Here at the Hazz Design home office, we are buzzing with new announcements:
First up is this spin-off blog all about our adventures working from home. We’ve done this because so many people had great questions during our Lifehacker Live Q/A on How We Work from Home and have continued to tweet and email us. Plus we wanted to make it convenient for those of you interested in subscribing and reviewing our archives on this specific topic only.
Second, our new design partnership with Mod Mom Furniture has brought up so many great internal debates, questions and ideas about designing for working parents, about being work-at-home parents ourselves and about designing furniture that can span an entire childhood. We are uniquely suited for this last one having kids at all stages right now, which brings us to our third announcement…
Third and last (definitely last!) we are expecting our third child! Our teen and toddler are both thrilled and so are we…but, this puts some major stress on our office. We have to rethink the physical location in our home, the privacy and sound issues, and how to organize ourselves to be more efficient with our time and project planning, especially if I will be incapacitated for a bit of time. We thought issues on our progress, pitfalls and success stories in working-from-home during all these changes should be a significant focus of this spin-off blog as well. Which brings me to the issue that gives me greatest anxiety as a self-employed pregnant woman…
LACK OF PAID MATERNITY LEAVE
Paid maternity leave is dream for most working moms, and only 11% of the U.S. workforce is privileged enough to receive any at all. In fact, the U.S. is the only industrialized nation that does not mandate paid maternity leave – although not shown on this chart are clients in China must provide 12 weeks 100% paid leave for their employees. For many of us self-employed work-at-home moms and dads, unpaid leave is not even an option for us because we don’t even qualify for short-term disability. In 1995, when our oldest was born, I worked right up until I went into labor and went back to client meetings two weeks later. In 2009, when our toddler was born, Tom lost his job two weeks before I delivered but was closing our first Hazz Design project while I was in labor. I was pitching the CEO on a long term design contract about a month later. This pregnancy, I am having nightmares about being one of those women who have to deliver in the fields as they work – baby will just drop at my desk and I will have to keep on working on all the projects because there is no one else to do it! I’m just grateful there has been little to no morning sickness holding back now.
Have you thought about whether or not your consulting business can survive a health interruption like pregnancy, cancer, etc?
Tracy Hazzard | Hazz Design | Design Expert
Tracy Hazzard, a Rhode Island School of Design graduate, has been designing with husband Tom for over 20 years. More than 85% of their 200+ products & 35 patents have been commercialized, topping $500 million in retail sales for clients. Published author Tracy brings business strategy and design critique as co-host of WTFFF?! 3D Printing Podcast.