Bringing the lessons of parenthood into the workplace

Harvard Business Review’s three ways to manage relationships in home and office

There’s an unfortunate lack of spillover between what you learn at home as a parent and what you learn at work. However, these skills are transferable.

Here are three lessons that can help you manage your relationships with both your children and your colleagues.

1 Adapting to change

As a parent, you’re constantly adapting to new situations. The moment you think that you have everyone on board and things are going smoothly, the situation changes. Children challenge you to accept that stability is not normal. Parenting allows you to reflect with your children, and learn from your mistakes. The same skills are an asset in today’s workforce.


2 Respecting psychological safety as a universal need

How often do you think about making your co-workers feel safe? If you’re like most people, it’s not often.

But as a parent how often do you think about making your children feel safe? Probably every day.

Parents seek to create an environment where children can learn and grow, challenge themselves and share their fears. The more you can create a positive, open environment, the stronger your relationship with your children will become.

In the same way, at the office one of the most important leadership tasks is managing relationships. The more you can adopt a nurturing, open mindset with colleagues, the stronger your bonds will be.

3 Self-reflecting and continually improving

Like leadership coaches, parenting experts encourage not only questioning your approaches, but learning from your mistakes and your children's feedback. Authentic parenting, like authentic leadership, helps you be true to your values, take feedback, actively listen and experiment with new approaches.

– Copyright Harvard Business Review 2016