That’s the alarm, isn’t it? But wasn’t it just five minutes ago when I put my head on the pillow? It’s still pitch dark … what is happening? Oh yes, it’s time to get ready for work. I get out of bed as quietly as possible, as not to wake the newborn, and tip-toe to the bathroom. As soon as I turn the water on to brush my teeth, I hear her: “Daddy, Daddy!” My 2-year-old daughter is screaming her ‘good morning.’ I shift gears from getting myself ready for work to getting my daughter ready for day care. A mere two hours later, my wife and I are dressed and we’ve somehow managed, between wrestling matches and snuggles, to feed and clothe both children. We can actually leave the house! Even though I was up two hours before I had to be at work, which is only 15 minutes away, I show up five minutes late and already a little exhausted.
Sound familiar? If you’re a parent of little ones, getting out of the house in the morning presents some challenges. Balancing personal and work life can be difficult, especially for those in a similar season of life. As dedicated as we are to our jobs and responsibilities, the demands of a young family can throw a morning routine – and any semblance of work-life balance — out of whack. But, take heart, we’ve discovered a few tips for surviving the morning madness:
- Accept that not everything will get done each morning. Beds won’t get made. Dishes will get left in the sink. It’s ok.
- Divide and conquer. Identify specific things that you will handle and things that your partner will own. For example, I will help my daughter get dressed, eat breakfast and brush her teeth while my wife feeds our newborn son, changes his diaper and gets him into the car seat.
- Get as much done the night before (clothes laid out, breakfast staged, snacks packed), so you don’t have to run around as much in the morning.
- Be prepared for the unexpected and accept that sometimes you will be late to work.
So that covers getting out the door. But what about that work-life balance for which we all strive? Some companies don’t take tardiness lightly, and frequent instances could have ramifications therefore it is important to find an employer that understands work life balance. For example, at TNSC, for example, our management believes that having a full and enriching personal life is vital – because, ultimately, it makes for a happier and more productive worker. Like other good employers TNSC routinely provides flexibility when personal life intrudes on work responsibilities. As managers, we try to accommodate for the employee, wherever possible – as long as we can ensure that job responsibilities are covered and that our customers are still being effectively served.
In fact, TNSC is so committed to helping our employees achieve that balance that, as a policy, everyone at TNSC has unlimited personal and sick time. This sort of flexibility, however, won’t succeed if there weren’t, first and foremost, a solid foundation of trust among the team. We believe – and operate on the premise – that everyone here always has the best interest of the company in mind. So, at the end of the day (or at the beginning of it!), I know my coworkers will have my back if I’m a few minutes late because my kids were acting like, well, kids!