There’s no doubt that mothers love their children fiercely, but it’s no secret that many women with kids reach a place in their lives where they want to return to work. As a mother, you may have felt cooped up in your own home the last couple of years, or maybe it’s always been your plan to return to work—whatever it is, you’re not alone! Many mothers feel similarly, and thankfully, today’s society provides a variety of routes to pursue your dreams while raising toddlers at the same time.
This may surprise you, but as a mom, you’ve cultivated many of the skills you will need to return to the workforce. A career in human resources is a particularly great fit for mothers, as the top skills required for this type of job are already present in your daily duties.
We used real-time business intelligence from Burning-Glass.com to identify the top five skills mentioned in human resources-related job postings over the past 12 months.* If you can’t imagine how reading bedtime stories to a 3-year-old at night or budgeting for diapers each month makes you a great candidate for a human resources career, take a look at the following skills that show how prepared you already are!
1. Employee relations
In a human resources position, the ability to cultivate relationships with people is one of the most important skills you can have under your belt. Lucky for you, being a mother is about one of the most relational roles you could ever fill. Soothing a worried kindergartener after a nightmare or coaxing your toddler to eat all of his mashed banana takes a certain kind of expertise. With your caring calmness and relational intuitiveness, you’re probably able to predict your child’s needs before he or she even knows they exist!
As a human resources professional, you’ll be working relationally with employees to help train them into their positions, delegate and connect them to the proper resources, take requests about salary and benefits, and help them through various other office issues. Good relationships with the employees you work with is key, and the way you’ve learned to develop that with your kids will give you an advantage against those who haven’t been spending all their free time caring for others.
An important part of human resource work is recruiting other employees. If you’re worried that you don’t have this skill because you’ve never recruited other staff members before, don’t fear! As a mother you’ve probably done more convincing, bargaining, negotiating and persuading than the average person just to get your child into bed at 8 p.m.
Not only can you coax a kid to her crib, blankie and teddy bear in hand, but you’ve probably also mastered the art choosing who you trust to care for your child. Between babysitters and play dates, sifting through candidates to care for your babies will pay off in spades.
Human resources professionals often filter through job applications and are key in helping choose the right employee for the right position. Conducting interviews, looking through portfolios, weeding out the bad applications while leaving the good ones and practicing wise decision-making are all abilities you’ve mastered as a mother.
When it comes to having kids, every mom knows that scheduling is central to raising a family. From doctor appointments to ballet lessons to planning times for Joey and the neighbor kids to go to the library together, scheduling has probably been a crucial part of your life since you decided to start having children—even before they were born! Not only are you already skilled at this type of planning and timing, you’re probably proficient at scheduling for multiple people in your family—all at the same time!
In many human resources careers, scheduling is a primary task. Having a brain that is great at accurately organizing multiple schedules at once and is already adept at paying attention to the details will put you miles ahead of other applicants vying for that same position. While scheduling is something that each person has to deal with in his or her life, it’s clear that some people are better at it than others. If you’re organized, detail-oriented and have finally conquered the feat of not double booking yourself, you could excel in human resources.
4. Human resource management
As a mother, you often oversee mealtimes, bath times, snack times, how and when your kids do their homework and bed times—among a host of other things. You’ve probably become a master at cooking macaroni and cheese while feeding the dog, strategically planning your child’s education with your husband and playing mediator when your kids are fighting.
According to the Bureau Labor of Statistics, human resource managers help govern and oversee the administrative duties at an organization. They may interview and hire people, and depending on the company, they may be responsible for supervising many of the administrative staff. Since you’ve already accomplished managing a family in your years of being a mother, moving into a human resources management position could really be a piece of cake.
5. Administrative support
Balancing the checkbook, keeping track of your family’s calendar and checking your kids’ grades online are probably all monthly, or even daily, occurrences. Maybe you plan the vacations, shop for classroom supplies and order school supplies, too. These small but crucial tasks are what make your family’s world go ‘round. Without your help in these areas, it’s safe to say that things could fall apart.
Employees working in human resources generally shoulder the administrative duties at an organization. Without these hardworking individuals, the company would cease to operate and exist at a functional level. Your experience in accomplishing administrative tasks as a mom has primed you for this portion of a human resources career!
Does this sound like you?
While these are just a few of the human resources skills that you’ve naturally mastered as a mother, know that there are a host of others at which you’re sure to excel. And remember, no matter what career you choose to go into, there will always be a process of training and a safe place to ask the questions you might have as you learn the ropes of a new job.
Do the above skills sound like something you possess? Are you interested in learning more about pursuing a degree in human resources? Visit Rasmussen College’s human resources degree page to learn more about program highlights, earnings data and other interesting facts. Put those mommy skills to the test, and know that you’ll be able to make a difference in the world by pursuing this type of career!
*Source: Burning-Glass.com (Analysis of 280,988 human resources job postings, Nov. 28, 2012 – Nov. 25, 2013)