The transition to working from home is a challenge especially as there is no boundaries between the personal space and the professional one. The new change to working remotely is especially difficult for parents, who also need to take care of their children. Here at Amazon, we see this as one of the most rewarding transitions that allows more flexibility and be closer to home while developing your career as well. How can parents remain calm while balancing life and work? We interviewed, Cynthia Secci, who shares her experience over the last two months and how Amazon supported her in this change.

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Cynthia is a Recruitment Coordinator Lead based in Luxembourg, who joined Amazon 5 years ago. Although she works from the Luxembourg Hub, she lives 40 km away from the office in France with her husband and children, aged 19 and 16. When we asked her whether she enjoys working from home, she shares, “I enjoy remote work because the commute time from my home to the office is quite long. I can easily convert the 3 hour commute in quality time for myself and my family.” Apart from being on all fronts, home schooling has been quite hectic for the family. Her children were not prepared to work on their own and needed to use digital tools that were unfamiliar. “We have had a lot of discussions to explain the dangers of COVID-19, the importance of social distancing, etc. My son is also very active and play basketball on a regular basis, so it has been a tough time for him as well to not be able to play anymore”, she shares.

On the professional front, Cynthia found that her productivity was not impaired nor impacted much. Creating the balance between her personal and professional life is important as well as taking regular breaks during the day.

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Cynthia also feels proud to work for a company that gives its employees flexibility and ownership in their work. She emphasizes that, “the messages from our leaders and the remote working tips we receive on a regular basis helps me feel supported and comfortable in this new way of working. COVID-19 has been a very stressful time for me; I was anxious to adapt to our new ways of working and taking public transportation to go to the office. Working from home helped me feel secured, safe and reduced my fear. I am also extremely happy to see how we work together as a team and as a company remotely over the last few months. No one was prepared for this pandemic, but the way we have adapted our working styles to it makes me very proud to work for Amazon.”

We asked Cynthia whether she had any tips for parents working from home in order to balance their professional and personal lives. She emphasizes that, individuals, regardless of whether they are parents or not, should ensure that they make time for everything.

The dangers of working from home every day is to lose control and becoming completely addicted to our laptops. My family is my top priority, and even though my kids are not very young, they still need a lot of attention.

We, lastly, asked Cynthia what she misses from the pre-lockdown period, to which she responded, “One thing I already miss is the time I spent with my son outdoors. We enjoyed walking and working out together.” Then she adds, “Time is flying and teenagers are slowly standing out from their parents. These last few months that we have spent together as a family have been really rewarding. It almost felt like time had slowed down and that I had the chance to appreciate these moments together as well”.