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Or, Part time partner wanted to not end up doing a full-time job for half the pay while taking on more responsibilities at home. Download this podcast. There are a lot of reasons working part time might make sense: among them, you have more hours in the week to take care of kids or parents, take on freelance work, go back to school. But working part time can stall career advancement, and oftentimes women end up doing a full-time job for half the pay while taking on more responsibilities at home.
She suggests factors to consider before reducing your hours and conversations that can smooth the transition. Kristin McElderry is a management consultant. up to get the Women at Work monthly newsletter. We got there just before she pulled into the driveway after dropping her oldest at daycare. Let me come shake your hand and grab my kiddos. Good to meet you. Because working part time as a manager, especially in consulting, where people often put in long hours and are on call for clients, is pretty unusual.
And she says that while her role is complicated — and not typical, her career is going pretty well. I actually just went, came back from my third maternity leave last week. Last Friday was my first day. This was kind of my first full week back. A lot of my friends are actually stay at home moms, and I had really considered it. I think you could do it part time, would you consider it? Part time partner wanted so I had a meeting, brought the baby with me. We talked about what that might look like and I came back.
And the way it works at my firm is you just take a percentage. And so I was kind of like, I wrote the terms, they the terms. I mean they came to me with the role, right? Like they were in demand for my skills, which was a great place, position for me to be in. So I was able to kind of set the terms, which is helpful. So I worked for a firm that you can work all over the country. And I have been on, prior to starting to work exclusively in Massachusetts, I was on an airplane Monday through Thursday. So a lot of my peers work on airplanes. And I kind of was very intentional about trying to get involved with a local team so that I would be doing local work.
I get reached out by headhunters fairly often and recruiters. And that pretty much abruptly halts the conversation. But not everybody is in a phase to do that. I mean, I was nervous.
So she watched our son while I came back to work. And then we ended up kind of moving into more formal childcare after that. But I definitely think that helped me being very comfortable with the childcare kind of take that leap of faith to work part time. But I, my confidence in being able to get kind of promoted to the next level of part time — like part of what it is in the firm I work for, you do your project work, but a lot of what helps you get to that next level is all that extra stuff, right?
And I felt like my plus one was doing a full-time job in three days, you know? Like that is my plus one. I was kind of at my limit. And I had a pretty frank conversation with him and said, you know, what does this look like? And I actually felt really supported coming out of that conversation. He basically said, You want to make senior manager this year? I said, Yeah, yeah, I do. And you know, it was fantastic. And it was fantastic.
I mean with that, I just came back to work. Part time partner wanted have your peers felt about you working part time? Oh my gosh, that was amazing. That was crazy. I trust you can do a full-time job three days with that move. I actually got the same advice from one of my main mentors. She kind of said like, everybody I know who works part time works more. And I definitely can see how that can happen. I actually, you know, just came back to work. Before when I returned from leave I like really eased into it. And it is trickier as you get more senior. So in one of my last roles I was managing I think 10 or 11 folks.
They were all pretty junior, they, you know, a year or two out of college. And they all worked five days, right? And I was working three days. And so giving them like kind of the mentorship that they needed and the coaching and the feedback, you know, that was tricky to do in three days in addition to client meetings and everything else. And so from just how many hours a day you have and managing a big team, that that was really tricky. I also think just kind of the scope of what you do gets a little bigger.
Sometimes they ask us for a proposal with a week. And that makes it a little trickier. I was like, Wow, me working part time is not an excuse for you not to do your job. And so a little bit, not a lot. And I was, you know, kind of teetering, should I send this, should I not send this? And then I was like, no, I have to.
I mean, I really have great management. They do really try and be accommodating. I think part of it too is that deciding to be part time is definitely making a decision about your career in some ways, right? I think for a while. I am hoping to move up to four days. NICOLE TORRES: I am curious what this would be like for other women, you know, who might have to negotiate more to go from full time to part time, people who are scared to ask their boss and unsure of how to frame that question.
And what about the stigma that part-time workers face, not being at the office all the time and being less visible. So we called on someone who could give us the big picture. About 20 years ago, she and colleagues did a study on women who work part time. They were trying to understand the advantages and disadvantages of going part time and whether it helps ease conflict between their responsibilities at work and their responsibilities to their families. So, for example, in Canada, we have a relatively low reliance on a part-time work probably because we have many things public policy things that make it possible for women to combine work and family.
What did she mean by that? So the idea here is that we judge how engaged you are, how committed you are, how loyal you are to the workplace by your visibility and by the of hours you put into work and by not saying no. And saying no and putting family first actually is a career-limiting move.
So while the organization has these great policies quite often around part-time work, the reality on the ground is quite different. My data says that you have fewer hours, less pay. Why does it seem to work for Kristin? So I thought that was quite interesting. It really depends on your life cycle stage, how old you are, where are you in terms of having children, having children and eldercare.
Most of the people that I research who have eldercare issues, a lot of them tend to be older and so they go Part time partner wanted part time as a way to try to balance the eldercare demands, which are totally unpredictable as compared to childcare demands. Childcare has more predictability in it, actually. You never know when your mother or father is going to fall, break their hip.
And so part time tends not to work for those people, and many of them just decide then to quit. So you have to decide what is it? Is it a choice of not going back into the workforce? Is it a choice of taking early retirement? How important is my career to me? How important is my physical and mental health? All of those kinds of things. So what we do know is actually for many people, work provides a protective function. Especially for people with eldercare.
So people with eldercare say to me, You know, stress at work comes and goes, but eldercare is different, it hurts the heart. The work function going in, talking to people, getting the social support. On the other hand, with childcare, your kids are growing up. And so there is a different desire to be there for them. The motivation is different. So I think you have to ask yourself some questions.
How long do I want to do this for? What am I missing out on in my career? Will I regret this if I do it? Is this something I want to do, or is this something my partner wants me to do, or is this something my parents think I should do? So if your career is really important to you, have an off-ramp but have an on-ramp and a time in mind.
If women work part time and are viewed as not taking their work as seriously as full-time professionals, how long does that stigma last? Is it a long-lasting stigma? We have much more liberal social policies. So we have one year paid parental leave.Part time partner wanted
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