As a parent, I want my children to be happy and successful. As they were growing up, I wanted them to experience the real world with part time jobs where they would earn spending money, learn new skills and build their resumes.
As an employer I want my employees to be successful, productive and love their jobs. The sparks fly when these two worlds collide.
Both my daughter Michelle (aka @minipeg) and my son Harrison have worked at Roundpeg in high school and college, and even once after Michelle graduated for varying lengths of time. For Harrison it was always just a part time gig, to fill hours between other jobs. He brought his sense of fun which always made me laugh, even if he never would acknowledge that Roundpeg had become a real company. The customers always loved Michelle, but she didn’t always love the job.
Sooner or later, they would quit, or more likely I fired them. We laugh about it now, but it wasn’t always easy along the way. And I learned a lot in the process:
- Don’t talk about work at home – leave the office at the office
- Have your kids call you by your first name just as your employees do – and no special treatment. They have to work the same hours, same deadlines or your other employees will resent them
- Leave your baggage at home. I was often harder or more critical of Michelle when she made a mistake, because we had so much history unrelated to the office.
- When possible have them work directly for someone other then you. They are more likely to treat it like a real job
- Don’t be afraid to fire them if it isn’t working. In the long run, it isn’t fair to you, your company, your other employees or your children