BY Talking Talent
Maternity Coaching ABC's
Photo credit: Creative Commons
You shouldn’t have to choose between having a baby and maintaining a successful career. Yet up to 30% of women leave the workplace after becoming mothers. An increasing number of companies, alarmed by their loss of talented employees, are offering maternity coaching to stem the tide. “Coaching will help you take a proactive approach towards becoming a working mother and advancing your career,” says Karen Rubin, Managing Director of Talking Talent, North America.
What is a Maternity Coach?
A maternity coach is an experienced, confidential, and independent third party. Your coach will help you approach all aspects of maternity leave and provide you with a practical toolbox to deal with common challenges. Maternity coaching will empower you to face the joys of motherhood ahead, safe in the knowledge that you are supported.
“My coaching was hugely beneficial. Not only did my coach help me identify a number of key areas to focus on, but she also provided me with really helpful tools and ideas. I will be recommending this coaching to my colleagues.” Director, Deutsche Bank
How Does It Work?
Maternity coaches are often hired by companies, but their full support and focus is on you. Your coach facilitates a process to help you fulfill your potential as a professional and a parent. Coaches understand the challenges of maternity leave, and equip you to face each stage of the process with confidence. Coaches listen. They help in areas which may seem daunting, such as announcing your pregnancy, creating a transition plan to manage your workload, determining how connected you want to be while on leave, planning your return to work, maintaining your brand, and developing a 100-day-plan to ensure a positive re-entry back to work. With coaching, you’ll learn how to ensure that their key stakeholders know what you want, how to broach conversations with your manager, colleagues, and clients, and even get assistance in crafting a request for flexible working (if this is any option at your company). Your coach will help you understand common biases, including mistaken assumptions that working mothers are less committed, and inspire you to advocate for yourself.
“The coaching opened my mind to think about coverage for work and help I may need at home as well.” Barclays coaching participant
Coaches arm you with emotional techniques to defuse moments of feeling overwhelmed by the dual role of working-mom. Through coaching you can learn how to minimize guilt and avoid burnout, two areas which can easily derail a woman’s ability to be a mom and a professional. Your coach will offer a fresh perspective, encourage you to consider your ideal working hours, and help you build confidence in your ability to perform as an active parent, with a career.
“My coach gave me confidence in how I’m dealing with my situation. I now have a wider sense of how I can cope going forwards, and I’m actually taking steps to make things better.” Attorney, law firm
How Can I Find Out if My Company Offers Maternity Coaching?
If you’re not sure whether your company offers maternity coaching, ask your HR department. Talking Talent has provided maternity coaching support to over 14,000 women and their managers around the globe. Our clients include Deutsche Bank, Barclays, Bank of America, MetLife, Grant Thornton, and many others. Companies love us because we help them hold onto their female talent in the years when they’re having children. This saves them money on costly turnover.
“Our work with Talking Talent forms a core part of our global strategy to retain and progress talent at Barclays. It offers first-class support to our working parents.” Wendy Papworth, Barclays Director Global Diversity & Inclusion
Creating a Sustainable Personal and Professional Life
Maternity coaching has positive effects which extend well beyond your leave; it even has a proven impact on retention and future promotions. You will engage in an ongoing dialogue about the life you want which will enable you to clarify your goals, and empower you to develop a unique action plan. Because, when it comes down to it, any decision to end your career should be a choice, not a sacrifice.
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