Family Friendly

The last year, I’ve been inundated in newsletters, social media and general web-surfing with article after article on small business culture: what’s new, what are others doing, what not to do. My boss is game for all of it. She probably reads every single one of these articles to ensure that Heckenkemper stays on top of offering a happy, flexible work environment. And while I love a lot of the perks of working at a small business (especially one that actually implements many of the suggestions in the above-mentioned articles), there’s only really one that matters: family.

Our office is family friendly, period. While I think a lot of places say that, none walks the walk like Heckenkemper. Not only do I have total flexibility if my kids are sick or have a class party or doctor’s appointment, but they are welcome here every single day. Let that soak in for a minute…kids, at the office, any time. To some that might sound insane. But our office thrives on this! These are our kids, our little people, if they aren’t happy and taken care of, we aren’t focused (or aren’t working!).


From day 1, it’s been take care of you and your family first then deal with work. This isn’t just an attitude but a value here. We’ve got whiteboards galore for coloring or playing school, Netflix on the big TV, snacks, plenty of floor space to run, nooks for taking naps…our kids love it. But more importantly, they are here and we are getting work done! Sure, there may be more breaks for dealing with bathroom runs or opening snacks but in the end, we are still getting more done than if we were sidelined at home.

If your office isn’t currently family friendly, give it real consideration. The point of life is not to work, it’s to enjoy family and friends. If you happen to LOVE what you do or LOVE where you work, that’s a great bonus. Making sure employees are happy and fulfilled is going to get so much more done for your business. And my guess is that starting with family is probably the number one item on most employees lists.

Claire Lemaster