Laynie Osborn – Commercial Engagement Lead

3 mins 23 March 2022

I started working at FSP in January 2014.  I remember going to the interview and coming away knowing that I had to work for FSP. 

At the time, I was a single mum to my lovely little girl, who was nearly two at the time, and I was so thankful to be offered flexible working hours to accommodate nursery pick-ups and drop offs. There were no questions asked when I requested to only work 4 days a week so I could maintain a good work-life balance.  I’ve always lived in the Midlands and FSP had no qualms about offering me the job, knowing I lived over 100 miles away from the office.  I was on a home-working contract even before Covid and was always made to feel just as much part of the team as anyone else at FSP.  With the use of technology, I’ve always been able to keep in close contact with the rest of the company and although it’s lovely to visit the office to see my colleagues, there is never any pressure or expectation to travel to the office.

My circumstances have changed significantly since I first started at FSP. I returned to work in April 2021 after having my second child.  FSP were so accommodating and supportive during my pregnancy and leading up to the start of my maternity leave in November 2019. My family were absolutely showered with gifts when my second daughter arrived and I knew there was always someone at the other end of the phone if I ever needed any help or support throughout my maternity leave.

It wasn’t long after my daughter was born that Covid struck and everyone within the business began working from home. This meant that all the company updates, social events and any get togethers were all taking place online. This was fantastic for me as it allowed me to be as involved as I wanted. I could stay connected with my colleagues and I was able to join in with all the fun online social events (80’s party night, cocktail making etc), whilst I was still off on maternity leave.

Due to Covid, I was concerned about returning to work and not being able to juggle the pressures of home-schooling my eldest daughter and looking after my youngest daughter, who was on the move – I couldn’t take my eyes off her for a minute. Additionally, I needed to care for my 96 year old grandad who was shielding and required a lot of care. The thought of adding work into that mix was an unimaginable one. 

The leadership team at FSP are so approachable, they always have time to listen to any concerns and are on hand to find solutions or give advice.  I was grateful after a few discussions with Simon, CEO and Laura, Partner – People Operations, that they agreed for me to extend my maternity leave and only return to work when life started to get a bit easier at home. I honestly couldn’t have asked for a more understanding and supportive employer.  Since returning to work, they have encouraged my flexible working hours to accommodate both of my children’s needs – I now work Monday to Wednesday and I do my hours around school drop-offs and pick-ups. I feel very lucky to enjoy my job as much as I do.  My role is varied, I am always given the opportunity to try out new things or go on courses if there are areas I’d like to develop my skills in.  We are like a family at FSP, who all have a part to play in our joint success.  I am very passionate about doing a good job and I always feel like my efforts are appreciated.  I can honestly say, I’ve found a job for life at FSP and I can’t ever envisage wanting to work anywhere else.