A New Balancing Act

A few months ago I became a mother, and just like that, this Researcher became a new demographic. After a decade in the industry, I had never given much thought about whether an individual who might be categorized across 2-3 dimensions (White, Female, age 25-35) could change both profoundly and subtly in attitudes and behaviors when a new dimension was added – ‘with children’.

Perhaps the biggest shift in attitude for me is the notion of work/life balance. Frankly, I hadn’t given it much thought before my son was born. Ok, that’s not quite the truth. I have to admit I was one of the eye-rolling child-free colleagues who envied the flex-time parents or the ones who seemed to leave at 5 guilt-free.

BuzzBack’s wonderful attitude toward family balance is one of the things that make this company great. But I never thought about how important that was until I needed it. I am lucky to work at a company where the quality of work delivered is valued over the hours clocked. BuzzBack offers room for all kinds of working styles, arrangements, and hybrid combinations.

I read an article recently where that’s not always the case in Market Research. And the piece could easily be applied to many workplaces. It’s cliché to say that, until your own eyes are opened, issues of balance are either not considered at all, or viewed as special treatment for the whiny. Until now, I never thought about the challenge that caregivers face. And it’s not just those with kids, but also colleagues who care for an ailing family member, a life partner, a spouse, or an aging parent.

My demographic shift is changing my view of other things too – some I’m just becoming aware of, and others I’m sure to discover. Issues like sustainability and the environment, food safety and science, health care, education. As a responder, I wonder how different my insights would be a year ago versus today. Motherhood has opened my eyes to many things, and makes me appreciate the impact of major life events on consumer attitudes, behaviors, emotions and perceptions.