The days of the 9-to-5 job being the norm are changing. With improvements in technology and a stronger focus on the work-life balance, we are now looking for ways to fit our careers around our lives instead of the other way around.
Tangible Words has found a way to make dispersed offices work with a team all over the world.
Table of Contents (6 minute read)
- How To Get Your Control Back as a Work From Home Parent
- How Flexible Work Can Provide True Freedom
- The Many Factors Changing the Future Of Work
How to Get Your Control Back as a Work From Home Parent
Parenting can be a never-ending juggling routine. We want to raise children who have the chance to experience a variety of activities (especially if we never got that chance when we were children). However, driving kids from one activity to another can start to feel like a full-time job in itself. It can be a challenge to keep up with these activities and have both parents working outside of the home. Over the last 40 years, the percentage of dual-income families went from 36% to 69%. So how do parents manage all of this: the full-time job, the activities and the homework? More than ever we are also hearing about the importance of a work-life balance.
A work-life balance means splitting your work time and your home time appropriately so that it feels manageable. One way to have a balanced work-life is to find a job that embraces the ability to work from home. With improvements of technology, it is now possible for companies to run dispersed offices globally. Tangible Words has perfected the dispersed workplace with its entire team spread all over the world. Being able to work when it is convenient and conducive to family life is key to a work-life balance. Here are some examples of parents on our team who are making work from home work for them:
Parents Love Life More: Canadian Entrepreneurs Who Work From Home
The CEO of Tangible Words started it with her partner before they had children. They both had the desire to be strong Canadian entrepreneurs and to carve out time to work on the things they enjoyed. After their boys were born they had the ability to spend those valuable fleeting moments with them, instead of sending them to a daycare facility.
The reason that Tangible Words has been so effective and seamless with their team is because they continue to bring people on board with these values and skills:
- Tech-savvy eagerness
- Time management
- A desire to learn
The Unexpected Gift That Comes From Being a Work From Home Mom
The current project manager for Tangible Words spent her maternity leave after her daughter was born dreading the one-year mark when she was to go back to her full-time job. It was a job that was out of her home and one she felt she was overeducated for. After applying to a job ad that her mom sent her, she was hired as a copywriter for Tangible Words. Not only did the flexible schedule and dispersed workplace fit nicely with being a work from home mom, but she was finally doing work that she loved.
Now as a project manager she is responsible for managing growth-driven content creation for all of Tangible Words’ inbound marketing clients. Ceilidhe is able to work around when her daughter is in school, but it also gives her the opportunity to pursue her other passions.
How Work From Home Jobs Can Be Powerful and Life-changing
One of the writers for Tangible Words always dreamed of being a teacher. However, after the birth of her two boys, she realized that there were only so many precious hours in a day. Coming home exhausted with nothing left in her own tank inspired her to find a new path. As a current writer and editor for Tangible Words she celebrates and promotes work from home jobs for the following reasons:
- Flexibility: Not only does working from home provide the opportunity to be flexible with your schedule, it also allows workers to live and operate from wherever works best for them.
- Less Stress: Working full-time outside of the home while trying to raise kids is a challenge. Being able to slow down and be more purposeful decreases stress and allows for the opportunity to actually enjoy the parenting journey.
- More Time With Family: Parents are all too aware of how quickly time goes. One second you are holding your baby in your arms, and the next second they are giving an eye roll and doing a hair flip. Working from home gives you the chance to slow down time and enjoy the moments you know won’t last forever.
How Flexible Work Can Provide True Freedom
Flexible work gives workers the opportunity to choose a non-traditional work environment to function in. While some employers give employees the option of flexible work in extenuating circumstances (weather, sick kids, etc.), there are now more employers who are embracing this trend. The ability to work from a flexible location was suddenly thrust into the spotlight during the global health crisis of 2020. Employers who followed a strict 9-to-5 structure were given the option of allowing their employees to work from home, or face their company coming to a screeching halt. Here are some examples of some of the team members from Tangible Words who embrace the flexible work option:
Back in the Job Market After 25 Years: Freelance Work
Head editor for Tangible Words was able to spend 25 years at home raising her four kids. Once that important job had come to an end, she was faced with the dilemma of what to do with the next stage of her life. Always being a lover of the written word, she began a journey to become a copy editor. After getting a job with Tangible Words as a copy editor, she continued to see the many benefits that freelance work offered:
- The ability to maintain a certain lifestyle: Life happens and a flexible workplace offers the opportunity to handle whatever comes your way. After the death of her father, she was able to spend more time with her mother. And after her daughter gave birth to her first grandbaby, she was able to hop on a plane to Australia to help.
- The chance to network: Typically networking and improving your skills comes last on the long daily to-do list. However, in order to find the types of jobs that offered freelance opportunities, it was a necessity. Finding like-minded individuals that can help your job search is a bonus to any employee.
How Flexible Work Allowed Me to Be Myself, Illness and All
A writer for Tangible Words was working in her dream job as an engineer in race car aerodynamics - a job she had spent years working towards. However, following the diagnosis of an autoimmune disorder, she started to wonder how the stressful workplace she was in was impacting her health. After a downhill spiral in her health, she was forced to reveal her illness to her workplace. Generally, the traditional workplace does not embrace the idea of a flexible workplace. After deciding that her health was not worth a paycheque, she decided to make a drastic lifestyle change.
Being a passionate writer and reader led her to a job with Tangible Words where she started working as a copywriter. Although the flexible work, distributed office and online workplace were all amazing perks, the most surprising work from home advantage was the relationships she was able to build with colleagues she had never met. The feelings of acceptance and the culture of support encourage her to continue on in her goal of a flexible workplace.
The Many Factors Changing the Future of Work
Working from home was not the norm until March 2020. Suddenly within days the entire world seemed to shut down. Workers who typically commuted and spent 8-10 hours in an office setting were ordered to stay home. Employers were faced with the choice of allowing employees to work from home or essentially shutting down their business.
How to Flatten the Curve by Working From Home
As a global pandemic started to take over the world, we started to hear terms we had never heard before. Flatten the curve was the first one: by staying home it was anticipated that the number of COVID-19 cases would be limited. However, asking people to physically distance did not mean that the economy had to shut down. Employees just had to move their workplaces.
Obviously a rapid change of workplace is not easy to do. However, there are strategies that you can quickly implement within your home to make working from home a smoother transition.
- Set up a designated office space: While working from the couch or your bed may seem comforting (especially in strange circumstances), it is best to work in a designated office space. And while this is difficult for people who have small homes or condos, it can really improve productivity.
- Work at your most productive time of day: Working from home doesn’t necessarily mean that you will be working your usual 9 to 5, especially if you are also trying to occupy or teach small children. Find the time that is most productive for you - maybe it is before everyone else is awake, or late at night when everyone else is asleep.
- Minimize distractions: When you are working from an area that isn’t your typical workplace, it can be hard to not get distracted. If possible, leave your social media pages closed and try to avoid the television. You may also consider investing in a pair of noise-cancelling headphones.
Interested in learning if you can turn your company into a dispersed office space? Or curious to see if a flexible work schedule can work for you or your employees? Tangible Words would love to show you how we make our dispersed office work for us.