Recently I’ve noticed more dads with their kids, not only being picked up from schools but also in coffee shops and playgrounds over the weekend.
Then I read an article in Saturday papers that confirmed what I had noticed that week: more dads are choosing to work less hours and spend more time with their loved ones. How great is that!
An increasing number of British dads are wising up with more than a million now choosing to work part time to spend more time with their children and enjoy a better quality of life.
Isn’t that cool?
Peter Glover, the senior research manager at the UK Commission for Employment and Skills, said that the “underlying long-term trend is towards an increased proportion of men working part time”.
While men typically go part-time for lifestyle reasons, there is a correlation between working less to balance “caring responsibilities”, he said. “These responsibilities are one of the main reasons why women work part-time, so it makes sense that it is the same for men.”
The number of men who did not want a full-time job reached one million at the start of the year and is rising, according to the most recent figures from the Office for National Statistics. The figure has more than tripled since 1992.
Two years ago Matthew Usher swapped careers in order to work part time for his wife’s company GingerMayPR. Mr Usher, 42, from Tunbridge Wells, Kent, spent eight years in the military followed by 18 years with the police before changing jobs for a better work-life balance. A life of “rigid structure” has been exchanged for school drop offs, PTA meetings, nativity plays and nights cheering on his daughter at netball practice. His wife, Victoria, has replaced him as the main breadwinner.
Ed Haddon, an entrepreneur, swapped the city for country life after his first child, May, began nursery. He now works fewer hours, dividing his time between his two businesses as a life coach and a crazy golf course owner, and uses his extra day off to spend time with his children, keep fit and catch up on reading.
As a life coach based in Somerset, he guides people through “structuring their life so that they are not a slave to their job”. He said: “At some point between 35 and 50 most people are known to have a mid-life crisis where they think, ‘Am I doing what I want?’.”
This is exactly where Phil Baker, 45, found himself three years ago. “I would suggest my age is one of the drivers of going part-time,” he said.
If you are a dad reading this and you are unhappy with your current situation and are looking for a change that would support your ideal work-life balance, don’t hesitate to comment below!