Catherine's blog: The holy grail

Flexible working conditions while maintaining career trajectory – we talk about it all time and it can often seem like the Holy Grail – a tricky quest that I for one have often wondered does it really exist.

But following a recent catch-up with a friend my spirits were lifted! Due to my moving location we hadn’t had a proper get together in some time and it turned out there was quite a lot to catchup on. When I moved my friend was just come through a marriage breakup which had come on top of a career move that proved to be disastrous in terms of support and flexibility when their first child was born and, needless to say prospects were not good for any career progression.

Fast forward 5 years and I hardly recognised my friend! A new relationship and a new job with a company that could clearly see the talent they were getting, and a company that fully embraced flexible working with career progression. She has even been promoted shortly before taking maternity leave!  I was truly blown away by the whole new level of confidence I could see, and it was clear to see the win-win for everyone in this situation (Yes I was also openly jealous and shamelessly enquired as to how I could get my CV to land on the right desk!!)  

Of course it wasn’t all ‘perfect’ – with promotion comes increased responsibility and flexibility often has to work both ways. So there is lots of juggling and plenty of stress as part of everyday life, but she also has the other Holy Grail - the family support network nearby for extra childcare on those emergency days. Something we gave up when we moved and have definitely questioned the wisdom of that ever since!

However with renewed vigour my quest continues knowing that yes, somewhere out there it just might exist afterall….

Catherine has worked in financial services for 20 years. She has two boys ages 9 and 7. 

 

Category: A Citymother's Diary

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