Nothing can truly prepare you for the arrival of your first child. The combination of meeting the biggest love of your life, combined with knowing you will never not worry again, is a lot to take in!
On top of that, if you’re an employee, you can’t help but wonder how it will impact your job and your career. What will your employer do without you? Are you disrupting a business flow in a way that will hinder the company while you’re on maternity leave? Will they replace you?
These are big, stressful questions to deal with when you’re already juggling night feeds, leaking nappies and all the other joys of having a new-born!
Even in 2022, these worries around job certainty and how things will work out are a very real concern for some new mothers. That’s why Tyk is passionate about not just delivering a fantastic, inclusive and generous Parental Leave policy, but also about taking an authentic, team approach to empowering parents.
I was fortunate to be the first woman to get pregnant while working for Tyk. I am thankful that our founders created Tyk as a fully remote company with a fully flexible culture. Both founders have young families, so they understand how precious it is to enjoy that time with their children. For me, it meant that starting a family felt more like a celebration at Tyk than something to fret about.
As it’s Mother’s Day in the UK this weekend, I wanted to take the time to look at what it’s like to raise a family while working at Tyk. I’ve asked some of Tyk’s talented women to share how they juggle being fulltime mums and fulltime Tyklings. Here’s what they said.
Rachna – Head of Operations
I’m a mum. That is something I proudly carry with me anywhere, to work, to meetings, at lunch…
Tyk’s flexible, remote working culture has made it possible for me to witness my daughter’s first day at school, her first performance and all the other firsts that come with raising a child.
In my five years at Tyk, I have been able to attend my daughter’s school recitals, assembly, plays, doctor’s appointments, Christmas grotto… the list goes on, as all parents will know! I’ve also been able to tend to her when she’s sick.
At previous companies, I missed so much. I am a young mum and the stress to focus on the early stage of my career as well as my daughter has been real. I didn’t want to compromise on either side.
Tyk has given me space to be a mum and has very responsibly advocated this mindset for everyone. There is an acknowledgement and understanding of life beyond work. It’s fulfilling that I’m now able to experience and enjoy the growing years of my daughter without any compromise to my career.
As a society, we’ve never been so understanding as we are today, and although there is still a long journey ahead to normalise the importance of mums who work, I feel we’re heading in the right direction. We need to normalise a mother’s right to not have to choose between spending time with her children and working on her career. Women are (or should be) allowed to do both. Tyk makes this aim a reality.
Elaine – Scrum Master
When you have children, there are a million things to worry about. My kids are 14 and 10 so are self-sufficient, but I have school runs to do. With Tyk’s flexible working approach, I can do some work before the morning school run, take them to school and organise my meetings so that I’m there for pickup most days. And while the house is quiet, I can enjoy my focused work.
I have found that communication is the key. Throughout the week, I’m on a lot of Zoom calls. My children know that I need quiet time for the calls, but they love to ask about all the nationalities of the people I’m speaking with and what I’m working on.
Working at Tyk has allowed me to be the working mum I wanted to be. Tyk has supported my decision to have a fulfilling career AND children.
Sophie – Head of Product
Having a baby really does change everything, in ways you cannot prepare for and cannot imagine. I’m grateful that Tyk has given me the flexibility and freedom to get used to life as a mum, without the additional pressures of worrying what would happen to my career whilst I embrace my new role of motherhood.
My little girl is coming up to a year old and I’ve been there to experience every special moment with her, not just through the generous parental leave but even now that I’m back working fulltime. I get to pick her up from nursery, I get to spend lunchtime with her if we’re both home and I’m always there for bath time. This week, I got to watch her crawling across the garden for the first time at 3pm on a Wednesday afternoon. Don’t get me wrong, the mum guilt, and the work guilt is definitely still there, but working at Tyk makes it so much easier to be the best I can be at both.
Katrien – Lead Designer
Every day, at 3pm, I get to pick up my son from school and take time to listen to his stories, have fun and stop for ice cream on our slow bike ride home. Every Wednesday afternoon, I take my son to my parents. I stay there and work on my Tyk projects, while I can hear him working on his own projects with his grandparents in the background.
Working at Tyk means I get to be there for the fun times with my son, but also for the harder times. Whether that’s in the middle of the day or the middle of the night, I get to be there for him and give him the time he needs, knowing that my colleagues understand and respect that I also have my ‘mom job’.
Being a parent at Tyk is celebrated. ‘Life’ is celebrated. Which of course doesn’t mean you don’t need to work and get things done. We work hard. But I feel empowered as a mom to do it my way.
Ese – Employee Success Coordinator
I wear many hats and juggle many things on a day-to-day basis but there’s something about my mum hat that makes me feel like superwoman! Since joining Tyk, my personal and professional life has dramatically improved. This is due to Tyk understanding that no woman should have to choose between having a successful career or being a present mum.
In previous roles, I have missed out on a lot of moments with my five-year-old son. However, Tyk has made it possible for me to be able to watch my six-month-old son grow without missing any milestones, as well as being present in the moment with his big brother. Mum guilt is a thing of the past and that’s down to Tyk being strong on trust and truly advocating for a great work/life balance!
Lucy – Internal Recruiter
I suffer immensely from mum guilt. I have a daughter who is three years old. She’s at that age where she is learning new things every day and developing an incredible personality. Before working at Tyk, I felt I had to choose between either being the ever-present mum or the dedicated employee – being both was not an option. It just wasn’t possible.
Since joining Tyk, I can drop off and pick up my daughter from nursery. I can be available to attend parents’ evenings and take her to appointments without the worry of what work will think. Tyk has always put the importance of family at the forefront of its values.
It’s important for me to show my daughter that women can work hard and have a career while raising children – you should never have to choose.