Working & Parenting from Home in Crisis Mode

Many leaders are learning for the first time how to work from home. They may also be learning how to navigate with other family members who are also working at home. Additionally, working families with children have been asked to home school their children, which, in itself, presents lots of new challenges.

Let us face the fact that it is a very challenging time for leaders on so many fronts. Leaders must realize some sense of organization and stabilization in their work area, so they are able to deal effectively with all the other priorities facing them – first things first.

I have developed a virtual training module on working and parenting at home and here are the top tips for success:

1. Set some ground rules. Call a family meeting. Recognize this is new for everyone. Share how you are all feeling, what you are worried about, and share what basic needs each of you require. Do everything you can as a family to meet everyone’s basic needs during this time. Remind everyone that this is a good time for extra patience and understanding. Establish a time to meet regularly to review your progress together.

2. Share the household duties. Now is not the time for only one person to do the work since there is more to do. Divide up the responsibilities. Make it fun when you can!

3. Set up a private work area. Look for an area separate from the busy zone in your home – if possible, someplace that has a door like a bedroom or spare bedroom.

4. Develop a schedule for the family. Involve children in the setting up of their own schedule where possible. Work to ensure each working family member’s work priorities are respected. Review the schedule daily and be prepared for changes.

PREMIUM CONTENT: US Staffing Industry Forecast: April 2020 Update

5. Schedule uninterrupted time for work. Schedule your work time in two-hour blocks if possible. If that seems impossible, start at one hour and work up to two.

6. Put up a quiet zone sign. When members of the family are working, a simple sign will help remind everyone to be quiet in this area.

7. Plan for two hours of structured learning for children daily. Ensure each daily home school schedule has time allotted for lessons, play time, outdoor exercise, creativity, fun and quiet time too. Share your ideas with your friends and neighbors and ask for suggestions or assistance. Lean on online help as well.

8. Ask for help when you need it. Don’t go it alone. Reach out to your work colleagues, friends and loved ones during this time. Stay connected.

A few other things to remember:

  • This is new, so accept mistakes will be made.
  • Forgive and move on as soon as possible.
  • Do your best to clear up any family conflict as quickly as possible.
  • Laugh often. Listen to your favorite music. Schedule time for some exercise.
  • Do some silly things to break up the routine.

Appreciate this unique family opportunity and be grateful for what you have. Many families are dealing with illness and financial upset as well as the disruption from working from home. Putting your situation in perspective will help you make it through and allow you to be as productive as you can be.

MORE: The human side of Covid-19: Remove your mask

Sandra Hokansson

Sandra Hokansson
Sandi Hokansson is a certified executive-level coach and principal of SoundLeadership. Reach her at sandi (at) soundleadership (dot) ca.

Sandra Hokansson

Share This Post


Recent Articles

Powered by ·