Eight months ago, I applied for a new job as “Mum-To-Be”. My first release will be around Christmas Day, plus or minus two weeks. I’m hoping for a calm and smooth release instead of the “big bang” kind we see all too often on software projects. If the release goes well, I will be promoted to “full-time Mum” (part-timers need not apply).
“It’s a 24/7 job for life regardless of whether or not you have a day job. Are you sure you’re ready for this level of commitment and this kind of responsibility?” asked the Quiet Voice in my head to which my Heart and Mind both replied, “We’ll do our best.”
The Magical Role of Mum
Given the importance of the role of Mum (and of course the equally important role of Dad), you’d think there would be a definitive parent job description, complete with responsibilities, skills, qualifications and attributes clearly laid out and readily available to everyone.
Only it turns out that parenting is one of the most controversial topics you’ll ever stumble upon, be it in the playground or by the water cooler at work. And no such definitive parent job description exists.
A Case of the Vital Vacancy
That’s when I decide to apply my hard-learned principle of “Use what I know”. I know I want to do a good job and since motivation is key to a job well done, I look to Dan Pink’s theory on motivation (aka drive) for inspiration. According to Dan, developing and maintaining motivation requires three vital ingredients. Dan gives a compelling talk on Ted.com on the theory.
- Autonomy – Be self-directing
- Mastery – Improve continuously
- Purpose – Serve something beyond our own needs
After all, life’s a marathon not a sprint. Sustaining good performance is equally as important as attaining a level of good performance in the first place.
Words from the Wise
But there’s no need to take a wannabee’s word for the real deal when it comes to parenting. Here’s what my parenting friends tell me:
“You’re going to learn at the fastest rate since you yourself was a child. Fasten your seatbelt and enjoy the ride!”
“Hope you enjoy every second! It is an amazing adventure. It won’t be easy, but it will be rewarding.”
“We’ll miss you a lot – looking forward to hearing how Agile works with kids!”
“You’re going to have more fun than you can possibly imagine!”
“Forget about 2-week sprints. Prepare for 2-hour sprints day… and night!”
“Hope the release goes according to plan!”