are unavailable to you. Try to optimize where possible for team syncs and important engagements.

It can help both you and your kids to come up with a basic (and flexible) schedule, perhaps one that mimics a regular school day to maintain consistency. Their schools may even provide an online curriculum.

For example:

If available to you, consider taking time off — especially when you need a break.

3. Set boundaries with both work and your kids

Establishing clear boundaries and rules for you, your kids and your coworkers will help everyone understand each other better.

4. Take advantage of free resources

In light of the transition, many organizations are offering free resources including online classes, arts and crafts and physical exercises. Here are a few:

5. Take breaks

You can also consider taking some time to call or chat with someone who is dealing with something similar. Doing so is a great way to decompress and stay connected.

While this time can certainly feel stressful and confusing, know that you are not alone. Communicate and set expectations with your employers and colleagues, reach out (virtually) to a friend when you need to decompress, take breaks and set boundaries. Taking small steps like these can help make your time working from home with kids easier.

Related Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *