Saturday, January 8, 2011

Guilty at home and at work?

Re, previous post: what if you feel guilty at home and at work? Can you be great at both? According to Dr. Flynn (article here), people who feel guilty at work are more likely to be perceived as excellent leaders.

But will all that dedication to work make it difficult to give your all at home too? This is something I have not reconciled -- and it's why I work part time!

I need your advice on this folks. What is the balance between being an excellent leader at work and excellent leader at home?

1 comment:

  1. What an interesting question! Is it possible to be an excellent leader at home and work?? I am the mother of two and over the last ten years, I have stayed home fulltime, worked part-time, and now am working fulltime in a professional level position in Higher Ed.

    There is definitely a gender dimension to Illysa's question. I don't know that most men worry so much about being excellent at work conflicting with being excellent at home. My husband, for example, views working hard in his career as a way that he provides and cares for his family. As a woman, I more often frame the situation as choosing between investing my energy at work versus investing my energy at home. (In other words, working is somehow "taking away" from my kids.) When my children were little and I was working part-time, I remember having a hard time ever feeling really good about either role (work or home).

    Now that my oldest child is 13, I have started viewing my work/home life more holistically. I have to find the balance that maximizes my positive energy and values, and I choose to approve of my choices. (It's a fast track to misery to need others to validate our choices.) I see commitment, authentic engagement, and enthusiasm as attractive in leaders at home and work, but I would not say that "guilt" (fear based) is very useful. Draining, yes. Useful, no.