Work at home Moms have the challenge of balancing both work and home responsibilities.  Until you experience the pull from every direction that you feel while combining your home and office, working from home sounds like an ideal situation.  And it is – if you can find the right balance that works for you and your family.

Learn how our expert guest blogger learned to prioritize her schedule and what she does to make sure the needs of both work and family are being met.

Keep an Up-to-Date Diary and Prioritize

I am an independent distributor for a beautiful range of greeting cards and stationery called Phoenix Trading. I sell via the traditional ‘in-home party’, at markets, through the catalogue and via my own company website. I can put the business aside when I want to go on holidays and work it as much as I like when I do not have other commitments.

Getting the balance of work and family has been challenging, especially as my busiest time of year (December) is also the month that all three of my children celebrate their birthdays! Juggling sales, family commitments and my husband’s busy schedule means that I need to plan ahead and share a diary with my husband. Our rule is whoever gets it in the diary first wins! So if he has booked in a poker night with the boys, then I have to work around that.

We diarise with Outlook and I can access it through my phone when I’m out of the house to make sure that when I say ‘yes’ to an appointment, I mean it. I want to be reliable and professional. I never have to get back to someone; I can make a firm commitment immediately (and log it in so I’ve got dibs on that date!)

It has been important to recognise my priorities. Sometimes that means asking to reschedule or even turning down a sale if it isn’t going to fit in. When I first started I found this very difficult. I was so keen to succeed that I lost sight of the reason I was doing a work from home job – so I can be around for my family. I even accepted a booking on my husband’s birthday! He wasn’t pleased and even if the sales had been fabulous (which they weren’t!), I felt too guilty to enjoy it. I’m now careful to schedule my work time around my family, not the other way round.

Kirstin Crothers, Executive Trader, Phoenix Trading

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