Multi-tasking and precision timing, two things we generally associate with marketing, are easily transferable skills. Picture this… Monday morning. School day. Mum. Dad. 6 year old twins and we’re running late…
7.36 am. The whole family woke up a bit late due to birthday parties, cinema visits and family shenanigans at the weekend, not a great start if you need to be at school for 9am.
8.10 am. Monday means home economics and the first thing I noticed was that their aprons hadn’t been washed. Uh oh. Time to test the 15-minute wash program. I knew I would have to use it someday. Luckily, it came up trumps and exactly 900 seconds later the items were ready. Phew! Then in the drier, folder and ready to be added to the rucksacks. And breathe…
8.20 am. While we were having breakfast, I discovered the children had to complete a bit of ‘homework’ for that day. Great! They needed to write about the vitamins and minerals contained in peanuts. (Peanuts is the name of their class – shortly followed by Butter, Jelly and Time). As this type of information wasn’t part of my daily thought, especially not in Spanish – I quickly grabbed the iPad in between two spoons of porridge and Wikipedia came to the rescue, as did Google translate.
The children wrote the down the key components in their note pads and all seemed sorted…so I thought.
8.35 am. Suddenly I realised the kitchen clock had managed to slow itself down by 20 minutes during the night, a quick glance down at my watch, back up at the clock, before I blurted out “Oh no it’s 5 to 9!!” Eeek! We were definitely going to be late today, considering it is a 10 minute walk uphill.
8.55 am. Now operating at intense speed, we got ourselves ready (teeth clean, shoes on, bags packed, jackets zipped up) and rushed out the door, only to discover 200 yards down the road that the homework was still inside the house….! (£%&&##*) I decided, that as we were already very late, 1 minute more would not make any difference, so we ran back, grabbed the note pads and set off…again.
9.05 am. For absolute fear that the side entrance would be shut (like it usually is after 9) we hiked straight to the main entrance, via a road that could be called “the hyperbole” because it’s super-steep at the end. Sweating and panting, we passed all the other parents who had already dropped off their kids (on time) and arrived to find we had timed things to perfection! No scramble at the door. Doors still open! Phew. Luckily I had brought a hair brush to sort out their mops of hair on the door step and off they went into school.
9.10 am. Calm and collected – but still a bit sweaty – I sauntered back down the hill, feeling eventually after a rather hectic morning, perfectly happy to start the working week.
So, what’s the moral of this story? Running a successful and thriving marketing agency is the perfect preparation for life with children. Yes, you heard. It keeps you on your toes, mentally challenges you, throws the unexpected at you and gives you vital skills to cope with it all, which in turn, leads to the desired result!
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Written by Ingeborg de Gooijer