As a father of two and a self-proclaimed “Seasonal Stay at Home Dad” (I am a teacher 10 months of the year), I am challenged daily to not only balance my work and home life, but also to be successful at both. That’s why I immensely enjoyed Scott Behson’s book The Working Dad’s Survival Guide: How to Succeed at Work and at Home.
A lot of times when you pick up a book and you see “PhD” after the author’s name, you collide with an infusion of highbrow prose that may “say a lot” yet mean little to you. Behson keeps it real, though, and speaks to the reader in a manner that is neither demeaning nor superficial. What adds to the personal touch of the book is that it includes multiple personal accounts from other dads also trying to succeed while shouldering this delicate balance of two important worlds.
Behson does not lecture at you. He weaves personal anecdotes with those of other dads, research and (something that should not be underestimated) worksheets that help to truly illuminate the challenges and resources of being a working dad.
What I also enjoyed was the organization of the book. There are three sections: “Setting Work and Life Priorities” (I mean how can you be successful without examining what your priorities are/should be?), “Success at Work” and “Success at Home.”
There are many components of the book that deserve further inspection – finance, workplace flexibility, paternity leave, career management, protecting family time, etc. However, the chapter before the conclusion of the book is all about “Building Your Fatherhood Network.” Obviously, as a City Dads Group member, I was delighted to see this chapter (which includes words from our co-founders Matt Schneider and Lance Somerfeld). Amongs all the other aspects of being a working dad, this is one area that is often ignored by dads. We network professionally so why not fatherly? (Editor’s Note: The book’s author Scott Behson is a member of the NYC Dads Group.)
All, in all, Behson’s book is worth the read. It is designed, as Behson tells you at the beginning, to be read in pieces if need be. You can also find the worksheets referenced in the book online. I would recommend this book to new working dads, veteran working dads, and any dad in between. It might also be a valuable resource for spouses of working dads.
For more information about Scott and his book The Working Dad ’s Survival Guide: How to Succeed at Work and at Home, be sure to check out his website.