August 30, 2018 / By Cynthia Ramsaran
Women have been balancing motherhood and full-time work for thousands of years. Whether it be on farms in ancient history, or in offices overlooking skylines, we all have one thing in common: we worry about our kids when we aren’t with them.
There is nothing more disruptive than worrying about your child’s well-being. Any working parent knows, (particularly mothers, who are typically the primary caregivers in the home) that being away from your child during the day can distract even the most focused professional.
Since back-to-school is right around the corner, I can’t help but think about the juggling and balancing we do during the school year. There have been countless times where I have had to leave work in the middle of the day to either pick up my sick child from school or because my childcare fell through. Even on those days, my marketing hat is always on.
I have been able to juggle posting content for our website and social channels on my phone while commuting home. I can connect my laptop almost anywhere – most recently in my mechanic’s shop waiting area – and still be able to develop a content strategy, and do a deeper dive into some business prospects.
Even though working moms/primary caregivers have a long way to go, I am lucky enough to be a marketing mom working in a more progressive time. When my mother worked outside of the home, the only way she was able to keep tabs on my two brothers and I was to call our landline at home.
Now, when I’m checking up on my son, I have many options to connect with him. During the most trying situations (think asthma, stomach flu) so that when I am home, I can stay connected to my job and vice versa. Technology has helped facilitate that.
Home is Where the “Smart” Is
Returning to work for the first time after being a stay-at-home mom for over a year, was difficult, to say the least. I had the flood of fears every mom has: Will he be fed and changed on time? Will the babysitter show him love and affection? Or will she be on her smartphone the entire time and neglect him?
I needed to know these things, to put my mind at ease. So I invested in Nest “Dropcam” cameras and software. They were affordable, but most importantly, easy to install and use with an app on my smartphone. When I made this investment four years ago, Nest was just becoming known for its cameras. Now the brand has evolved and does much more than providing a look into your home. It helps consumers look at their homes as an extension of their family.
Nest home takes care of the things we forget at times, like locking our doors or turning off lights. This Internet of Things (IoT) technology gives us so many opportunities to stay connected to our homes and, most importantly help us keep an eye on the occupants.
Play That Song, Alexa!
Another essential technology helping working moms get through the busy weeks is voice-first technology. Music has a very big place in our home and in our hearts. Songs remind us of trips, movies, and special moments. One way I stay connected to my son while I am working long hours away from him is with voice-first technology. We’ve become so reliant on our Amazon Alexa, she is almost another family member.
Even though its voice-enabled, the app allows me to choose songs from wherever I am to play for my son while he is at home. I’ll never forget the time I played a song for JJ on my long bus ride home. I peeked into the camera just in time to see the delight spill across his face. To me, that connection is priceless.
Voice-first technology isn’t only useful for connecting with our children. These smart devices are also making a big difference in letting older adults age without the risk of social isolation. A big relief to those of us with aging parents. (See related video below).
Being a marketing mom is satisfying and I know that I am working towards something that my son and I can be proud of. While being away from him during the day can sometimes gnaw away at my heart, these little advances around my house help us stay connected until he greets me at home every evening.