Friday, February 14, 2020

Time Management: Balancing parenting and work

I’ve been listening to a new podcast called Business Dad, which got me hooked with this description:
How do you balance it all?

Working moms are asked this question incessantly, but it’s rarely asked of working dads. After Alexis Ohanian’s daughter Olympia was born, it took months before he was asked about work-life balance and the inevitable trade-offs of being a working parent.

In a new podcast from Initialized Capital, Alexis Ohanian ... opens this question up to some of the most successful men across business, sports, entertainment, and more, for candid conversations about what it means to be a father in today’s world and how they balance their careers and family.
Comedian Hasan Minhaj is the guest on the first episode; his daughter is 20 months old. He said that it wasn't until a few months in that he “really realized the relentless nature of parenting; it doesn’t stop.”

He also noted that he has dedicated time with his daughter every day:
My wife forced my hand ... Beena is the one who told me, “You have to set time with her, every day, to: 
A — develop that bond and
B — if you don't you're going to regret it.”

So from 6:30 to 8:30 every day it's our time, before I come to the office.

I remember having that initial pushback like “Come on, are you serious, every day?” And now it’s one of the best things that ever happened to me.
The editor in chief of Wired, Nicholas Thompson, is the guest on the second episode, which I enjoyed even more than the first one. Nick has three sons, ages 5, 9 and 11. Given his children’s ages, his interactions with his sons are quite different than those that Alexis and Hasan have with their young daughters. But he also has dedicated time with them:
I try to keep a very structured schedule where I take them to school, I go to work, then I leave work almost every day at 6 to go home, and put them to bed, and tell them stories, and play with them, and work with them on their things and then they go to sleep and I got back to work ... I go back to my computer.
He goes on to talk about the trade-offs — the things you don’t have time for when you’re spending time on work and family. I also loved his stories about engaging his boys in his work; for example, they helped craft his first interview question to Secretary of State John Kerry. And when Nick was choosing between two job offers, his top decision-making question was this: Which job will make you a better dad for your children?

Tired of only women being asked how they balance work and family? If so, you might enjoy this podcast, too.