I’m a part-time working mum, but things are about to change.
Since going back to work over two years ago, I’ve been working four days week, with Wednesdays being my day off with Georgia.
It’s been lovely.
But as I said, things are going to change.
You see, I have been offered a new job. But it was the hardest decision I’ve had to take with my career.
Comfort or progression…
In my current job, I’m comfortable. Perhaps too comfortable – I’ve been there a while and I know what I’m doing. There’s a lot to be said for comfort when it comes to having a family to provide for.
I’m also pretty damn good at my job.
I love the people that I work with and I’ve grown and thrived over the past five years. I’ve been allowed to come up with my own ideas and follow them through. Some of them worked and some of them are passed off as ‘learning experiences’.
But five years is a long time and I felt I was ready to start looking around.
Deciding to go full time
Before deciding that I wanted a new job, I first had to come to terms with the simple fact that there wouldn’t be any part time positions available.
They’re like gold dust and unless you’re already in a role, it’s almost impossible to find a part time role.
So, I did the math (I used my budget spreadsheet to forecast) to work out what salary I’d be happy with to go back full time.
Sure, I’d be spending less time with Georgia on a Wednesday, but I’d also be able to provide more for my family to be able to be a little more comfortable.
It was a hard decision. I’d suggest anybody in similar circumstances to weigh up the pros and cons for their family.
It’s easy to feel stuck in a job. For stability. For the knowledge that the unknown new employer may not be flexible enough. For the knowledge that you get to spend more time with your family if you work part-time.
A lot of mother’s I know give up their careers to spend more time with their family and here’s me looking for the opposite.
But the truth? It’s the right decision for MY family and for me. I’m not everybody else, I’m just me.
It doesn’t make me any less of a mother to want the best for my family, to want to progress my career.
Flexible new role
What I didn’t count on is my new employers being really flexible.
I asked before the interview whether the role was full time or whether they’d consider a part time role, to be answered with a straight forward ‘it’s a full time role’.
Okay, I thought. At least I know what I’m up against.
But at the interview, he brought it up. We talked about how Georgia is the centre of my life (obviously we also covered whether I know what I’m talking about for the role, but I don’t think you’re interested in seeing my presentation).
And actually? He didn’t frown or shy away from it. In fact he fought for it. He said that having a family and being family centred fits in with the business really well.
Although they can’t reduce my hours as they have too much work to do – or more accurately, I now have a lot of work to do – they are being flexible about it and being led by me.
After all, I had come to terms with working full time before even applying.
So, we’ve decided that I’m going to work one day from home a week.
They’ve obviously read up on Mother Pukka’s Flex appeal.
I’m really sad to be leaving my current work family and telling my boss was one of the hardest things I’ve had to do.
It actually makes me quite upset to think about, but equally, I’m really proud of myself for having the courage to move on. To find something that’s really exciting for me.
Just because I’m sad to be leaving, I’m so excited about what’s around the corner for me.
So, the morale of this story is to be brave and stick to what you believe in.
To work out what you want and to be brave enough to make that jump.