Role Model Corner – Frederick Krespi

  1. What led you to decide to take Shared Parental Leave?

Predominantly to support my wife who wanted to go back to work quite quickly. We also liked the idea of playing equal roles in terms of looking after the baby. We both took three months off.

 

  1. What have been your highlights so far?

Bonding with the baby during my time away from work, and becoming more confident looking after him on my own.

 

  1. What do you see as the biggest challenges for working parents today?

I can only really talk to our own personal experience as we’re one of the first of our friends to have kids… We were quite surprised about nanny fees in central London. We’ve ended up hiring a full-time nanny and the costs were much higher than we anticipated, especially if you also include agency fees. In terms of time, sometimes my wife has to stay late in her office, and she gets upset if she misses Ralph before he goes to bed, especially as she is still breastfeeding. Those for us have been the two biggest challenges for working parents.

 

  1. In what ways do you see the future of work changing to reflect this shared approach?

I found that my company was incredibly supportive of shared parental leave, but that not many fathers were utilizing it. When I started enquiring about it, there was a well-established policy in place, and HR gave me lots of guidance. However, I only knew two other fathers that had taken it across the whole division. I would hope that in the future, fathers feel more comfortable taking shared parental leave and it becomes more commonplace.

 

  1. To what extent have you stayed connected to work and colleagues during your leave, or created new networks?

I had periodic calls with my manager where we’d catch up on how my leave was going, and what was going on in the office, which I valued.  In terms of new networks, I made friends with other parents through the NCT and baby classes including Gymboree & Water Babies.

 

  1. Who has had the most positive influence on your career or on your approach to business, and what did they teach you?

My manager. I have only ever worked at BofAML so have learned everything I know from this team. My manager has been a great influence on my career & development.

 

  1. In what ways might you approach your career differently now, to how you did before your son/daughter was born?

Honestly, in the same way.


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