Former PA Nicky signed up for our Back to Work course on a cold and rainy autumn day.
Disheartened by a lengthy job search, the mum-of-two felt far from optimistic. But, as she reveals here, it took just a sprinkling of Successful Mums magic and a little social media savvy to drive the clouds away.
“I worked for a leading publisher for about 20 years, commuting every day and ending up as PA to the managing director, which was quite a big job. After my children were born, I didn’t want to return to that life. I wanted to work, though, so I did lots of little things, like Avon and invigilating at a school at exam time, to fit around my family. But after 14 years, I was ready for something more.
When Jane Knight talked about finding a flexible job you love, I’ll admit I was a bit cynical because I’d been looking for a good part-time job for a really long time! My kids were 12 and 14 and both at secondary school, so I had a bit more freedom. But I still wanted something local and flexible that would give me time with them but also let me get back to work properly, earn some money and do something for myself.
“As a mum, you feel guilty if you stay at home and you feel guilty if you go out to work – but now I have a really good balance“
Georgina, my 1 to 1 coach, was my sounding board. We have similar backgrounds, our kids are the same ages and we really hit it off. She gave me loads of advice and one of the things we talked about was using social media to look for work.
I was on LinkedIn, although I didn’t really know how to use it properly, and Georgina suggested that I put a line on there to say that I was looking for flexible work. It was a simple thing that I hadn’t considered before … but it worked! Someone I knew got in touch straight away about a part-time job she was offering – it was a real “right time, right place” sort of thing.
Social media is all about networking at the end of the day and that old adage of “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know” rings true. I got the job and I’m now working two days a week as an admin recruiter and really enjoying it.
It’s nice to do something for myself, to be able to bring some money into the family and still get enough time with my kids. As a mum, you feel guilty if you stay at home and you feel guilty if you go out to work – but now I have a really good balance.”
For more brilliant Back to Work advice and support, book your funded place on our course today – and banish those job-hunting blues for good!