It feels a little strange writing this blog, as I’m not a working parent just yet.
But something I love about TDP is that we are supported as working parents, but are also supported on our journey to parenthood. A journey I’ve been on for the past 1.5 years – and one that hasn’t been a smooth ride, but I’ve been supported in an above and beyond way throughout.
I’ve also never had to hide the fact I wanted to have a family. Unfortunately, this industry is still known for preventing career advancement for those who wish to become parents, or even make you anxious that you might lose your job! From extended parental leave support to flexibility of returning to work. I’m so grateful for all the ways TDP supports us as working parents and I’d love to take you through what support looks like to us … so that you know that it’s possible.
Move over, big corp.
Having additional parental leave on top of the minimum government support is definitely not a given for a small business [HECK not even for some bigger businesses – this is your cue to step up!] but our TDP parental leave policy easily matches that of some of the bigger corporate companies in Australia. Our parental leave is not bound by gender, every single person is treated equally at TDP when it comes to parental leave, so dads [crucially] have time off too.
When it comes to our extended leave after any government payments, we’ve got two options as employees: we can either receive 3 months of full time pay, or extend this to 6 months half pay. Which means that in theory, we would have an income while on leave for around 10 months. *insert loud cheering*.
Another amazing inclusion in our Parental Leave policy is that when it’s almost time to come back to work, we’re guided and eased back into our new life as working parents by having paid contact days: one day a week where we get to soak up all the TDP goodness again and to get used to returning back to our role.
Because becoming a parent is a transformation, and you won’t be coming back the same person. The gesture of allowing us to come back a little at a time, as we adjust to our old role and new role as a parent gives us the permission to step into this new person in our own way.
We’re met with flexibility and empathy, in every way possible.
When asking our working parents the number one thing they’re most grateful for: it’s flexibility. It might even be empathy and flexibility combined.
You can’t have one without the other, tbh.
An empathetic response when parents have been up all night and need to start a little later, understanding when there is a sick child who can’t go to daycare/school and might sit next to us while we do some hours of work from the couch, or the fact we can be there to do the school drop off without feeling like others in the team think we’re not pulling our weight.
You’re backed by your team, 100% of the way.
There’s a HUGE amount of trust at TDP for all of us; an understanding that we’ll do what we need to do to complete our daily tasks and work. As parents, that’s something many of our team haven’t experienced anywhere else. There is concern and care rather than resentment when we need to prioritise family and that is GOLD.
I’m so proud to say that once more, as a small business, we are making waves. We’re making a difference in people’s lives and are leading by example, just by doing what should really be common practice. I don’t think all businesses realise the power that lies in these small gestures of solidarity with working parents, or what message they’re sending by ignoring the needs of the parents amongst them.
To TDP, sending employees off into the journey that is parenthood with flexibility, support and empathy is not just an obvious act of compassion but is also good business sense.
Because at the end of the day? It’s so simple – If you look after your employees, they look after you [and your business].