Career woman & a mum– the best of both worlds!
A career at Cloudbooking allows me to be there for my boys, as well as keep my career on track.
Giving up a career to be a stay at home mum after having my second child, seemed like a natural thing to do in 2013. I felt that I had missed out on my eldest child’s early years, because I’d tried to carry on working. I knew that I didn’t want to have the same regrets with my second.
Having studied Hotel and Catering at University, I had high hopes of staying in the hotel industry for a long time. I soon realised that in order to keep progressing up the ranks, I would have to surrender my social life and resign myself to the fact that I would probably be working 12-14 hour shifts; sacrificing my weekends in order to be successful. This was not a sacrifice I wanted to make, and I made the decision of quitting my job, and then temping for a few months while I decided what to do next.
A change of direction
I then joined Domestic & General, a company I stayed with for 14 years, working in IT Technical support. It was in a really enjoyable role, and with it being a small team, I felt an integral part of the company. Even though management changed over the years, people did remember contribution in times of crisis and times of extraordinary projects that we pulled off.
This is also where I met my husband and had my first child. I’d relocated to the East Midlands at this point and when I had our first son. I knew that after my nine months’ maternity were up, I’d return to work. I had negotiated for three days in the office and two days at home, so my little boy went to nursery three days a week.
When our second child came along, we had a difficult decision to make. I felt like I had missed out somewhat with our first son and didn’t want to have the same regrets with my youngest.
We decided to take the nine months’ maternity leave and then look at the situation. At the time it was possible for me to stay at home with the two boys. The eldest was just starting primary school. It was almost an ideal time, as I could still do school runs and look after the youngest one. We decided it would be nice for me to stay at home and have a slightly different experience with our youngest.
Returning to work
However, skip forward a few years and our youngest has started reception. My husband and I, therefore, sat down and had the discussion about what I wanted to do next. I said I’d like to get a local job, but I hadn’t investigated anything at that point. I then saw a job advert for Cloudbooking. When I showed it to my husband he encouraged me to apply, as he thought I would be perfect for it.
If I didn’t apply, I’d kick myself. But I also accepted that if I didn’t get the job, it was okay.
The best decision
Getting the job has been the best thing that could have happened to my career. It has confirmed in my mind that going back to work was the right thing for me. Also, it helps that I went back to the right job, using my skills gained from my previous employment.
“Now I have the best of both worlds. I am doing work that stimulates my mind and uses the valuable skills that I have learned in my career. It gives me the flexibility to do the school runs and be there for my family.”
Every day is very different at Cloudbooking, which is nice. Now I have the best of both worlds. I am doing work that stimulates my mind and uses the valuable skills that I have learned in my career. It gives me the flexibility to do the school runs and be there for my family. I can be there to cook dinner for the boys, and am not wasting 3 hours a day commuting to the office, which is wasted time. Instead, I can plan meals and do my online food shop. The boys are bit older now, so they keep themselves entertained while mum finishes work, but I am always there if they need me. They don’t feel like things are any different, as they still see me as much as they would have done before.
“I don’t need to have that physical construct of an office to be an efficient employee.”
Working for Cloudbooking has shown me that I don’t need to have that physical construct of an office to be an efficient employee. We are very much a team. Even though we are miles apart, and I think it forces us to communicate with each other more. I probably speak to my colleagues just as much now, as I did when I was in an office.
I also feel I have a contribution to make to the team. You get recognition and are valued for what you do. You don’t always get in other companies, big or small. Having got to know the role, I am amazed at how nice people are, both internally and externally. Out of the people that contact us, we rarely get negativity, there’s always a friendly vibe. I think this is testament to the relationship that Cloudbooking has with its customers and the quality of the solutions that it offers.
“You get recognition and are valued for what you do. You don’t always get that in other companies, big or small.”
I finally feel that I can have the career I want, and also spend quality time with my family. I hope that more companies take note! A woman can have a career and be a mother – I am proof of that.