FredericGMA Manager Analgesics
Frederic Esclassan is a GMA Manager Analgesics in the UK. Here, Frederic tells us how Reckitt’s employee value proposition, Freedom To Succeed, has enabled him to bring his whole self to work. The support he received whilst going through the adoption process and beyond, has allowed him to progress his career whilst adjusting to life as a working dad.
I’ve had the freedom to bring my authentic self to work. As a gay husband and dad this means I can develop genuine relationships with my colleagues, without having to filter what I’m sharing about my day-to-day life. I also have the freedom to be able to adjust my workload so I can prioritise my family and my wellbeing, while still delivering meaningful work for Reckitt.
I received very positive and encouraging feedback about adopting a child.
When I made the company aware that my husband and I were planning to adopt and that I would like to take full parental leave, as recommended by the adoption agencies, I wasn’t sure how the news would be received or whether it was even possible for a dad to take such long parental leave. But I was delighted by the response and support I received and was given , so I could look after our son when he came to live with us.
Returning to work was made easier too. When it was time to come back, I wanted to make sure the return to work would not be too much of a shock for either me or my son. Thankfully, my manager was agreeable to me working a reduced number of days and this eventually became a permanent arrangement, allowing me to spend more quality time with my son.
As any new parent will tell you, adjusting to being a working parent is not easy and there are still times when I find it difficult. So, I’m glad to be working in a team where I can openly discuss this struggle and try to find solutions with my manager, without fear of being judged negatively.
I’ve even been encouraged to develop my career during this time. At no point in my adoption journey, or new life as a parent, was I made to feel that I might not be able to keep progressing in the company. On the contrary, I actually received a promotion in the middle of my adoption process.
Now I’m hoping to create change. As a dad, having the freedom to take full parental leave and adjust your working hours to care for your child, is by no means always the norm and even sometimes frowned upon. I hope that by being visible and vocal about how Reckitt have supported me to do this will help to create change by normalising it, not only in our company, but even more broadly.