Because running a business isn’t exciting enough, you’ve decided to have a kid. Now what?
Trey Meyers was an agent in the music industry for a long time and ended up starting his own entertainment production company — Turnipblood Entertainment — that focused on throwing big budget sorority and fraternity parties, mostly in the Southeast and Texas. Today, his business has expanded to include weddings, concerts, travel services, and more. He’s a man constantly on the move and recently he’s had learn to do it all with two sons under three years old in tow.
So, how does he do it? Well, at first, he didn’t. Myers stays ineffably grateful for his wife and her ability to hold everything together as he learned the ins and outs of being a businessman and a family man at the same time; without her support, he says, nothing would be possible. We talked about what they found out along the way.
One thing Myers shared was the importance of acting as a child-rearing team with your spouse or partner (if you’re a single parent, this is more difficult).
“It’s all about the division of labor. You need to assign roles for each other, otherwise I think it can lead to frustration and infighting with your spouse,” Myers says. “You don’t want to be fighting with them to get up and get the kids dressed while you go to work, because some days you do that and some days you don’t. Those roles need to be determined beforehand so you’re not trying to figure it out in the middle of a fight.”
He went on to talk about the importance of giving one another some relief. For example, if one person handles more of the day-to-day childcare during the week, it’s important to provide that person with some dedicated personal time over the weekend so they can be fully recharged when they’re back on duty.
Time is the Master
Myers says that learning time-management skills is a higher-stakes game when you have kids, since inefficiency at work directly translates into lost time with your children.
“The days of waking up and working all day and night, grinding to get it done, are over,” he says. “If I have to pick up the kids at daycare at 3:30, I have to figure out how to do in seven hours what, three years ago, I did in 10 hours.”
To this end, Myers is a big proponent of “time blocking,” a concept developed by Gary Keller (of real estate behemoth Keller Williams) in his book, The One Thing. The basic idea behind time blocking is that you should complete one task at a time, and that task should be something that makes subsequent tasks either easier or unnecessary.
Myers also uses an app called Trello in order to create a system of three separate lists of things to do: five things to do that day (in order of importance), a larger list of things to do that week and lastly, a list of bigger things to do “not this week.” Once he knocks off everything he has to do in a day, he’ll address some of the stuff from the “this week” list, provided he has time to do so before he gets on child-duty.
“It’s a template for my week I build out every Sunday, and what I’ve found is that by the end of the week, I’ll look at some of the stuff from the ‘not this week’ category, and it’s no longer relevant. It either worked itself out, someone else did it, or it was never important in the first place,” Myers says.
“If you’re intentional with your time, then you can free up time to be with your kids. But you have to block your time to do so.”
The last bit of advice is some wisdom Myers gained from a mistake he made early on. “I used to think that I had to micromanage every single thing in my company, when in fact I should have let people fail or succeed, but either way I was only enabling them by micromanaging their work and stealing my time away from my family,” he says.
He went on to say that if he can pay someone to do a task he doesn’t have to do himself, he does.
“I have a rule that if I don’t have to put shoes on when I’m at work, then that was a good day, because it meant that I didn’t have to leave my office,” Myers says. “Everything that someone else can do in my office, I let them do it, because all I need to be doing is focusing on things that nobody else can do. And some of those things are picking up my kids, or coming home to be with one of them if they’re sick.”
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