Continuing the Women & Work Series today is Amy, an Associate Lecturer and mother of two. She’s recently moved across the country and so has recent experience of trying to navigate the job market for the right role.
I’m now based in Middlesbrough after having moved from the North West and I’m now working for the Open University as an Associate Lecturer.
I can’t work the unsociable hours and I can’t stay late with no notice. I also missed the informal stuff with colleagues after work which essentially means networking is lost.
While policies might be there, in reality, they are not useful. For example
Yes. There have been many occasions where I’ve had to choose career or family.
It very much depends on the organisation and the line manager.
No. Whilst they may be there on paper the realities of a gender imbalance in care is very real. This leads to opportunities being missed.
Additionally, women are judged for being career driven by other women who think they should be at home/with kids and are judged by men for not being able to give the same amount of time to work as they do.
It is obscene that women and men are still paid a different wage for the same job and having a scale within a scale allows for this.
I know of women who are child-free by choice who are paid on a lower scale point than male colleagues who do the same job.
They are also expected to take on the ‘caring’ role in the office and say yes to additional responsibilities due to their gender.
It has definitely shifted – I’ve accepted that what I saw as my career path had to change and that family would always take priority over work. But I also recognise that I am lucky to be in a position where that’s a possibility for my family without any significant changes to our way of living.
I am also lucky that I’ve managed to find work which seems to allow me to do both.
What are your thoughts on Amy’s comments? Do they ring true with you? I’d love to hear your thoughts on these issues and also get your input! If you’d like to take part in this series and add your thoughts, please do get in touch. You can tweet me or send me an email at [email protected] to get involved. Next time, we’re talking all things work-life balance with Gillian, an Associate Director.