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Bugaboo's General Manager of North America Shares Her Productivity Hacks for Working Parents Jeanelle Teves sits down with Jessica Abo to discuss her productivity hacks for busy moms and dads.

By Jessica Abo

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Jeanelle Teves is the General Manager of North America at Bugaboo, where she leads the future growth strategy and is passionate about empowering new parents. Before joining Bugaboo, she spent nearly a decade at Nike where she worked on campaigns such as the first launch of wearable technology Nike+ FuelBand, London Olympics, Paris Fashion Week and Women's World Cup. Today she has secured partnerships with the TODAY Show, GRAMMY Awards, and many celebrity parents-to-be. She sat down with Jessica Abo to discuss what's on the horizon for Bugaboo and her parental advice for moms and dads looking to be more productive.

Jessica Abo: Jeanelle, whether we have our own children or we take care of other people's children, we have a lot of moving parts when we're dealing with little people. Tell us a little bit about your day-to-day life as a working mom and at Bugaboo.

Every day looks different! In the morning, I could be meeting with my Amsterdam-based headquarters team where we talk about future innovation concepts and where I provide my feedback. And in the afternoon, I'll be working with my U.S.-based team on business results. Outside of this, I am also a mom to two young children, a five-year-old and a two-year-old, and it is so important to me that I'm present for them. My partner is a stay-at-home dad, and we don't have any childcare support, so we work together to align our priorities and time so that I can show up at Bugaboo and for my family.

What does that look like for you starting from the time you wake up in the morning?

I find it helpful to begin my day by writing, what are the three biggest priorities? And I just ask myself the question, what is going to move the needle? I ask myself this question before diving into any week. Then, I communicate those priorities to my inner circle. Every Sunday evening, I have a meeting with my partner and we review those three priorities for our family. Every Monday morning, I have a meeting with my leadership team and we review the three business priorities. That way everyone around me is united on time, energy and dollars invested, and together we are stronger.

When it comes to the office, what have been some of the biggest wins to date?

When I first joined the company, I was returning to work after just having my son, Maximilian. I was in the very fresh newborn stage and feeding him around the clock. And I'm pretty sure that in my first one-on-ones, my teammates could hear the breast pump going. It became really clear to me at that moment that I wanted to be able to create a flexible company culture and updated policies that live our brand purpose: to empower parents in the workplace. Since then, we have modernized our employee handbook to support families. We've extended maternity and paternity care, incorporated reproductive financial support, initiated flexible working hours and half-day wellness Fridays. To be in a position that creates change in the workforce is something that I am deeply proud of.

And what are some of the biggest accomplishments that you've had as a mom?

I have found tactics to blend business and family, and feel fully present for my children in the best way that I can. For me, that means giving my full self to my family in the morning. So I am not there throughout the entire day, but I am fully present in the morning. I make my kids a balanced and healthy breakfast. I sit down with them with a cup of coffee and we talk about what my kindergartner is going to be doing that day. I talk to my preschooler about what his day's going to look like, and I am fully there. And then when I leave for the office, I'm on, I'm in work mode. That is the best that I can do and I protect those mornings.

I love that. It's almost like you have a morning meeting with your kids, which is amazing. When you think about work mode and you look ahead to 2023, what are some of the things that are on the horizon for the brand?

We have just announced our Push to Zero Campaign, which is our ESG commitment to be carbon footprint net-zero by 2035. What does that mean? From materials and fabrics to sourcing and finishing, every element of our strollers is thoughtfully considered to create a long-lasting product and to reduce its impact on the planet as much as possible. As part of this commitment, as of this year, our strollers will be made with bio-based materials.

What are some of the productivity hacks that you can share with other working parents?

My favorite productivity hack is to find your biological prime time. Everyone has it. This is when you are sharpest and you feel like you have a spark of energy and focus part of that time on yourself. So for me, that is early in the morning, first thing when I wake up and I begin every day with a morning routine that sets me up and I swear by it. I wake up at 5:00 am, again, this is what works for me, and the first thing that I do is reach down and I grab my journal, which is next to my bed, and I write down what I am grateful for.

I drink a ton of water, which is also there right by my bed. And I do a really simple workout. It doesn't have to be complicated. I work out for 25 minutes and just move my body. From then, I usually have about 30 minutes where I can set up my workday and really write down those three priorities that I want to tell my team before it's time to get my kids up. And then I am fully with my kids. Filling my cup first, allows me to be extra productive and then give to everyone else for the rest of my day.

Finally, what do you want to say to the parents out there who might be feeling that guilt of, "I'm at the office, but I want to be with my kids," or, "I'm with my kids, but I still have all of this work to do"?

Sometimes when it's really overwhelming and you feel like you have a lot to do, you have a lot at your desk, you have a lot going on at home. How can you just be 1% better? How can you be a 1% better teammate? How can you be a 1% better manager? 1% better mom? Those things that at the moment seem to make no difference added up, make a profound change over time. I love the concept of marginal gains.

Jessica Abo

Entrepreneur Leadership Network® Contributor

Media Trainer, Keynote Speaker, and Author

Jessica Abo is a sought-after media trainer, award-winning journalist and best-selling author. Her client roster includes medical and legal experts, entrepreneurs, small business owners, startup founders, C-Suite executives, coaches, celebrities and philanthropists. Visit www.jessicaabo.com.

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