Title: Top Tips for Talented Working Parents
Author: Jo Lyon & Harriet Beveridge
This A6 book is something you can pop in your pocket, briefcase or handbag to have to hand for any spare moment. It is a resource you can dip in and out of and you certainly don’t need to have a long attention span (parents – I can almost hear you saying ‘thank goodness!’). Each of the 15 chapters are 2-3 pages long and contain lists of tips with a couple of “Coaching Questions” at the end of each topic. As a time-poor working parent myself, when I received this in the post I was excited at the prospect of being able to read it in one evening and I wanted to dive in straight away.
What lies between the covers is really practical and sound advice for any parent to be, returning to work or even back at work parent. I expected that it would be written for mums but I passed over chapters to my husband which he has found useful as a working parent, partner and as our daughter’s primary carer.
The tips are challenging and applicable and I felt that it was written by a parent (and it has been written by two working mums) who had experience as nothing suggested was unrealistic. When I read tip two in the first topic area, “What do you want from work and home?”, it really hit home about the unrealistic expectations we put upon ourselves as parents in the workplace based on role models we have had in our own families and the ongoing conflicts between working and being a parent.
The day after the book arrived I was able to share the topic “Managing work with little sleep” with a colleague who had had a bad night with her poorly daughter; she has taken one tip on board to try.
I have been back at work now for just under three years and am still working on being a better talented working parent. I wasn’t sure if this book would be right for me. What I really liked was in each of the topic areas I found comments that made me stop and think and provoked some reassessment for the future. There are still aspects I struggle with like how to switch off when I am not meant to be working and although I knew all the tips that were suggested, the book gave me the push to put some into practice to see what the results would be.
I think this book would be valuable for any new parent and any working parent at a cross roads of changing the balance of working and parenting.
- The reviewer this time was Helen Bradley.
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