As more people have the opportunity to work from home, many parents are restructuring how they work to achieve a better balance between the needs of their job and family.
To enhance the employee experience and retain skilled workers, companies have recognised the need to offer more personalised workplace structures that may include a combination of part-time and remote-based roles.
Glenn Badke, finance manager, The Recognition Group is among a rapidly growing number of fathers who are working part-time from home so they can help support their partners with raising children. In this article, Glenn shares his experience of being part of the next generation of working parents.
Number of kids: 3
Age of kids: 3, 12 and 14.
What’s important to you in a role? Autonomy and accountability. Being in control and owning your work and outcomes.
Can you describe what’s involved in doing your job on a day-to-day basis? Generally providing support for the team including financial results and analysis so that strategic decisions can be made.
Did you have any personal concerns or worries in relation to family or out-of-work commitments when you started combining working and parenting? None. I made the decision to move to part time to be a more involved parent and had absolutely no hesitations. I can understand there is still out of work commitments that are missed, but part time is still a big improvement on full time so I feel I am ahead of the game there.
What kind of support do you have? My wife understands that my decision is unique, so when I do choose to work longer, she is always happy to support. From a wider support point of view, we don’t have a great deal as neither set of grandparents live nearby. This makes the inevitable childcare sick days a challenge sometimes.
What are your work commitments? I work when I must to get the job done, but this usually falls between Tuesday to Friday 9-4.
What’s the biggest challenge you have faced finding a balance between work and parenting commitments? Occasionally working on a ‘family day’ for the benefit of the team and not the family.
Do you find time for yourself? And if so, how and what do you use it for? Absolutely. This is a must for me and I gym everyday and go for runs in the morning.
Do you have a daily routine, and if so, what does it look like? I am very routine driven.
3-4 mornings a week, I’ll run before the rest of the family are even up.
Usually check emails from the previous afternoon (I try not to check my emails to frequently as I get interrupted) while my son has breakfast and a little morning play/tv watch.
I then take him to daycare. Once I am back I settle in for the biggest work chunk of the day. This is when I am most productive. I can usually push out my lunch/gym break til early afternoon.
After my lunch/gym break, I work another smaller stint before picking up my son again.
How has COVID-19 impacted your work environment? Not really as I was working from home/a contractor in my previous role.
What are you reading right now and what do you recommend? I’m not much of a reader, and when I do, I hate to admit it, but its usually fiction and Dan Brown or young adult books, so no real recommendations here.
What advice do you have for others adjusting to this new style of working? It’s easy for me as I am an introvert, but for the extroverts that are not a fan of working from home and need more human contact, they need to change their mind set that working from home has more advantages than disadvantages. An example would be using the savings in travel time to get out and have longer lunches to exercise, which will in turn improve your overall lifestyle.
The freework culture at The Recognition Group lets team members, like Glenn, optimise their work/life balance through personalising the workplace model. This approach gives employees a happier, healthier work environment, which also delivers productivity benefits for the organisation. Learn more about the freework culture at The Recognition Group.