My work as a practice specialist is half serving clients and half working on research pieces for our firm. When I got pregnant, I was worried how it would impact my work. I was pleasantly surprised that my colleagues still advocated for me to have me join projects and helped me find projects that would use my expertise well, helped me grow, and offered me flexibility, including leaving early if I was tired.
I continued to work on research, including a piece about the cost decline of renewables, which was used in our recently published report, “Global Energy Perspective”.
During my leave I received an email about a new program in Netherlands that allows new moms to come back to work one day a week for four weeks, then three days a week for six weeks. I wouldn’t have thought to do this gradual return but returning in this fashion made my transition back to work much easier.
After ten weeks of gradually ramping up, I started working 80% – usually taking Wednesdays off. On other week days, I always go home to have dinner with my family and put my daughter to bed. Occasionally, I have additional work to finish up and it’s easy to open my laptop for a bit in the evening.
The new normal
I plan to work on an 80% basis permanently. I use McKinsey’s Take Time program for extra days off on a flexible basis. For example, this week there was an important meeting about publishing the next Global Energy Perspective that I wanted to attend. I went into the office on Wednesday and will choose another day off.
I appreciate how the firm and my colleagues have gone out of their way to be supportive throughout this journey; they’ve asked how to help, created part–time opportunities on interesting engagements, and respected my needs and boundaries. I also like knowing there’s a culture of support across the firm. I have a great team, who support each other through each individual journey, so we can all be at our very best.