If life creates two big changes at the same time – that is, you fall pregnant and at the same time made redundant, or your dream job comes up while you are expecting – how can you make it work?
By law, potential employers can’t deny you employment, and you do not have to let potential employers know that you are pregnant. In theory, that’s good news… but to land a job offer requires sensitive and thoughtful navigation.
What to Go For
Consider not only permanent roles, but also fixed-term contracts.
I have had pregnant clients who have taken a short-term contract, only to be reemployed and made permanent after giving birth. This gives you chance to showcase your abilities and for them to realise what a star you are.
Know Your Talents
You may be pregnant, but you are still you, with your own unique combination of super talents and experience. Be clear about what you bring to a business, the impact you have, and your achievements. Ask for feedback from people who have worked with you previously to help get clarity on what those talents are, and to keep your confidence high.
When To Tell
Assuming your bump is not obvious, when is the best time to tell a potential employer you are pregnant? Consider how receptive you think they will be. How can the organisation manage this? How can you ensure that they trust you and it does not damage the relationship before you start? Typically, I recommend telling them towards the end of the process or at the offer stage.
How To Tell
Tell your potential employers how you want to manage your maternity leave and your plans for coming back to work. Pay particular attention to how you will manage it smoothly for them; how you will transfer your knowledge and set things up when you do on leave. As part of this, clearly communicate your experience and what you bring to the table. Making it clear why you are (still) the best person for the job.
Here’s to success with the two new adventures in your life!
Thank you to Kate Krivanec for the photo, Unsplash.com