Working from home with children Interview <NorthAM edition part 2>

Community Manager

Hi Community, 


Welcome to the fifth edition of this series. As you know it has been almost two months since HubSpot temporarily closed its global offices and all HubSpot employees started to work remotely in response to COVID-19. As the world practices social distancing, we know many of our Community members are in the same situation. 


This time we’ve interviewed a few HubSpotters from our NorthAM region. Our first interview is with our VP of Customer Support. 



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David Hunt

Role: VP of Customer Support : Cambridge

Child’s age: 11 months




Could you share your work and what a day looks like? 


Wake up at 6am, when my daughter wakes up. Feed her breakfast (grapefruit or bananas are currently favorite) and I have coffee. After breakfast, we'll play together until work starts. I sometimes have early meetings with international teams, but I am definitely working by 9am. My wife and I take turns spending time with her throughout the day while we work.


9-10 is a challenge as she starts to get grumpy before a nap. I've recently ran a global meeting while rocking her to sleep. Nap time is my most productive time of the day these days. 2 nap days > 1 nap days. Sometime she'll play while I work, and sometimes she'll mash my keyboard and try to delete my work. I try to be offline by 5pm, but sign off by 6 at the latest. Dinner, bath, bed by 7:30pm. I try not to work late nights more than 1-2 times per week when I have calls with Singapore. Then it all starts over again the next day!


How has your WFH with children experience been?


While it's chaotic and exhausting, it's also been really special to get to spend more time with her. You get to witness certain developmental milestones and share many once in a lifetime moments. It has been a silver lining of this whole experience.


What are your challenges about WFH with children? 


You have less control over your day; therefore, you have to adjust your expectations about what you'll be able to get done, and more than ever prioritize the most important stuff.



What type of activity is working for your child while you are working, having meetings, etc?


She loves looking at books, playing with instruments, following the dog around, and playing with blocks.



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Emily Tong

Role: Revenue Operations Specialist : Remote

Child’s age: 5 years old




Could you share your work and what a day looks like? 


Every day is a little bit different for my son, because he splits his time between my house and his dad's house. On the days that he's home with me (Mondays, Tuesdays, and every other Friday), we start the day early with breakfast and teeth brushing as usual. We spend some time outside -- either walking the dog or playing in the backyard. Then, he watches TV for an hour or 2, while I work on some of my more thought-consuming projects. We take a break for a mid-morning snack. From that point, I give him a choice of playing with Legos, building things, coloring, playing games on the computer, or looking at books while I continue working -- often we are sharing the office space while this is happening. We take another break for lunch and outside time/roughhousing/hide & seek. In the afternoon, we just wing it. It's very ad hoc. He takes a nap sometimes, which is great. 

My partner is taking Tuesdays off, now, which means that she's spending time with him while I focus on work. These are my favorite days, because when I take a break from work, I get to jump into whatever fun thing they are doing (bubbles or stomp rockets, for example) and be fully present. I can also be fully present when I return to work activities.


How has your WFH with children experience been?


It has been hard to change my son's expectations about my availability. He is used to me dropping everything to spend time with him, but now he has to learn to wait. This is creating a lot of friction between us, but also better communication. 

If I have a meeting, the easiest thing to do is pause 5 minutes before the meeting and get him set up to hang out on his own for 30 minutes. The rule for meetings is "Wait, and find something else to do." This sinks in somewhat, but after a weekend or a few days at dad's house, I have to remind him multiple times.


What are your challenges about WFH with children? 


There are a lot of micro-interruptions. It's harder to get into the flow of work while my son is home with me, which means that it can take me longer to get things done. 

He gets mad and has tantrums, which is new. 



What type of activity is working for your child while you are working, having meetings, etc?


We put a mattress in the living room. He bounces and watches TV, and also chases the dog and cat around the house while I am busy.  


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I hope you find these interviews interesting and you are learning from our HubSpotters from different regions and countries. We will publish another interview soon, stay tuned!

1 Reply 1

Hello! Thank you for sharing people's experience!

Although I don't have children, it's very interesting to know how parents are managing their day to day with their job!