By Kerry Roberts
If you had asked me 15 years ago fresh out of school what I wanted to be, I would have said VP, President, Leader of the Free World (whatever it takes to climb the proverbial corporate ladder). And I worked darn hard to make it happen, for a time. Then I got married and life became about shared visions, dreams and compromise. Finally along came my 2 wonderful children and let’s face it . . . compromise shmompromise – my life became all about my kids.
For women like me – perfectionist, gen X workhorses, having children means that you can no longer put in the 14 hours a day it takes to be phenomenal in your career. Not and still have well mannered, clean, adjusted and academically excelling children (I mentioned the perfectionist thing right?). So when it came time to dust off my peep toed pumps and head back to work after my 2nd Maternity leave, my job search had an entirely different focus. Gone were things like ‘Span of influence’, ‘Managing a team’, ‘Upword Mobility’ and in it’s place I found myself wanting to be surrounded by smart people, doing something that I loved and felt challenged by, but that also let me get a nutritious dinner on the table by 6pm.
Enter Sklar Wilton and the cultural magic that this company has been able to foster and keep for 25 years. 37 talented, ambitious people whose mission it is to make clients succeed (which incidentally, they manage to do while still fuelling their passions, their home lives, their balance).
I am only one example of the company’s ability to creatively manage a successful flexible work arrangement. A year ago, my husband’s job took us to the US. While I was up for the adventure, I was reluctant to leave my career and Sklar Wilton (never mind that the idea of staying home with my two toddlers had me quaking in my boots!). So, I put a plan on paper that would let me still support my old team remotely, now as an independant contractor. Most employers would have smiled politely and booked my good-bye lunch. Not Sklar Wilton. They embraced the ability to make it work, have been fully supportive of this non-traditional arrangement and as a result I am about as happy and dedicated as any ‘remote-worker’ could ever be.
It’s got me thinking, could other companies take a lesson on resourcing? How many corner offices are filled with miserable women who would love a chance at a flexible work week to invest time in their family? How many playgrounds are filled with smart talented Moms who would love a chance to flex their thinking muscles in a flexible work arrangement? As long as the relationship between employee and employer is mutually beneficial who says we Moms can’t have it all?
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