I work for a big corporate firm in the City of London, and while it’s much trendier to slate the ‘fat cats’ and all their trappings of City life I’d like to show my appreciation for it. You see I’ve worked in the City since I was cut a very lucky break at eighteen years old, it’s where I grew up. I loved the vibe and thrill of being among it all when I was younger, and could not imagine my earlier career being anything other than what it was.
When I was made redundant (along with hundreds of others) at the end of my first maternity leave my ex-boss put me in touch with a school friend of hers who was looking for a job share partner. The two of us hit it off immediately, and after getting through the interview stages with necessary managers and HR I was hired. I started work a few weeks before my 5yo turned one, which meant I’d had the luxury of a 13 month maternity break, and was more than ready for the challenge of becoming a part time working mum. The job was better paid than my previous one was, and the new arrangement meant only working two days a week instead of the three I had originally planned to.
In the four years and three months that I’ve been working here I have always felt valued by my boss, and the wider team. I get paid well and I get great benefits. I’ve taken maternity leave twice and have never been made to feel bad about it. I’ve been allowed to trial working from home, because my manager appreciates that childcare costs would cripple me if I had to tack on the additional hours to cover the commute. When he called me at home a few weeks after my baby boy was born to tell me the results of my yearly review he said something that will always stick in my head: ‘we are nothing without good people working for us’.
Working in any capacity with small children is bloody difficult, but sometimes you have to count your blessings and know where your bread is buttered. While the photo above is a good representation of what my early workday mornings look like, I know that I’m so very lucky to have been given this opportunity.
What’s your work situation? Do you feel valued? I’d love to hear from you in the comments section…