Examples of Differing Working Practices and Flexible Working

Dr Nick Branch

Dr Nicholas Branch, Head of School, SAGES

"I am mainly in the office 5 days a week, except when there are student field classes, research trips and external meetings. I generally arrive at work at 8.15am and leave by 5.15/30pm. This is to ensure that I get home in time to have dinner with my family, and have an hour or so to help my son with his homework, play board games etc. Later in the evening, I normally resume work either on my research or School matters. My wife is deputy head of a large primary school, and her career is important to both of us. I rely upon having flexible working; it permits me to collect my son from school, and enables my wife to attend meetings and conferences that are important to her career development. Saturdays and Sunday mornings are family time, and it is very rare these days that I switch-on the laptop. Having a degree of flexibility in my working hours is therefore essential."

Dr Hilary Geoghegan

Dr Hilary Geoghegan, Lecturer in Human Geography, and SAGES Equality Officer

"I am in the office 4 or 6 days a week during term time, although some days I have meetings in London or York. One day per week I try (but usually fail) to work from home during term time, in order to maintain my research commitments. Specifically I attempt to use this day to create 'thinking' space. Thinking is an important yet largely unaccounted for time commitment for academics. My partner is a director in an international accountancy firm. His job regularly takes him overseas. As a result, my working life is largely based around periods of intense working beyond the 9-5, with fluctuations depending on how my partner's working timetable looks. In a dual career household, and working in very different industries, it means the opportunity to work flexibly allows both careers to flourish. I appreciate this isn't possible in all job types. Indeed, the partners of many of partner's colleagues have given up work or had to go part-time to accommodate the competing work patterns. Ultimately, flexible working really makes a big difference to my life and well-being."

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