I’ve been getting a number of messages from women saying that the more senior they are becoming in their careers, the more they are starting to feel like an imposter.
I can relate to this.
When I got my seat at the table, that was when I really started to feel for the first time that I don’t belong. I started to doubt my abilities and whether I was good enough to be there.
Much like the Spiderman quote ‘with great power, comes great responsibility’.
It felt like that responsibility was too much to bear. It didn’t just feel like I had a responsibility for the role and in the organisation, it also felt like I had a responsibility for women, women my age (I was 30) and for young working mums (my sons were 10). I’d never had those feelings before, until I got that seat at the table.
If we don’t tackle this feeling, we reach burnout. That’s where I got to.
I didn’t have a big community of people...
I was going to post a different article with you today, but this feels like the words that I need to share today. And I’m mad, frustrated, heartbroken, sad and overwhelmed by the messages I’ve received this week and the conversations I’ve had, so here goes.
Yesterday I shared that it was 9 years since I had the first of two operations in 48 hours as a result of the physical impact of my burnout in 2013, the burnout that almost killed me, and the burnout that I refused to admit to, working from my hospital bed because I didn’t want to let anyone down, I didn’t want to seem like I had failed, I ‘needed’ to be there for my team. And whilst I was recovering and numbing from the daytime TV I’d been consuming as I lay on the sofa, the day that my sons came home from school and I said to them ‘don’t worry Mum will be back at work soon’ because for me my ability to work or not seemed to prove how healthy I was,...
I’ve made no secret of the fact that after my Burnout I continued in my corporate career and that’s where I thought I’d stay, until, three months after my two operations in 48 hours, I heard myself say for the very first time that I wanted to start my own company.
Never had I ever imagined that this was a path I would take. Firstly, I had no real idea what I would do, secondly I knew nothing about starting a business, and thirdly, my dreams of the super large global role that I would be able to take on once my sons were finished school was the thing that had kept me in my role.
The drive though of starting my own consultancy became overwhelming, and within three months, I’d left my six-figure salary, created a business that was aligned to my values and started to really focus on the change that needed to be made in the world of work. And seven and a half years later, I’m still here and growing from strength to strength.
With the news that workers in the UK can start to return to offices from 1st August there has, not surprisingly been some concern and worry along with a number of companies giving reassurance to their people that returns will be phased, and in come cases won't take place until 2021.
Over recent weeks I've seen more and more questions in HR groups from HR teams and HR Independents asking what action can be taken against employees who have so far refused to come back to work when the manager has told them to return, and my plea is that we need communication, compassion and common sense before forcing anyone to return.
I've seen and heard some of the following conversations (and iterations of them):
Company A wants employee A to return to the office but has told them they can use a separate entrance, use a separate kitchen and won't have to come into contact with any other people throughout the day. Employee A has refused and the manager wants to know what to do about it - seriously!...