Some of the many great things about mystery shopping is that you can pick and choose the assignments you want to work on, and you can bring your friends or family members along with you while you work on many of those assignments. You can earn money while you chat away with a good friend at a coffee shop assignment, and you can earn money while you go grocery shopping with the kids if you pick the right assignments. The flexibility of mystery shopping assignments often inspires stay-at-home parents as well as working parents who want to earn extra income on the side to pick up assignments while their kids are in tow. While this sounds like a great idea, it is not always the most advisable plan of action.
The Effects of Distractions
As a parent, you know first-hand just how distracting your kids can be. They may interrupt you while you are talking, try to garner your attention while you are on the phone, start bickering with each other while you are watching TV and more. You certainly love your kids dearly, but they require a great deal of your attention on a regular basis. Mystery shopping assignments are very detail-oriented. Your entire reason for being at a specific location and completing an assignment is to make observations on everything from the cleanliness of the facility to the friendliness of the employees. Consider how much attention you can pay to your assignment when your kids are talking to you, arguing with each other and repeatedly stating how bored they are.
The Value of Your Time
Because mystery shopping with kids can result in additional distractions that you otherwise would not have, you may be inclined to spend even more time in a specific location to ensure that you completed all of the tasks that were required of you. If you are like most mystery shoppers, you keep a close eye on how much money you earn per assignment in comparison to how much time that assignment took you to complete. The value of your time is worth a great deal, but you will find that your ability to maximize your profits when shopping with kids is diminished simply because the assignments will take you longer to complete.
The Quality of Your Work
While some very conscientious mystery shoppers have the incredible ability to pay attention to the details of their site visit such as the time you entered the store, the names of the employees you talked to and more even while breaking up arguments between your kids and wrangling them in when they wander too far, most mystery shoppers lack such super-human skills. The bottom line is that if your attention is divided, you may be missing out on specific details of the site visit, forgetting about certain requirements in the assignment guidelines and more. There is a very real possibility that the quality of your work may suffer as a result.
If you are a parent, mystery shopping with kids can be a perk. After all, there are very few jobs that will allow you to bring your kids to work with you! However, because of the reasons noted, you should consider only mystery shopping with your kids when you have no other options. In many cases, it is best to keep your kids at home and focus on your assignments.