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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi mamas. I feel like I am on a yo-yo lately, one day feeling that my job is OK, and I can handle it...ya know, no job is perfect. Other days I am fed up, and want to hit the door.<br><br>
I have two other job possibilities, but they are both with companies out of the area. In both cases, the hiring managers have known me professionally for a long time, and are comfortable with me being a telecommuter. With one of the two jobs, I might have to travel maybe once per month for a couple days to have some face time in the home office. But it would be to Seattle, where we have friends and family, and my DH and DD could come along. The other job would be with a European company, so travel to the home office would be quite a commute! But, I would probably do it only once or twice a year, and that could be really fun. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"><br><br>
BTW, I am a consulting engineer in the field of electric power/wind energy.<br><br>
The advantages of my current job are:<br><br>
- 30 hour work week<br>
- flexible hours (9 hours one day, 4 hours another day, I set the schedule)<br>
- bike or walk to work<br>
- I don't travel<br>
- small company, so I have some say in policies<br>
- small company, so I have some pull in what kinds of work we do<br><br>
Negatives about my current job:<br><br>
- it is definitely a male-dominated culture, long hours and weekends are expected if I want to be taken seriously<br>
- I don't do as much work with wind energy as I would like, about 40% now<br>
- small company, with engineers who became owners/managers and have NO management skills<br>
- the company is owned by two guys who are nearing retirement, and there is no transition plan for what will happen when they leave (5 years or so)<br>
- small company, so health insurance is getting worse every year and our family leave policy is totally voluntary<br><br>
This last point is relevant because DH and I might decide to TTC in the next 6 to 9 months. DH is on the fence, but I want to have a second child sooooo badly. Part of me says to stay put and not try to change jobs until we decide to get pregnant or not. The other part of me says that this job stresses me out a lot of the time, so I might have a healthier pregnancy in another job.<br><br>
FWIW, company #1 is based in the Netherlands, so they have a culture of family time is priority over work, long maternity leaves are the only civilized option, etc, etc. Company #2 is run by a woman, who I know is striving to create a culture that values work/life balance. She had two daughters in the last 5 years, and she reduced her hours to 32 hrs/wk. The CEO!! I have so much respect for her.<br><br>
Both of these companies are in the wind energy/renewable energy field. 100%. I wouldn't have to do work designing substations that interconnect coal plants to the grid. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> But, it is likely that I would have to travel some with either new job. About 10%? One or two overnights a month, is my best guess.<br><br>
Help! WWYD?<br><br>
Thanks,<br>
Diane
 

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I would pick one of the telecommuting jobs-- mainly because of what you say about health insurance at your current job getting worse.
 

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What a wealth of options! I'd leave the long-hours, male-dominated company and take the Seattle job where traveling to the office is also a chance to see friends and family. In my experience, other mothers can be the best managers.<br><br>
I'd be a little wary of the Netherlands option. That long paid maternity leave that Dutch employees enjoy is a benefit from the state, not from the company. My employer has a European office and when US employees get stationed there they do not get the benefits, protections, vacation time, etc. that the locals do.
 

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I would totally take the telecommute to Seattle option! TOTALLY (like I'm almost drooling now thinking about it <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin"> )<br><br>
I wouldn't worry too much about the travel, either. A couple overnights a month would be worth it, to me. Where is Corvallis, again? Idaho??
 

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Both options sound wonderful, the Seattle especially. But will you miss the social interaction of going to an office? That's the only possible downside I can see, otherwise I'm totally envious.
 

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After reading your post, it sounds to me like you want to take one of the telecommuting jobs. The cons you listed for your current position far outweigh the pros, and it appears as though both the new jobs will definitely support your TTC and family leave plans. Perhaps above all, you obviously respect the work being done and policies instituted at the two telecommuting places. I say go for it, momma! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love">
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>mikaela</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/11540712"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">After reading your post, it sounds to me like you want to take one of the telecommuting jobs. The cons you listed for your current position far outweigh the pros, and it appears as though both the new jobs will definitely support your TTC and family leave plans. Perhaps above all, you obviously respect the work being done and policies instituted at the two telecommuting places. I say go for it, momma! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love"></div>
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I absolutely agree!<br><br>
I also want to add, I work for a European company and the benefits are outstanding.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>YesandNo</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/11538667"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">What a wealth of options! I'd leave the long-hours, male-dominated company and take the Seattle job where traveling to the office is also a chance to see friends and family. In my experience, other mothers can be the best managers.</div>
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Thanks, I do feel really fortunate, especially in the current economic climate. And you make an interesting point about having a manager who is also a mother. I have certainly never experienced that, but it's bound to be better than the management (or lack thereof) I have now.<br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">I'd be a little wary of the Netherlands option. That long paid maternity leave that Dutch employees enjoy is a benefit from the state, not from the company. My employer has a European office and when US employees get stationed there they do not get the benefits, protections, vacation time, etc. that the locals do.</td>
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Yep, I know. I didn't mention earlier that I actually worked FOR this Dutch employer, in the Netherlands, in 2000-2001. This is part of why they want me now, I am a known quantity. They are looking to start up in the US, and are thinking I can help them "get off the ground". I have told them of my desire for work/life balance, avoiding long hours, and having more vacation. They didn't have a problem with it at all. I guess since I would be the first US employee for them, I would have a chance to help set the policies. And FTR, I am not expecting them to give me 6 months paid maternity leave, like the Dutch employees get. But I know that if I did get pregnant, and wanted to take an extended leave (even unpaid), that they would not balk. They "get it". My current employer does not.<br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>woobysma</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/11539183"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I would totally take the telecommute to Seattle option! TOTALLY (like I'm almost drooling now thinking about it <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin"> )<br><br>
I wouldn't worry too much about the travel, either. A couple overnights a month would be worth it, to me. Where is Corvallis, again? Idaho??</div>
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I'm in the green Corvallis (Oregon). <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> There is a Corvallis, Montana - or so Google maps has told me.<br><br>
So, time for true confessions. I'm a weenie about travel. I haven't traveled since my DD was born, except rarely and then she and DH have always come along. My DD is 6, and we have never spent a night apart. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/redface.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Embarrassment"> I know she would be just fine, and my DH has been a SAHD for years, so they are totally bonded. But what if we have another LO? I would be firm about needing a long-ish maternity leave, 6 months would be good, but then I just can't imagine traveling away from my teeny baby. I have read all the posts here on this board, so I know it can be done. But I didn't do it last time around with DD, so I'm just nervous about it.<br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Qestia</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/11540055"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Both options sound wonderful, the Seattle especially. But will you miss the social interaction of going to an office? That's the only possible downside I can see, otherwise I'm totally envious.</div>
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This is something I am concerned about. I am kind of a nervous nelly (especially lately, stress has been pouring in from all sides), and I tend to have high expectations of myself. Right now, I often get to blow off a little steam with my co-workers during the day and it helps to remind me that none of us have projects that go perfectly, or are able to get as much done in a day as we think we will. Consulting is just like that.<br><br><div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>mikaela</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/11540712"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">After reading your post, it sounds to me like you want to take one of the telecommuting jobs. The cons you listed for your current position far outweigh the pros, and it appears as though both the new jobs will definitely support your TTC and family leave plans. Perhaps above all, you obviously respect the work being done and policies instituted at the two telecommuting places. I say go for it, momma! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love"></div>
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Thanks, Mikaela. You're right...looking back over it, the cons do outweigh the pros. But I am the primary breadwinner for my family, so I feel that pressure to be stable. Telecommuting just seems a little more risky. You are a telecommuter, please, tell me your experience! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin">
 

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On the travelling:<br><br>
Your older child will be fine. Heck, at that age I was routinely spending one night a month at a friend's house just for fun. As for the hypothetical baby, can you take him or her with you on the trips and either hire a mother's helper (in the case of the NL company) or get family to help (in the case of the Seattle job)?
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>lolar2</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/11544949"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">On the travelling:<br><br>
Your older child will be fine. Heck, at that age I was routinely spending one night a month at a friend's house just for fun. As for the hypothetical baby, can you take him or her with you on the trips and either hire a mother's helper (in the case of the NL company) or get family to help (in the case of the Seattle job)?</div>
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<br>
Excellent points. I'm thinking about going on a little "mama vacation", like an overnight on the Oregon Coast by myself, just to prove to DH and DD that they.will.be.fine.<br><br>
The mother's helper is not something I had thought about. Could totally work, though.<br><br>
I'm trying to be patient right now, and wait for the Dutch folks to get back to me. The Seattle option looks pretty realistic, and I just emailed the woman who heads the company (not asking for a job, just a "checking in, how are you?" kind of email), and she said I should stop by the next time I'm in Seattle. Hmmm... I think we may be making a trip to Seattle in the next month or two. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin"><br><br>
Thanks for building up my confidence, mamas. That's part of what I don't like about my current job. They make me feel like if I'm not willing to be married to my job, I'm no good. It's crappy, and I think I'm done with it. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/irked.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="irked">:<br><br>
~Diane
 

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<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>lolar2</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/11538450"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I would pick one of the telecommuting jobs-- mainly because of what you say about health insurance at your current job getting worse.</div>
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I agree mama.<br><br>
Good Luck with your decision!
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Diane in Corvallis</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/11541843"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Thanks, Mikaela. You're right...looking back over it, the cons do outweigh the pros. But I am the primary breadwinner for my family, so I feel that pressure to be stable. Telecommuting just seems a little more risky. You are a telecommuter, please, tell me your experience! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin"></div>
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I love it <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/love.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="love"> Although, the primary reason why I began a telecommuting schedule was for different reasons (so my son could leave school), I imagine you would realize similar benefits that I have. Most notably, control of expectations. I understand the pressures of being the breadwinner, and so the need to be stable. Overall, telecommuting has allowed me to offer *more* stability and control, both at home and at work. It was a little like jumping off a cliff at the beginning, but we eventually found our groove.<br><br>
I tend to be a planner; I love procedures, checking things off lists, organizing spaces, tracking information, etc. The best thing I did was let some of that go when I set up my telecommuting schedule with my employer. I had no idea what to expect and rather than set up some complicated system for tracking hours and work, I decided to keep it simple. My employer and I basically left it at "keep doing your job well and I won't care where or how it gets done." I go into the office once a week, but other than that I have no set schedule.<br><br>
Feel free to PM me if you have any specific questions <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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I'd probably telecommute with the Seattle company. If you decide to get pregnant, it'll be nice not to have to dress up and to work flex hours. When I was pg, I desperately wanted an afternoon nap! If I had telecommuted, I could have napped and then done my work later in the evening.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
OK, so I just had contact from both of the companies (one based in Seattle, and one based in the Netherlands) on the same day!<br><br>
I have an early morning phone call with the European group manager tomorrow. They sound interested, but there are definitely logistical things to discuss. I have to do some prep, but I think I can be ready. The manager said things might start to move quickly (at last!). He says they have a company-wide meeting each year, so could I tentatively block out the dates? This year it's in September...in Malta! OMG!<br><br>
The Seattle company emailed today and said they are VERY interested in talking with me about employment. Like, "when can we call? Today? Tomorrow?" I am about doing back-flips. My current job has been dragging me down lately, and it feels so good to get positive responses.<br><br>
Please, send positive vibes!<br><br>
Thanks, mamas.<br><br>
~Diane
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
The Netherlands is a go. (gulp) (and wow!)<br><br>
Seattle is not. They changed their tune about remote employees, and are really focusing on growing the "in-house" team. No sweat. They were still really complementary about me. And I think if the Dutch company comes through and I help them start a US office, that the Seattle company could be one of our first clients! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin"><br><br>
So, now I have to wait a couple weeks until the European manager makes his presentation to the board of directors. I realize now how much I want this. These discussions started, in a very general way, a YEAR ago. Good things come to those who wait, right......?<br><br>
Somehow, I have to stay <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/kewl.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="kewl"> for just a little while longer.<br><br>
Thanks for the support!<br><br>
~Diane
 

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Wow, awesome! Best of luck! You're very patient. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink">
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up"> (If you need telecommuting employees let me know ... <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"> )
 

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Awesome news! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/joy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="joy">:
 
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