What Do Our Businesses Teach Our Kids About Work?

I like to think that my home business is modeling some really great things for my kids. Of course, they often wish that I had a “real” job or something that looked more like many of their friends. But, they’ve also grown so used to my flexibility and availability that they take my presence for granted. If I worked a hard-driving 60-hour a week job, they might not have absorbed the same sorts of things about work that they have from being around my home-based business.

I’m hoping that my children are learning work ethic and the realities of how work effort is a direct correlation with income. Since I don’t do the sort of job where I go off and get paid no matter what, I hope that my kids are learning that efforts (or lack of effort) can influence the family coffers. I also hope that being around a business is helping to free up their minds for their own possibilities. Instead of just assuming that they will grow up, get educated, and go off to work for someone else—I’m hoping that they are realizing there are entrepreneurial opportunities for them too.

In addition to all the work ethic “stuff,” I also hope that by being around my home-based business, my kids are also absorbing some of the “joy” I feel at being able to do work I love on my own terms. Since it doesn’t feel at all like a “drudge” or the “have to go to work” kind of job, I hope I’m sharing with them that work CAN be a joy and we can have more control over our work environment if we’re willing to take the risks.

Recently, someone did accuse me of “spoiling” my kids for a more traditional scene. There could be some truth to that as they definitely have very high expectations about flexibility and availability and how work should be integrated into family life (and family life integrated into work)—but I’m not entirely convinced that is a bad thing…

See Also: Does My Work-at-Home Business Spoil My Children? and Managing Your Kid’s Sick Days When You Work From Home