Blog Employee Voice

The opinions in this category are a collective of views based on personal experience. Some are of our own, some contributed by others, all of good and professional standing and some are ones we have borrowed from other well published individuals accomplished in their own discipline. We make it our business to keep up-to-date with the latest trends and thinking in the field of employee engagement, culture and reward and recognition. Where we borrow we will always acknowledge the contributor or source and we welcome all proactive contributions. Please email any thoughts via our contact us page.

Parenthood and working – Just over a year on and we survived!

Ellie at 17 months

Parenthood and working can be a challenging time. Nick Thompson of Vodafone shares what it’s like to be a new parent AND have a career 17 months on from Ellie’s arrival.

‘I wont lie it’s been a really tough year with little Ellie not sleeping through until she was almost 1. It’s amazing though how your body adapts to less sleep and you move from surviving to living and just get on with it.

Being a Daddy has been easily the hardest job ever but also without doubt the most rewarding and even if the toughest of times you just can’t but have a big smug grin on your face.

I mentioned in my last post about being a new Daddy that I didn’t want to be a weekend Dad and wanted to balance work and little one. I am not going to say I have got it right all the time but on the whole I have a very good balance and Vodafone helps me with this.

I work from home one day a week which helps me do the drop off and pick up and get a little longer with Ellie in the evening. It’s also amazing how much more you can get done when free of the usual office distractions.

At Vodafone you are treated as an adult and depending on the role you do it’s up to you to manage your hours. I have my day set up so I am always in the office early (Ellie has us up anyway) and means I leave slightly earlier and spend any fee hours with Ellie before she goes to sleep (sometimes!). Sure there are times where I don’t get to do this but it’s the exception not the norm as I’m measured by performance and output rather than attendance.

I’m still occasionally using the gym here on campus which helps as I feel refreshed and ready to get stuck straight back into things. It also helps to avoid the lunch or after work rush.

As my role covers all UK recruitment thankfully I’m not travelling all over the UK as we use a lot of video calls and technology to communicate with all the local teams. That said sometimes you just can’t beat some face time with the local teams to really get to know them and their stories.

The balance this and our great childcare gives me and my family means my wife was able to go back to work and is just increasing her hours to take on another day. We feel we have a really happy balance between work/careers and little one.

The best part is I am just about to take a week off for Daddy Day Care. At Vodafone we get 5 days paid leave for parental leave per child and this has really helped with childcare and also enabled me to take little one away, rather than stay at home and not really enjoy my time with Ellie.

It’s been amazing how the period of ‘pain’ has extended and for the first few months people told me they are ‘good as gold’ from 6 months, and then it turned into, once they get over 1 things will calm down. Now apparently we are already getting the terrible 2’s, Ellie is only 17 months!

Would love to hear your survival tips on parenthood and working and other ‘hacks’ you have to getting the balance between career and being Mummy or Daddy.

A big thanks to Nick for allowing us to share his article. Here’s hoping many more employers consider and introduce flexible working and other technologies and initiatives to help employees be a productive and fulfilled both in and out of work as possible.


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Engage & Prosper is a UK based privately owned Employee Engagement Consultancy and Social Enterprise, on a mission to help organisations develop a highly productive and fulfilling workplace culture, with their people, through enhanced employee engagement strategies, fabulous and effective internal communications platforms and tailored reward and recognition programmes.

For more information on Engage & Prosper or to discover how we can help you achieve your organisational and people goals please call +44 (0) 330 223 0464 or find out more at www.engageandprosper.com

What I want from an employer

Perfect employee shopping list

What do I want from an employer?

All employers, particularly Talent Attraction specialists and in-house recruiters within them, want to know the answer to that specific candidate expectation ‘ What I want from an employer’.  Knowing that would help them to devise strategies to attract, hire and retain the perfect employee. So it stands to reason, they are more likely to achieve this, when the needs and expectations of the potential employee are communicated and met throughout the hiring process as well as when actually selected, offered the job and on board.

So as a nineteen-year-old female undergraduate student studying BA (Hons) Marketing, and as I fit into the generational cohort of ‘Generation Z’, who are now entering the workplace it might be helpful for them to know “What I want from an employer”.

Growing up surrounded by the ever-changing world of technology, other generations could regard that for me and my generation, this has resulted in slightly differing views on motivation and employee engagement and ultimately what people want from their employer. There has been a lot of research and speculation into different generations and characteristics, from baby-boomers to the X, Y and Z generations, and heads up Generation alpha– the current under 5’s – will be entering the workforce around 2027! Read more…

Managers were too interested in reaching targets

Young man serving behind a bar

During our series of questioning so-called ‘Gen Z students’ on their views and thoughts about management and leadership in a working environment, we asked a 19-year-old a set of questions about his previous employment experience within the hospitality sector as a waiter for a large, publicly owned business.

The following answers to such questions clearly show that this particular student felt that this was a low-paid, unfulfilling job and consequently did not want to maintain his position within the company.

Read more…

Inadequate support from management

Stressed out office receptionist

As part of our series of understanding ‘Gen Z’s’ in the work place, another student we questioned about their views and thoughts on their first job was a seventeen-year-old who worked within an administrative role as a receptionist for a small, family-owned business.

As you will see from the responses to the following quick-fire questions, aspects such as the remuneration and her colleagues were the main motivating factors of her experience of this role. These answers would suggest that she did not feel as if she had enough support from management as she thought she needed. Is this a ‘classic Generation Z’ outlook? Or perhaps did the leadership and management team not engage enough with their staff members?

Read more…

Generation Z are now in the workplace

Young woman waitressing in cafe

We are always intrigued by the viewpoints of so-called ‘millenials’ and their thoughts regarding the management and leadership within their work environment. But, ‘Generation Z’, often abbreviated to ‘Gen Z’s’ are emerging into the work place as the next big thing. A ‘Gen Z’ will have been born between the years 1995 and 2015 into the age of high-tech communication. Growing up amongst the prolific use of technology and social media is thought to make this generational cohort more independent, innovative and educated. On the other hand it has been argued that this technology-driven lifestyle may be producing impatient individuals who rely on instant access to information, which could affect the way they learn and their interpersonal skills.

We asked a number of university students various questions about their first employment experiences. This nineteen-year-old student had worked as a bar assistant within the service industry and happily gave us her views and thoughts of her first summer job working for a small privately-owned business. Read more…