December 1, 2012
The Family Influence
As we’ve discussed and studied various topics in class, I’m almost always internally projecting the topics on two organizational groups I’m a part of. The first organizational group is that organization I work for, my company, the main reason I am pursuing my MBA. The second organizational group is my family. I often make notes after reading articles or discussions about how I can apply that point to my life in the various different situations. If you were to go to Wikipedia and search for the ideal family, you’re likely to see a description of our family makeup. Myself, my beautiful wife, and our two children comprise our family. Yes we have the post card family, a father, a mother, the older son, the younger daughter, and the single happy go-lucky dog. All we are really missing is the white picket fence. Gallup Poll - 2007
On September 22 we were talking about motivation and different aspects of the Theory of Life. During this discussion a point was raised that I’m a big proponent of, which is the role of the parent, and the quality and quantity of time that needs to be spent with the children. I’m probably in the minority, but I truly believe much of the current problems with our nation can be traced back to the absence of parental involvement with their children’s lives. My wife has her college degree, but we made a decision before our children were ever born, that the most important thing she could do when they were born was to be a mom. This was a sacrifice for her and her career, but to us, it was the only way we should raise our children.
We felt it was important to focus on the quality and quantity of time she could spend with our son and daughter. Society tends to market this approach as an antiquated approach; an approach that doesn’t fit with culture today. Society tends to sell the fact that you have to have a successful career if you want to amount to anything. I would argue that the role of a parent is much more important than any of our other jobs / careers. When we make the decision to have children, we need to be making a commitment to help them in all the best ways we can. For most of us, what we are doing will have some lifelong impact. The business we do will affect people’s lives, or at the very least allow others to do tasks that may change people’s lives. How about our job as a parent? It is guaranteed to affect your children, and most likely to some degree most future generations will be shaped in some form by the experiences of your children. I really don’t think the majority of people truly look at how they spend their time and how much of that time is spent with (or without) their children. Below is a simple timeline of a typical professional’s day: No.TimeTaskHours% of 24 Hours
16:00 – 7:00Wake-up, get dressed, breakfast 1.04.17% 27:00 – 7:30Commute to work0.52.08%
37:30 – 5:30Work10.041.67%
45:30 – 6:00Commute from work0.52.08%
56:00 - 7:00Return home, dinner1.04.17%
67:00 – 10:00Assorted evening activities3.012.5%
710:00 – 11:00Prepare for bed, shower, etc.1.04.17% 811:00 – 6:00Sleep7.029.17%
One could debate the exact timeline, but it would be hard to argue that for the average individual the timeline varies by much more than 10%. Now let’s look at the various tasks, and the times when a working parent might interact with their child.
1Some portion of the time getting the child up and fed0.5 2Some portion of the commute, the child might be in the car with the parent0.25 3None0.0
4Some portion of the commute, the child might be in the car with the parent0.25 5Most of this time there is potential involvement1.0
6Assuming an earlier bedtime and no extracurricular activities1.5 7None0.0
What kind of influence are...