Coaching Returning Employees After the Parental Break

by Natasha Arvinte Hickey (Ireland)

A few months ago, Anne (name changed for confidentiality reasons) reached out as she felt in despair and stuck in her career. She was looking to find clarity, options and actionable steps to progress with her current company or move to a new one.

Anne has gone through two internal interviews after coming back from maternity leave, both unsuccessful and with no opportunity for promotion in her current role.

What Anne shared in the first coaching session was that she felt frustrated, due to her feeling going on maternity leave twice (in close proximity) left her playing catch up in her career, with reduced potential for promotion when most of her peers got promoted or advanced their careers.

Unfortunately, many organizations around the world don’t have structured and holistic support (training, a buddy, career coaching, mentorship, a gradual workload, manager support) for returning parents.

What happens when parents return to the workforce from parental leave? In most cases women as primary caregivers feel left ‘behind’, lack confidence, doubt their skills and abilities, and are overwhelmed in their careers. This can lead to burnout and even quitting the job.

Being a working mother myself, I could relate with Anne on a personal level and agreed to support her through coaching sessions.

Source: iCN Issue 39  (Career Coaching); pages 42-44

Natasha Arvinte-Hickey About Natasha Arvinte-Hickey 

Natasha Arvinte-Hickey  – BA in Psychology, Pedagogy & Social Assistance Sciences, Balti State University in Moldova, where she is originally from.

Natasha is motivated in helping people grow & reach their full potential through my two passions – Learning & Development and Coaching.

She is currently the Learning & Development Manager for, based in Ireland, and passionate about supporting our company’s mission ‘I help people get jobs’.