As entrepreneurs, many of us are committed to doing whatever it takes to ensure that our business venture makes it. Whether this means being at the office for 18 hours a day or traveling for business five days a week, we are committed to the success of our juvenile business ventures. Unfortunately, this often means that those at home, like our families, get shorted when it come to our attention.
Scott Weiss, who was instrumental in launching IronPort, recently published four tips for entrepreneurs who wish to excel in both business and home life.
Disconnect to connect. Although what we are doing at work may seem more important than what is going on at home, it isn't. In order to connect with your loved ones, disconnect from the happenings at work. When you are at home, focus on what matters there, not what is going on at the office. Physically being at home doesn't really count if you are still mentally at work.
Be more than present. Participate. This might mean taking off from the office early to attend a parent/teacher conference, or simply getting home before your spouse and preparing dinner. Whatever it is, dive into home life like you would a task at work. Being present doesn't cut it, but participating does.
Be an active communicator. In order to prove your commitment to family, it is important to communicate frequently. Weiss talks about being the "parent on duty" when his wife is traveling for work. This entails keeping his phone on, even during meetings, in case a situation arises with his kids. Dependability is an important part of being an active family member, and good communication is essential in this process.
Know your priorities. If you have a weekly date night with your spouse, don't schedule a meeting during that time. If your daughter has a soccer game on Tuesday evening, know that you can't be at the office during this time. Prioritizing the things that are important to you is important in a good work-life balance. By investing in important relationships you create a better work-life balance, which will ultimately make you a better leader in the work place.