How to Keep Your Career on Track While You're a Mom
Sparkplugging | DivineCaroline
I came across a Wall Street Journal article recently called “More New Mothers Are Staying Home Even When It Causes Financial Pain.” Author Sue Shellenbarger wrote a fantastic piece on how moms are choosing to stay at home—at great financial costs to families—in order to stay with their young babies during the first few years of their lives. Lots o’ great dads are doing it too!
I have been at home for the first few years of all of my children’s lives, and successfully either re-entered the workforce or brought in a decent income via my own businesses fairly consistently throughout the last thirteen years.
I tried putting my little babies in day care—I just couldn’t take it. I don’t think it is a wrong decision for anyone—it was just the wrong decision for me.
What worked for me? I love business—so whether I worked forty hours a week or four, I have always had to have my hands in my industry. Which brings up a good point—if you are passionate about your industry, it’s MUCH easier to stay interested and involved with it during the years that you decide to stay at home and be a full time mom.
One of the biggest challenges women face once their children are school age is to reenter the work force—here are my tips to make this difficult transition much easier:
1. Consider starting a work at home business. No big surprises I am suggesting this one. In fact, thanks to running my freelance graphic design business from 2000-2004, I was able to go back out and get a job as a marketing recruiter fairly easily when I wanted to get a job outside of the home. In fact, I was able to negotiate a higher salary than I was making in my last full time gig (AND more than I was making as a designer, too!!). The reason this is so important is because I maintained my business skills, added new skills to my resume, and stayed on top of trends in the industry the entire time I was at home. I made myself more marketable as an employee along the way.