With Father’s Day coming up, many men will be soul-searching about the type of dad they are. Are they better or worse than their own father? Have they played enough football or read enough stories to their kids in the past year? Or is work getting in the way of family life?
With a recent study revealing that 70% of British dads feel that long hours in the office are impacting on the quality of family life, it seems as though many men are feeling the strain of juggling their career with life at home. Our experts at Regus have come up with five profiles of today’s working dads – which one do you recognize?
Aka: “I’m going to be late” Dad.
Works: City centre.
About him: The 9-5 Dad’s youngest child thinks his father’s a train driver because he’s always phoning from the train. He avoids long hours at the office, but still gets home late because he commutes 45 minutes each way – on a good day.
By the time The 9-5 Dad gets home, he’s stressed and exhausted. However hard he tries to be back for bathtime, he’s invariably late or irritable.
Dislikes: Leaves on the line, signal failure, other passengers, the exorbitant price of his season ticket, commuting
Wishes: He could work closer to home and have more time for his family
Aka: “I’ve lost the signal” Dad.
Works: On the move.
Lives: Near a motorway.
About him: The Travelling Dad is always on the move between clients. He does much of his work in laybys, service stations and coffee shops, struggling to balance phone, laptop and papers on a tiny table or on his steering wheel.
Traffic congestion means he often misses the children’s bedtime, and leaves home early in the morning – certainly too early to do the school run, and frequently before the children are up.
Dislikes: Contraflows, roadworks, service station coffee prices.
Wishes: He had somewhere decent to make calls and do admin. And that he could be better-tempered at kids’ bedtime.
Aka: Up in the Air Dad.
Works: All over the place.
Lives: Near an airport.
About him: The Invisible Dad’s children see him on Skype more often than in the flesh. He dutifully brings back Toblerones from the airport and the latest techno-gadgets from the Far East. He also has 200,000 airmiles, which pay for good long-haul holidays, and he gets great upgrades on car hire and hotels. But he suspects his children would rather he was there for their birthdays or school plays.
Dislikes: Pretzels, air traffic controllers’ strikes and slow airport security checks.
Wishes: He spent less time in hotels.
Aka: Solopreneur Dad
Works: In the spare room
About him: The Work-at-Home Dad and his family were delighted when he set up a business. They had visions of Dad combining hands-on parenting with the satisfaction of working for himself.
But he hadn’t anticipated the annoying background noise of children’s daytime TV, and he struggles with the lack of space, administrative back-up and networking opportunities. Even though he’s available to look after children, he’s always distracted and glued to his mobile or another piece of technology.
Dislikes: CBeebies, IT helplines
Wishes: There was a way to combine the flexibility of being his own boss with a better working environment
Aka: Have-it-all Dad
About him: The Super Dad not only knows the name of his children’s teachers, he has helped on school trips. He takes the children to school three mornings a week, and usually manages not to check his Blackberry on the way.
The Super Dad works some days in the office, and some at a local business centre. If there’s a childcare emergency, he works at home. The arrangement suits him, his family and his employer.
Dislikes: The attitude that family-friendly working practices are only for women
Wishes: There were more dads to talk to in the school playground.
About our experts
Regus, the world’s largest provider of workplace solutions offer the the widest range of products and services that allow individuals and companies to work however, wherever, and whenever they need to. Their range of ready-to-go ‘Rehus-in-a-box’ packs provide on-demand access to business lounges at any of the 150+ Regus business centres across the UK (or across the 1,100 centres worldwide for globetrotting dads), where he can work in peace and comfort with free internet access and refreshments. For more information, visit www.regusdirect.co.uk