Eat. Sleep. Change. Cry. Scream. Eat. Change. Sleep. Cry. Scream. Eat. Eat. Eat. Sleep. Scream. Change. Cry. Sleep. This routine may ring familiar to many new parents out there and may be exactly what one of your employees is dealing with after their working day. The unconditional love for their precious newborn balances out the exhaustion, but it is certainly still there. More commonly than not, a new Dad returns to work one or two weeks after the birth of a child. From a business perspective, this seems like a long time, however from a personal perspective, two weeks is not long at all – especially dealing with such a vast change in lives. Pressures and responsibilities at home increase when a new baby enters the world. Here we explore what to be aware of, as an employer to a new father.
Dad’s have feelings too
The NHS have recently done a push to increase awareness of mental health, however post-natal depression in fathers is a subject not commonly discussed. Having a baby is a life changing event. Be supportive towards the new Dad in the office, they may be under a lot of pressure and are adapting to a huge change at home.
Talk, talk, talk
Make extra effort to check in on your new Dad’s wellbeing. Simply enquiring in your one-to-one meetings; “how are you handling the change at home?”, “how are you feeling?” “are you able to cope of with all the extra pressures?”. Acknowledging the changes your employee is going through and offering support where you can is vital and helps more than you realise.
Flexible working: Dad’s working request
With more and more mothers returning to work, either full or part-time, childcare often becomes a split responsibility. As an employer, it is important that a father’s request for flexible working is considered in exactly the same way as a mother’s. Additionally, new Dad’s may now need to share the cover for when the baby/children are ill or childcare falls through – it’s important to expect these requests from all staff, not just Mum’s.
The legal bit: Shared Parental Leave
It’s imperative you ensure your employee handbooks and policies are updated to reflect legal entitlements. Please get in touch with us here at CitrusHR Consulting if you would like any support with updating documentation.
Becoming a new parent is both a magical and challenging time. A supportive and understanding employer can make the world of difference to your employees wellbeing.
Please do get in touch with us here at CitrusHR Consulting if you require any further support or advice. Call us on 0844 854 6704 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.