5 Tips for Working from Home When School’s Out

If you, like me, work out of your home, you might find it more of a challenge when the kids are home for the summer. Fortunately for me, my 9-year-old is in year ’round school and only gets 5 weeks off in July!

If you don’t want your productivity drained, make an effort to follow these tips to keep your business priority this summer.

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1. Establish the Rules. Kids are notorious for not liking rules, but they need them just the same. Let them know that they need to treat your home office just like a “real” office and not disturb you during work hours.

2. Make Some Exceptions. Any kid will tell you: rules are made to be broken. If you normally work 8-4, consider only working in the mornings, then taking the afternoon off to spend with the kids. You can always make up your work after they’ve gone to bed.

3. Make a Separation of Work and Play. When you run your own business, it’s easy to be “on” all the time. After all, you’re just a swipe of your phone screen away from those work emails. But if you’ve committed to spending times with the family, don’t give into temptation and get a little work done. Your family will resent you, and you probably won’t do a good job on the work if you’re distracted.

4. Consider Reduced Hours. Take a note from larger companies like Kimberly-Clark, who offer their employees reduced summer hours (some get every other Friday off). If your workload permits, consider cutting back so you can spend time with the family.

5. Consider Hiring Help. If your workload does not allow you to work less in the summer, hire help. That could be an intern, a freelancer, or a part-timer to get you through the summer months. This is a great jumping-off point to starting to build your staff! I’m willing to bet you won’t want to let them go once the kids go back to school.

Bonus Tip: Enroll the Kids in Camp. There’s no law that says your children have to lounge on the couch all summer, or that you have to shuttle them from one intellectually-stimulating activity to another. Find local camps that will provide enrichment for them and a well-deserved break for you.

If you’re a parent and an entrepreneur, you often feel torn between your two loves, especially when the kids are home full time. But with a little planning, you can stay productive this summer and keep your family in harmony.

Image: Photospin

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