My Interview with “Daddy Blogger” on Work-Family Balance for Dads

Ricky Shetty of Daddy Blogger recently interviewed me for his blog and youtube channel. The interview is about 17 minutes long, and we cover a range of topics: General advice for dads The different joys and challenges kids of different ages present for dads Advice for new, first-time and expectant dads Enjoying your kids Light-saber … Read more

How a Working Dad (*me*) Champions Work-Family Balance (repost from FlexJobs.com)

The folks at flexjobs.com were nice enough to interview me for a feature on their website. Here’s a copy of the article.

How a Working Dad Champions Work-Family Balance

by:  FlexJobs Director of Content & Community

Flexjobs.com interviewed me, and made me look really good. Thanks!!!!
Flexjobs.com interviewed me, and made me look really good. Thanks!!!!

Scott Behson wears quite a few hats. He’s an Associate Professor of Management and a popular blogger on the topics of fatherhood, work, and family. He’s also a husband and father, and his academic research focuses on the topics of workplace flexibility and work-family balance. Naturally, we couldn’t wait to talk to Scott! Read on for some great anecdotes about how husbands can help their wives “lean in” to their careers, how being a father can make you better at your job, and some great resources for working parents.

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Watch Me on Huffington Post Live!

I was happy to be asked to join a panel of experts and parents on HuffPost Live for a half-hour live show,  “Leaning Together,” about Sheryl Sandberg’s “Lean In” and Lisa Belkin’s article about how, in order for women to “Lean In” to careers, men have to do more at home.

A screencap of my 3/19/13 appearance on Huff Post Live!
A screencap of my 3/19/13 appearance on Huff Post Live!

The segment originally aired Wednesday afternoon, but you can watch it here at your leisure. http://live.huffingtonpost.com/r/segment/sheryl-sandberg-lean-in-housework/514681e42b8c2a44010002a2 (please follow the link, stupid WordPress doesn’t embed video very well)

It was a great discussion about careers, gender, and the division of paid and household work between couples. I defend men as more involved than they are often given credit for, and emphasize the importance of discussing your priorities and career goals with your spouse, and acting like a true team in order to support each other.

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Sheryl Sandberg’s “Lean In” and Its Lessons For Working Dads

Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg’s book “Lean In” also contains lessons for working dads

Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg's new book, "Lean In" also has some great lessons for working dads
Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg’s new book, “Lean In” also has some great lessons for working dads

I admit I haven’t yet read Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg’s book “Lean In: Women, Work and the Will to Lead”- it was just released today. But I have read a lot of what has been written about the book, and think that, while Sandberg’s book was obviously written for working women, it contains lessons for dads as well.  I’ll read and review the book as soon as I can (if it is as good as her TED talk, it will be excellent), but until then, here’s what I’ve picked up so far from the media coverage:

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A Working Parent’s Guide to Surviving a Snow Day

When you have two working parents, unexpected days without school can really put you out. Snow days are awesome for kids. Not so for parents. By planning ahead, we can make them easier for us to handle.

Snow days are great for kids, but not so much for working parents!
Snow days are great for kids, but not so much for working parents!

Dear God, Don’t Let Them Cancel School!

Not long ago, I was awoken at 5am by the home telephone. Considering the time, and since no one (except my mom or telemerketers) calls me on the home phone, my disorientation turned to dread as I saw that it had begun to snow overnight. Before I could reach the phone, the answering machine picked up and I heard:

“This is an important message from the Nyack school district. Classes are cancelled for the day”

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

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How to Cope with Work-Family Conflict and Stress (part 2)

Part 2 of a Series- Informal Work Accommodations to Family

In this series of articles, I’ll look at research and best practices to provide some advice on how to better handle the stress that comes with juggling work-family conflict.

Ever feel like this because of work-family conflict? Maybe Informal Work Accommodations to Family can help.
Ever feel like this because of work-family conflict? Maybe Informal Work Accommodations to Family can help.

In part 1 of this series, I described problem-focused coping as a way to reduce the stress that comes from work-family conflict. I’ll give you a minute to go back and refresh youselves… Ok, you’re back? Great. Now for part two.

While knowing about problem-focused coping is useful, those tactics are pretty general. That got me to thinking “wouldn’t it be great if someone figured out some problem-focused coping behaviors specific to people trying to juggle work and family?”

You know what? Someone did… And that person was me! Work-family specific coping strategies were the focus of my dissertation, and I’d like to share a little of this with you today.

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How to Cope with Work-Family Conflict and Stress (part 1)

Part 1 of a Series- Problem Focused Coping

In this series of articles, I’ll look at research and best practices to provide some advice on how to better handle the stress that comes with juggling work-family conflict.

Ever feel like this because of work-family conflict? Maybe problem-focused coping can help.
Ever feel like this because of work-family conflict? Maybe problem-focused coping can help.

You promised your family you’d get home early to get to the school recital. But your boss just pushed back the department meeting to the end of the day. You can’t be in two places at once.

What do you do? (we’ll get to that)

How do you feel? STRESSED

Stress occurs when the demands you face (promise made to family vs. work demands) seem to exceed your capacity for handling them (Can you miss the meeting without consequences? How will your family react?).

Obviously, work-family conflict can result in significant levels of stress, as the demands of our two most important and demanding adult roles (family and work) compete for a finite resource, time, as well as an only-slowly-renewable resource, our mental and emotional energy.

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What is Work-Family Balance, Anyway?

“The beginning of wisdom is to call things by their proper name” – Confucius

After a vacation week at Disney, FWF blog is back for 2013
After a vacation week at Disney, FWF blog is back for 2013

Since starting this blog, I’ve been writing 2000 words a week on the general theme of work-family balance.  Before that, I published several academic journal articles and a dissertation about work-family balance (my cv here). You would think this would make the concept of work-family balance very clear to me. However, “balance” is exquisitely difficult to precisely define.

It is easier to define what work-family balance is not. I can confidently say it is not:

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