Showing posts with label Career. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Career. Show all posts

Monday, 23 April 2012

The game...


It's been a rainy stormy weekend here in Adelaide. And the last weekend of the holidays. A weekend for pottering around the house. A weekend to spend time together. A weekend to haul out the board games...

Back in the 1930's, my Dad was given, as a birthday present to his young self, one of the first Parker Brother Monopoly board games.

It became a family heirloom.

In the 1970's, my siblings and I played with the same set.

The box was long since spoiled or lost and the whatnots of the game were all stashed in a large biscuit tin. The paper money, it's colours taking on a browning of age, were thinning and well used, secured with perishing rubber bands. The ivory dice, smoother further by use, were solid. The counters - familiar icons of boot, racing car, thimble and little Scottie dog, were soft lead, and the grey battleship squashed.

The cards - property sets and community chests - all dogeared from hundreds or trades and desperate bargaining. The prized navy blue and the slummy maroon - just a couple each at opposing ends of the board, with the wealth of the $200 between them - close, but so far apart.

The houses and hotels - no plastic detailed bits - just solid wood, stained on purpose red and green.

The board - hard folded leather backed, no creak in it's spine, weathered from years of family use. Ring marks from wine glasses and a translucent greasy blots - candle wax - the 1970's was the era of the strike and the power cut...no TV lead to Monopoly in the dark, light by a flicker of a candle...

This old set now belongs to one of my brothers - still housed in that same old biscuit tin.

A wet weekend over a decade ago saw the lovely husband and I seek out a Monopoly set of our own. I yearned for wooded properties and lead counters - we found one. The set we play with now, with children of our own.

And the deal was then as it is now.

Use you allocated cash wisely but know that property is king and developing upon land will always, despite cash flow issues, ensure future security. Do it tough at first, as you invest, and weather the ebb and flow of circumstance and chance. Continue to watch your properties, act with integrity in business and keep your eyes to the ground to reap the eventual long term rewards of capital growth momentum.

I love this game.


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Monday, 26 March 2012

How's it going?

Image from here
I have had a great many texts and emails and messages over the past week or so, wishing me luck for my new working week. Lots of you have asked me how it's all going. So I thought I would do a quick update -

  • The job itself is HUGE, and exciting.
  • Working in the city is a buzz.
  • Forcing myself to have a shower every morning and put make up on is a shock to the system - I had not realised how, as a work at home mum, I had always put off my grooming 'till later...90% of my showers were taken at night. So leaving the house first thing in the morning, all clean, is a revelation!
  • I like dawdling in the car in traffic - I love listening to the radio in the mornings, alone in the car.
  • My lovely husband is tops. He is currently working full time himself, as well as being a painting and decorating demon, who has also become the drop off Daddy. He gets the kids to school much earlier than I ever did, and is apparently very organised.
  • We have eaten a proper meal each night.
  • I like working. Really really like it.
  • The kids are all happy and settled and they think its funny that I clatter into the school playground in my heels a few minutes late every day to pick them up.
  • Other school Mums are sensational - they have told me to send a group text if I am going to be late and not to worry.
  • I like wearing corporate attire every day. I also love getting into my trackies the minute we get home.
  • I love watching crap on the telly after a mind boggling hard days work, with my head in my lovely husbands lap.
  • Diet and exercise? What's that?
  • My blog is suffering at my lack of time. (This will sort itself out, I am sure.)
And so starts another week....

I will, however, be at the Digital Parents Conference in Melbourne on Friday, which I am looking forward to a great deal. (And huge thanks the team Kitchenware Direct and particularly Brad Russell, their SEO and E-Commerce Manager, for sponsoring me to attend...)
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Monday, 19 March 2012

It starts today...


My new job, that is.

A friend posted on my Facebook wall to wish me luck at my return to freedom. I had not thought of it like that - I have been too busy fretting over the changes we'll be making to routines. But I like her thinking...it's positive and the start of something new and very exciting.

I will be more of me again, I think. More Lucy. Less "Mummy"?

Wish me luck?

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Thursday, 26 January 2012

Serendipitous!



When I was drowning a sea of nappies and suffocating in the fog of mundane, caring for three little babies, I often wondered whether I would EVER be able to go back to work.


I used to be a career girl.


Then the three under three situation made it virtually impossible to return.


Something inside me told me that I was not ready to return. Would I ever be confident enough to return?


The three little people at my feet made it hard to even contemplate.


Occasionally, I would wistfully look at Seek to see if there were any part time roles that could fit in around the kids, and around childcare options. On one such search, back in about 2007, I also stumbled across the Career Mums website.


I felt inspired when I found that site. Other Mums, all with great skills, all in the same boat as me, making the choice to get back to work. A website that understood the need for flexibility. It felt hugely reassuring to realise that I was not the only mum dithering over choices.


As a result of the website, I managed to get inspired enough to apply and secure some part time work around the kids. Just for ten hours a week, but it was enough for my dormant skills to reawaken.

And It also got my creative juices flowing again, and so I also began to take my blogging and my social media interests a whole lot more seriously.



Through blogging and writing I have been lucky enough to get to know the talented Allison Tait, whose blog Life In a Pink Fibro was one of my early faves. I remember her blog when it's header was a ropey snap of the Fibro's roof line. And through strange coincidence, it turns out that Allison knows the lovely Kate Sykes, founder of the Career Mums site.


I find out that not only do they know one another, but they are working together on a book...a book called...Career Mums.



All of these facts collide at the same time that my youngest, Lexie, starts school.

Serendipitous indeed.

I ordered the book on pre-order and devoured it the minute I received it.

Simple but often overlooked advice is given succinctly. The book is brilliant at the business of confidence building. 

The practical advice from experts is an eye opener. It made me realise that I had my own personal elevator pitch all wrong.

The book gave me a huge surge of hope to be honest. The "going back to work" thing, in my head, has become a huge issue. 
  • I want to really contribute to a role, to a business, to help create success. I want to share my skills to drive business results.
  • I want to work hard in a fun environment and be really productive and then hop in my car feeling a sense of achievement as I rush to pick the kids up!
  • I want to work in a role that utilises all of my skills, but I'd like to work part time.
  • I want a job that matches my skill set, where I can really make a positive difference, but at the end of the day, my children come first these days.
  • I want a job that stimulates me, but I also want to be able to walk away at the end of the day and not be stressed to the gills.
  • I want a job that pays well, but that also offers family friendly flexibility.


    Before reading the book, the above statements were all more of a wish list. Fantasy land - not attainable, so I probably was put off before I even started.

    But, now that I have absorbed the book and all it's sound advice, I feel really confident in being able to pitch to organisations and potential new bosses for the kinds of roles I am after.

    I have a copy of the book to give away, so if you'd like to be in the running for to win this, all you need to do is leave me a comment, telling me your current career goal. (And if you'd like to nip over and "Like" Career Mums on Facebook, that'd be tops too!)

    ETA The winner of this brilliant book giveaway is...Mel, of Coal Valley View. Mel, I will email you to get your current postal address!

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    Friday, 4 November 2011

    Grateful for candles...


    I have worked hard this week. I am studying to finish my Cert IV in  Property Services & Real Estate.

    I am running round, as always, to make sure the kids are dressed, fed, and happy. They are all still so little. They are my number one priority. I am tethered to their needs and care.

    The chores of a family of five do not magically disappear just because I am studying. The ironing basket still fills, and the last time I looked, there wasn't a little band of fairies waiting to empty the dishwasher nor scrub the toilet.

    My usual work both at home and in the office still needs to be completed. I am writing to deadlines for work that I am really grateful for.

    I still have a husband who wants to talk to me and who wants me to hold his head in my lap whilst we watch repeats of Mad Men with a glass of wine.

    And I am enjoying a period of particular dedication to my health. So often, when I am burning my candle at both ends, I fall back into old habits of late night snacking and crappy food choices. An exercise session here or there may get missed. But not this week. I am mindful all the time that my healthy lifestyle cannot get ditched, just because life got busy.

    I am grateful for the energy I seem to have managed to generate by eating supportively and exercising well that I know will keep me going over the next month or so.

    So, this week I am grateful for candles that burn at both ends.

    "My candle burns at both ends;
    It will not last the night;
    But ah, my foes, and oh, my friends–
    It gives a lovely light!"    

    Edna St. Vincent Millay

    What are YOU grateful for this week?

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    Linking up, as I do, to Maxabella.

    Tuesday, 27 September 2011

    Career Girl Me (Updated...)

    I first published this post a year ago. So I am posting again - with an update...

    Someone asked me the other day, about what my life was like before children...

    Before I had children, I was a career girl. I worked for a leading telco, from the mid 1990's, as a sales manager, as a marketing manager and as a project manager. In Sydney, Adelaide and Darwin. I worked full time. Full full full time. It was where I met my lovely husband. And good job I did - I was working so hard, I had little time for much else!

    I was never the clicky clacky heals corporate suit flicky hair type of career girl. I was not a glamour of the Sydney business world. But I did get recognised for objectives really well executed. And dare I say it, I was promoted more quickly that my better dressed, more beautiful counterparts...

    I loved my work. I was lucky to work with the best talent that the telco industry had at the time.  Without a doubt, I was paid extraordinarily well for campaigns well done. I thrived. I worked really long hours and was on schedule and on budget every time. I was lucky that I found a knack of getting the best out of other people, and I repeatedly was lucky enough to experience the thrill of making things happen, seeing things evolve, through the hard work of some phenomenal teams of people.




    I was lucky that I had some amazing mentors through my whole career.  Men and women that saw flickers of potential in me that I could not see in myself. I always knew I could and would work hard. Other people saw the occasional flashes of "brilliance". I put that in inverted commas because I always doubted myself. Lucky for me, they didn't.

    I worked, and played, to win.

    At the peak of my career, I finally fell pregnant. And whilst riding that high, I lost my baby. It was a late, late loss and the most heartbreaking thing I have ever had to deal with.

    We, the lovely husband  and I, we chose to retreat for a while, to the Northern Territory.

    For his career, this time; and so that I could lick some wounds and heal: we left Adelaide for the Darwin adventure.

    Again, I scored. And landed an amazing role working on a huge construction and IT project. With the best in the business across government and private enterprise, I blossomed again. Crackled with the energy and vibrancy of success. And felt some peace in my heart and mind, up there, in that amazing tropical land.

    And I fell pregnant again, this time with my beautiful eldest daughter.

    I got huge. I got hot. I got happy. I got my project, me and my pregnant belly, in my hard hat and steel capped boots.

    I finally waddled away at eight months pregnant.

    It is now over seven years since I worked on my career. I have always managed to work part time, usually from home, around the kids. As a method of keeping my marketing skills and my brain ticking over. But such part time work has been secondary to my main "job" as Mummy to my three kids.



    I miss the passion, and the cut and thrust of being really good at something, something external to my personal world.

    I miss the thrill of the negotiations, the thrill of the wins. The completions. I miss the life cycles of projects. I miss that secret internal feeling I get: "They think I can't do that,but I know I can and will, and I cannot wait to prove it."

    Lexie starts at school in term four of 2011.

    Time to start investigating what to do next...



    Updated - a year later!

    Term four of 2011 is nearly upon us. I am revelling in my last few weeks of having my youngest at home with me.

    This past year, I have managed to work from home, doing a fair amount of freelance writing and marketing work. I also stuck my toe in the water and secured some part time work for a local real estate company, working on their database, their marketing and their social media. It has stretched me and been a lot of fun.

    So much so, that the minute Lexie goes to school, I am signed up to study for two terms to complete my Certificate IV in Property Services: Real Estate. (This is the qualification required to become a real estate agent in South Australia.)



    I will undertake the study part time, around the kids, and around my existing work in the real estate office. By April I will be fully qualified, and able to secure a career role as a real estate agent. It is an industry I have always been attracted to, and I have always wanted to "get into real estate".

    It is also an industry that is notoriously hard work, and, in the current property climate, I am anticipating some tough challenges.

    That said, it's also an industry that I realise can eventually be very flexible. With my lovely husband supporting my choice, and some carefully planned team work over who drops kids off at school, and who picks them up, around BOTH of our careers, I think know we will manage. We will make it happen.

    He and I have talked it over long and hard. We realise we will give up some weekend times together. Real estate work means working weekends. But this also means we have the flexibility in the week to pick kids up after school without the need for after school care. I intend to still help with the school canteen and school reading support regularly, at the same time as planning my days around my clients needs.
    I am looking forward to studying again. I am really looking forward to working with lots of different people again, in a team environment. I am really looking forward to the day when I start earning a decent salary again, so that the pressure on my lovely husband can be eased.

    I am looking forward to giving my children, particularly my girls, the knowledge that you can have a career and be a brilliant and present Mum as well. You can. "They think I can't do that, but I know I can and will, and I cannot wait to prove it!"

    Tuesday, 21 September 2010

    Career Girl Me...(Updated)

    Someone asked me the other day, about what my life was like before children...

    Before I had children, I was a career girl - and once I settled here in Australia, I worked for a leading telco, from the mid 1990's, as a sales manager, as a marketing manager and as a project manager. In Sydney, Adelaide and Darwin. I worked full time. Full full full time. it was where I met my lovely husband. And good job I did - I was working so hard, I had little time for much else!
    I was never the clicky clacky heals corporate suit flicky hair type of career girl. I was not a glamour of the Sydney business world. But I did get recognised for objectives really well executed. And dare I say it, I was promoted more quickly that my better dressed, more beautiful counterparts......

    I loved my work. I was lucky to work with the best talent that the telco industry had at the time.  Without a doubt, I was paid extraordinarily well for campaigns well done. I thrived. I worked really long hours and was on schedule and on budget every time. I was lucky that I found a knack of getting the best out of other people, and I repeatedly was lucky enough to experience the thrill of making things happen, seeing things evolve, through the hard work of some phenomenal teams of people.




    I was lucky that I had some amazing mentors through my whole career.  Men and women that saw flickers of potential in me that I could not see in myself. I always knew I could and would work hard. Other people saw the occasional flashes of "brilliance". I put that in inverted commas because I always doubted myself. Lucky for me, they didn't.

    I worked, and played, to win.

    At the peak of my career, I finally fell pregnant. And whilst riding that high, I lost my baby. It was a late, late loss and the most heartbreaking thing I have ever had to deal with.

    We, the lovely husband  and I, we chose to retreat for a while, to the Northern Territory.

    For his career, this time; and so that I could lick some wounds and heal: we left Adelaide for the Darwin adventure.

    Again, I scored. And landed an amazing role working on a huge construction and IT project. With the best in the business across government and private enterprise, I blossomed again. Crackled with the energy and vibrancy of success. And felt some peace in my heart and mind, up there, in that amazing tropical land.

    And I fell pregnant again, this time with my beautiful eldest daughter Olivia.

    I got huge. I got hot. I got happy. I got my project, me and my pregnant belly, in my hard hat and steel capped boots.

    I finally waddled away at 8 months pregnant.

    It is now over seven years since I worked on my career. I have always managed to work part time, usually from home, around the kids. As a method of keeping my marketing skills and my brain ticking over. But such part time work has been secondary to my main "job" as Mummy to my three kids.



    I miss the passion, and the cut and thrust of being really good at something, something external to my personal world.

    I miss the thrill of the negotiations, the thrill of the wins. The completions. I miss the life cycles of projects. I miss that secret internal feeling I get: "They think I can't do that,but I know I can and will, and I cannot wait to prove it."

    Lexie starts at school in term four of 2011.

    Time to start investigating what to do next...



    Updated - a year later!

    Term four of 2011 is nearly upon us. I am revelling in my last few weeks of having my youngest at home with me.

    This past year, I have managed to work from home, doing some freelance writing work. I also stuck my toe in the water and secured some part time work for a local real estate company, working on their database, their marketing and their social media. It has stretched me and been a lot of fun.

    So much so, that the minute Lexie goes to school, I am signed up to study for two terms to complete my Certificate IV in Property Services: Real Estate. (This is the qualification required to become a real estate agent in South Australia.)



    I will undertake the study part time, around the kids, and around my existing work in the real estate office. By April I will be fully qualified, and able to secure a career role as a real estate agent. It is an industry I have always been attracted to, and I have always wanted to "get into real estate".

    It is also an industry that is notoriously hard work, and, in the current property climate, I am anticipating some tough challenges.

    That said, it's also an industry that I realise can be very flexible. With my lovely husband supporting my choice, and some carefully planned team work over who drops kids off at school, and who picks them up, around BOTH of our careers, I think know we will manage.

    He and I have talked it over long and hard. We realise we will give up some weekend times together. Real estate work means working weekends. But this also means I have the flexibility in the week to pick kids up after school without the need for after school care. I intend to still help with the school canteen and school reading support regularly, as I shall plan my days around clients, and around school hours.

    I am looking forward to studying again. I am really looking forward to working with lots of different people again, in a team environment. I am really looking forward to the day when I start earning a decent salary again, so that the pressure on my lovely husband can be eased.

    I am looking forward to giving my children, particularly my girls, the knowledge that you can have a career and be a brilliant and present Mum as well. You can. "They think I can't do that,but I know I can and will, and I cannot wait to prove it!"