When the Beast from the East 2.0 blew in during lockdown 3.0 it proved a perfect combination to make the case for flexible working
It’s not the biggest, best or strongest argument for it, but snow is an argument for flexible working.
When the south and east of the country was inundated with the white stuff this week it made the news. Despite the fact other bits of Britain have been enduring/enjoying snow for weeks. The fact it took a blizzard in my back garden for me to blog about it makes me as complicit as anyone in that London-centric outlook!
But it did get me thinking about the benefits of working flexibly.
At WM People we live our values. So the entire team generally works flexibly and at home. Consequently when the really good snow landed overnight on Monday I was able to arrange my day around some sledging. And sledging is the correct term. I’ve heard too many people refer to ‘sledding’ this past week. From my daughter’s Australian friend that’s fine, sledging means something else over there and their cricketers in particular are very good at it. (Possibly better than they are at actual cricket currently). But here surely you sledge on a sledge? Do put me right in the comments if you think I’m wrong and I’m unwittingly peddling a Scottish-ism.
Heaven knows all our kids could do with some variety and stimulation at the moment. Snow provides both. So it was important to me to be able to make the most of the snow while it lasted, even though it hit on a weekday. (Personally, having grown up in Scotland I’ve had my fill of snow for a lifetime but my London offspring are understandably excited when there’s a snow day once every few years).
Because I work flexibly I could sack off work in the afternoon and hit the slopes. Or at least the slope in a nearby park. I felt like a pretty good dad for doing so. But my efforts in the top dad department paled compared to the man who’d broken up an old cot and fashioned it into a pair of homemade skis for himself and a sledge for his daughter. That was some skillz right there (as I believe the kids say).
I couldn’t can work altogether of course. I had to pick up my tasks in the evening. But I didn’t mind a bit.
And that’s the joy of flexible working for working dads, all working parents. At the end of the day I didn’t feel guilty because we’d missed the window of snow opportunity. And I didn’t feel like a chancer for skipping work. Everyone was happy – kids, boss, me. And that is the biggest, best and strongest argument for flexible working – that, whatever the weather, the work gets done and everyone ends up happier.