We know going back to work after having a baby can be a really tough time but you can make it work for you. Cat Sims brings you a list of totally transferable skills that will make you feel like home can benefit from your working self and vice versa.
- Learn to say no
At work we know exactly what our responsibilities are. We know what our job description requires us to do and we can recognize it when people start to take advantage. We don’t stand for it. Take this skill home with you – that mum that always asks you to pick up the kids and give them tea and then rarely returns the favour? Yeah…practice saying no to her.
- Show them who’s boss
At work the hierarchy is generally pretty clear. You know who your boss is and you know who you’re the boss of. At home those lines can be less clear. They may only be two-feet tall and unable to tell their elbow from the earhole but they’re pretty effective when it comes to getting their way and sometimes you’re not even sure how it happened. Bring your bad-ass boss self home with you and show them who’s boss.
- Casual Friday
Even the corporate world understands that the occasional slackening of the rules is good for morale. The same works at home too. Implement a casual Friday (any day of the week will do!) and relax the rules. Say ‘yes’ to TV dinner, to staying in jammies all day, to watching a movie or two, to popcorn for breakfast. It’s wicked good fun and will mean a LOT less fighting.
It works the other way too. After a year or more of being at home, you’ve gained a whole new skillset that will help you thrive at the office.
What many of us forget is that putting the kids in Timeout is as much for parents as it is for kids. The principle works in the office too. Feel the need to send an angry email ripping your colleague apart for being late for another meeting? Put yourself in timeout – metaphorically of course (it’s a bit weird if you sit yourself on the naughty step at work) – and then write the email.
- Date night
Ok, we’re not suggesting you date your colleagues but the principle behind date night is a sound one. When you’re under pressure and working like maniacs it’s easy to forget that you’re all human. Organise drinks for your team. Blow off some steam. Don’t talk about work.
- No smack rule
Generally a good one to abide by at work as well. Smacking colleagues is generally frowned upon and requires you to come up with savvy negotiating techniques that can make everyone feel like they’ve got their own way. As a mother this is probably your most valuable skill and one that people who aren’t parents will never perfect in the same way.