Georgie: supported all the way
I knew I wanted to work within Corporate Finance since being at university and undertaking a placement with a private equity firm. The partners took me under their wing and advised me that I would give myself a really solid grounding in my career if I joined an audit graduate programme. And so, I joined Grant Thornton – which was actually the only graduate programme I applied for.
Whilst I knew I didn’t want to spend my whole career in audit, I really enjoyed my time there and loved the data analytics side of things. When nearing the end of my training programme, I began to build relationships within the Transaction Advisory Services (TAS) team here at Grant Thornton, and I joined them once I passed my final exam. I have loved it from day one.
Supported to excel
You get so many opportunities within TAS here, that you wouldn’t get at other firms. Because of the size of our team, you get to be involved in so much, from the analytics of writing reports, throughout the deal process, joining client calls and listening in to negotiations. From early in my career here I was involved in a wide range of projects, building my exposure to deals and giving me a real insight into the process.
I had some great opportunities in my first year in the team. I found myself on a flight to Salt Lake City with less than 24-hours’ notice after a client wanted someone to be there in person and I jokingly volunteered on the promise I could come back via New York. I also led client calls at times because I had started my own tracker for a client who had a number of smaller acquisitions, which meant that I had the latest status information on every project to hand. Being given this responsibility within my first year was amazing, and I was promoted to manager within two years of joining the team.
Finding the balance
I returned from my second maternity leave in May ’22, and with two young children my priorities have shifted slightly. It’s really important for me to be present for my children, so when I returned, I asked my people manager whether I could change my working hours to three longer days. The support I had was second to none, I was asked what I wanted and how I thought we could best achieve that and was told they would do their best to give me what I needed. I now work three longer days, and yes there are times when I am busy and my days are very long but equally there are quieter times so it all balances out. I know I am trusted to deliver my work in a way that works for me. Knowing that I have the flexibility to choose where I work, and how I work my hours, takes a big pressure off, and means I can be there for my children when they need me. My mantra is: ‘do what you need to do, but never miss a meeting.’ And so far, so good.
I haven’t lost my drive. Being part time doesn’t mean that I no longer want to progress, and my manager and I had a really open conversation when I returned from maternity leave. I was asked what I wanted and how the firm could best support me. Right now, with two maternity leaves in a three-year period, I want to build my confidence back up in my current role, but I know that it won’t be long until I am ready to think about promotion and at that point I can speak to my manager and we’ll start putting a plan in place. I’ve always felt supported to excel here and been given the opportunities to do so.