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Working mom Caitlin Friedman shares professional strategies that pay huge dividends at home.
Be a Good Manager
“Good managers make themselves available and are clear about their expectations,” says Friedman, who recently co-authored the book Family Inc.: Office-Inspired Solutions to Reduce the Chaos in Your Home (and Save Your Sanity!) with her husband, Andrew. “If you ask your kids to do something, explain what the job entails and be available to answer questions, just like you would with employees.”
Delegate and Outsource
“You can’t do everything. Look at your to-do list and decide what you can delegate to family members and what you can afford to outsource. Then find the best people to do it. My husband and I used to do our own taxes; then we accepted that there were people who could do it better and faster than us. Our time was better spent elsewhere.”
Write Job Descriptions
“A company would never hire a contractor without a contract. Before you hire anyone, from a dog walker to a gardener, write a job description. Be clear about duties, and include how much you’re going to pay. Have the description ready when you start interviews so your potential hires know what’s expected. This will help keep you free from conflict and misunderstanding.”
“Businesses keep close tabs on their supplies and equipment for good reason. Once a year, give your household systems a checkup. Write down what will need repairing or replacing, and make sure you have the warranty information and instruction manuals properly filed. Then add any anticipated costs to your annual budget.”
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