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Advice from Working Mums

  1. #17
    lisa88 is offline Registered User
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    I'm a full time working mum and have struggled with the fact that I have to/ought to forget my ambitious side. I work for a very traditional HK company and which does not have great benefits or family-friendly policies. I was very lucky to have landed this job when pregnant - I joined them in my last trimester. The job itself has turned out not the right fit for me - not challenging and practically zero advancement prospects. Because I am able to do the job with my eyes shut, I get to leave work on time and have very few work obligations outside of work hours. If not for my baby (almost one), I would have moved on. Recruiters started calling me when i returned from maternity leave (???) and I re-live this dilemma each time I get a call. My friends in the high-flying jobs that I aspire to tell me frankly that they have very little time for their children, which admittedly sounds unattractive. My priority at this time is my baby, but honestly, is it possible to have it all: career and baby??

  2. #18
    thanka2 is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheQuasimother View Post
    I do make sure that my child and I have special moments together. He knows the days and refers to them as mummy and ... days. These moments are so precious to me. My colleague who has grown up with a working mum had days like that too with his mum and he said that those days/moments have carried on from when he was little. So imagine the future... your children and you... when they're teenagers, adults... continuing this tradition with you not because you want but because they want to. This keeps me going.
    I hadn't thought of that but this really encourages me. Thanks for sharing. Every opportunity can be one for a memory, right?

  3. #19
    thanka2 is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by lisa88 View Post
    My priority at this time is my baby, but honestly, is it possible to have it all: career and baby??
    I think with some careers, it's not possible to "have it all"--if you want to do right by your family (i.e. be intimately involved in your childrens' lives). As some have pointed out--HK is definitely not the most family-friendly city in the world. So, the high flying corporate careers that require you to invest blood, sweat and tears in order to climb the ladder (which are many here in HK) probably aren't your best bet if you want a career. Having said that, I think there is always a way if you're creative to get most of what you want--and sometimes that means changing what you want. :)

  4. #20
    helywong is offline Registered User
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    This thread is really interesting as I am a new mommy with a 3mth old baby. I have returned to my full time job working as Compliance in banking and I kept on thinking if i should continue the full time work as I really miss my little one.

    As many of you already reveals, being a full time working mom is difficult to juggle between work and family. It is also my thought to work part time but it is really a difficult task exp in the banking sector.
    I am also wondering where/any channels to get part time work which i can spend more time with my baby as well as not requiring to quit job forever, even it is not a bank related job anymore... would be grateful to hear some of your opinions...

  5. #21
    matemate is offline Registered User
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    hely, working in banking i actually think that part-time should be very much possible in compliance as long as you are willing to take yourself back a bit in terms of promotion and salary raises. if it's possible in one area within a bank, it's compliance!

    just ask them

  6. #22
    LeahH is offline Registered User
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    if you are not client facing or in a support function that is market driven, it should theoretically be easier to push the issue of a flexible schedule. If you work for a global/Intl bank, then they 'should' be even more committed to diversity and have a harder time refusing requests related to work life balance. Of course career progression will be out the window....

    There may be policies that you don't even know exist! I only found out on my second child that as I was breastfeeding, they would pay for my baby/helper to come with me on business trips (if you share a twin room of course). I never took advantage of this but it was nice to know the option was there.

  7. #23
    ssheng is offline Registered User
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    Just found this thread as I am going through these same questions myself with my 2 young ones. One headhunter put it a good way - if there is anywhere in the world where you can try to have a career and be a parent it's Hong Kong because of the available, affordable live-in help. So, despite the criticisms of HK being unfriendly to part-time roles and women's working issues, I found that to be a good point. But of course that wasn't exactly how this thread was started - it was about how much time with your kids is enough. I recently read that people spend more time with their kids than they did in the golden ages of the 60s/70s (in the US anyway), because women used to be much more consumed by household chores and kids were often left to wander around in the neighborhood all afternoon. Not sure I completely buy into that but I guess the point is that this has been an issue for decades and at least in some people's eyes, modern conveniences have made it easier for us to spend more quality time with our kids when we are with them. I certainly don't remember tons of focused time with my parents growing up, yet it was enough time for me to have a great relationship with them.

    Curious tho - for the women that were able to go to part-time roles roles, (esp those in legal or banking), if you even still check this website, are you guys still there? Is it still working out? Career trajectory still on hold? Because I understood from some wise moms I know with older kids that all the women they knew who managed to work something out eventually ended up quitting b/c it didn't work out long term. That was disheartening, but hopefully not the case for everyone.

  8. #24
    Ness is offline Registered User
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    Hi Ssheng, am going through the same thought process... Just relocated to HK this November and am 17 weeks pregnant... Hope I will not struggle too much to find an option where to leave my baby during the day. My bank is ok with home office work so that should also help a bit... But let's wait and c how things develop when my little treasure joins us :-)

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