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Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

The New Normal of Balancing the Personal & Professional

Below, Deepti Menon, HR Director, Product & Services and New Market Programs, is sharing about her own work-from-home experience and how she’s been balancing the personal and professional.

As professionals worldwide continue to experience the effects of the COVID-19 outbreak, we’re experiencing changes in routine, daily structure, and the way we’ve lived our lives. 

Over the past few months, we’ve all experienced a global transformation. The way in which we lived our lives has changed drastically. Our daily routines no longer consist of commuting to the office, meeting up with friends, or daily visits to the local grocery store. Instead, we’re spending more time at home with family or connecting with coworkers via video chat. 

This is our new normal and we’re all still learning to adapt to different challenges. I’ve had to adjust not only to working remotely, but also balancing and prioritizing time with my family, as I’m sure many of you have had to do as well. Like many women around the world, I have multiple jobs – not just my role as an HR Director at Gartner. 

I am a mom, a teacher, a caretaker, a chef, and everything in between throughout a typical day. How do I manage all of this while successfully managing my workload?? With a lot of help. During the workweek, my family lives with my mom and then returns to our home on the weekends to spend time with my in-laws. Leveraging these resources to create this balance has been the only way I can manage caring for my husband and 3 children – who range in age from 3 to 6 years old. 

So, how have I managed to prioritize the needs of my family while still executing on my work? I’ve started to manage my time in shifts. Below, I’m sharing my schedule in hopes that it may help some of you.

  •  Shift 1: My day starts off early – but it’s the only time I get to myself. While my family sleeps I get in a 40-minute workout. Exercise helps to keep me mentally and physically balanced. 
  • Shift 2: It’s time for my 3 adorable boys to wake up. I make them breakfast, make sure they’re bathed, read a few books and then it’s just about time to start their online school lessons. 
  • Shift 3: With some help from my husband and mother, we’re able to wrangle my two oldest to ensure they’re focused on their schoolwork and care for the youngest. I hop on my morning calls and answer emails – did I mention that we’re all in the same room? Things can get a little noisy. 
  • Shift 4: Lunchtime! My mom and I will prepare a quick snack for the kids and then I put the baby down for a nap. As he sleeps, I answer more emails or work on projects – talk about multitasking! Once awake, it’s playtime for the kids while I continue with calls. It’s totally normal to see one of them in the background of a video call – but that’s standard for most people these days. 
  • Shift 5: I try to take a break around 5 or 6 PM to spend an hour with my boys and play. Before COVID-19, I would come home from the office, eat dinner and play, then take calls with my team in the U.S. after they were asleep. It’s all about time management. 

I know that balancing it all can be overwhelming at times – but it’s important to remember to take a few deep breaths and figure out what will work best for you and your family. Be open and transparent with your team – so many of us are in the same boat. Don’t be afraid to share about your struggles – between pets, kids and other family members, we’ve all had to adjust and will continue to learn and adapt.

Learn more about our corporate culture and what it’s like to work at Gartner here.