This Thursday, April 27, 2017, is National Take Your Child to Work Day (TYCTWD) in the United States. At exaqueo, we always talk about bringing your Whole Self to work, and here’s an instance where your work life and personal life really can blend together. In our research, it’s no surprise that spending time with family is one of the most cited things people do outside of work. While the main purpose of the day is to expose children to different career opportunities, it is also a great way to engage working parents (and the rest of the office) in a meaningful way.
As you gear up for Thursday, here are some tips on how to help the day be as engaging as possible -- for both parents and children alike. These tips come from experienced HR leaders, parents and kids, too!
1) Showcase on Social Media: TYCTWD is a great opportunity to showcase your workplace via social media, but do get permission from parents first. Provide a photo release that includes parental signature for minors. Some parents may not want their child's name or image used externally, so it’s important to ask before you post.
2) Provide Nut-free Snacks: Go nut free with snacks. Food allergies affect roughly one in every 13 American kids -- so take extra precaution to read labels, and have tree nut and peanut free lunches and snacks.
3) Go Big on the Meals: Everyone remembers food, especially kids. And it doesn’t take much to please a kid. Ice cream socials, BBQs, picnics and pizza parties are sure to be a big hit.
4) Create a Future Employee Sign: Here’s a personal favorite: Make an oversized photo frame that says, "Future [company] employee” (or whatever nickname you have for your employees) and then take pictures of each child inside the frame. It’s something they’re used to in the Instagram era, a nice keepsake for parents, and additional social media content for you, too!
5) Share the Company Pride: This can be a big deal for kids, it’s totally out of their routine and they may be witnessing the professional lives of their parents for the first time. If you can swing it, share some logo-swag in a goody bag, such as t-shirts, hats, pens, etc.
6) Remember Different Family Types: Recognize that many children are being raised by family members, so consider this when communicating to employees. It may not just be daughters and sons -- but nieces, nephews and grandchildren, too.
7) Allow for Time to Learn: I shared a lot of fun things to keep kids entertained, but make sure to include time for them to job shadow their family member and see what the company is all about. After all, it’s the whole reason they are there! This doesn’t necessarily mean having them sit in on a boring teleconference, but maybe tour the facility, interact with the product or talk to different department leaders. These types of activities are great ways to engage non-parents as well and involve them throughout the day.
Tell us more: What have you seen in your companies as effective ways to engage parents, kids and your employees? We want to hear about it!
Lexi Gordon (@LexiDGordon) is the COO and a Principal Employer Brand Strategist at exaqueo, an employer brand experience firm building employer brands and the talent strategies that drive them through research, consulting, and creative and digital execution. Contact exaqueo to learn more about our employer brand innovation, workforce research and recruiting strategy offerings.