Hey Celine - tell us a bit about yourself: What do you do, how old are your children and what happens with your kids when you are at work?
I'm Celine, a sales manager and sales trainer focused on the technology industry. It's a fast paced environment and I love it! My daughter is 9 years old and we share precious time in the morning, evenings and weekends. She is picked up and dropped off by her school bus and our fabulous au-pair helps her with homework and activities until we are back from work. Overall we are blessed to have a very good balance in our work, family and social lives.
1. ONE WORD TO DESCRIBE HOW BEING A WOMO MAKES YOU FEEL?
2. WHAT’S THE FUNNIEST EXPERIENCE YOU HAVE HAD JUGGLING KIDS AND WORK?
One the of executives was munching on sweets and my eight-year-old started the conversation with a big smile and: “Sweets are bad for your teeth you know.”
3. WHAT IS THE ONE PIECE OF ADVICE YOU COULD OFFER ANOTHER WOMO?
I like the idea of growing with my child. When you grow and you are happy, that happiness becomes contagious all around you while your children grow-up. It’s both a full loop and an infinite one.
4. WHAT’S THE LEAST AMOUNT OF SLEEP YOU’VE GONE TO WORK ON AND HOW DID YOU COPE?
32 hours on my feet. One of those moments when you discover how incredibly strong a woman can be. Best coping mechanism: water (and caffeine …)
5. WHAT HAVE YOU LEARNED ABOUT YOURSELF AS A WOMO?
One weekend my daughter gave me a drawing in an envelope and asked me to hand it over to my boss. One of the characters had a speech bubble saying “Please … let my mummy come home so I can see her in the evenings.” She then asked me if I had handed over the letter and what the outcome of the discussion was. My boss agreed, yet the situation at work made it very difficult to come home early. A couple of months after, she stood in front of me, both hands on her hips and said: “Mummy, I want you to change job.”
I did and learnt to align both the passion for my work and my family, with careful planning, protected time and most importantly expectations for everyone, including myself, that are set with honesty and transparency. I chose a new role and set realistic expectations with my employer. They are awesome and I work hard to meet my objectives for them in return.
6. IF YOU HAD A WOMO ANTHEM OR MANTRA, WHAT WOULD IT BE?
Wake Up – Kick Ass – Cuddle - Repeat
7. WHAT IS YOUR GUILTY PLEASURE TO COMBAT WOMO GUILT THE BEST?
Doing any activity with my daughter (blogging, cooking, art and days out usually come out on top).
8. WOULD YOU RATHER BE DEALING WITH A TANTRUM OR PRESENTING IN A BOARD MEETING?
Board meeting presentation. Wait… Aren’t they the same?
9. IF YOU ASKED YOUR CHILD / CHILDREN WHAT YOUR JOB IS, WHAT WOULD THEY SAY (EXACT QUOTATION IF POSSIBLE)?
“My mummy is an IT Thingamajigi. She is a trainer and her office is really cool and nice and toasty warm. There is a slide and lots of games.”
10. WHAT’S THE ONE THING YOU WISH YOU’D KNOWN BEFORE YOU BECAME A WOMO?
How sleep deprived I would be in the first few months of having a baby.
11. TO DATE, WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR BEST WOMO ACHIEVEMENT?
Best one was creating a company in the Middle East centred around children’s art which allowed me to balance mum time and work drive efficiently.
Toughest one was going back to work in the UK after 8 years away in another country being self-employed and becoming a mum. Some of the recruiters rejected my CV for having been out of the UK market for so long. I persevered and within a few weeks had several offers on the table. Funny how life goes and the same recruiters were calling me to place candidates in my team 2 months later…
12. WHAT DO YOU WANT TO TEACH YOUR KIDS ABOUT WORKING MOTHERS?
Do something you love that gives you time with the ones you love.
Big thanks to Celine - our featured WoMo, and thanks to author Clare Bennett for providing our 12 "Meet the WoMos" interview questions.