In the third article of the series considering what it is really like for women working in the City, I will be exploring the difficulties of having a family whilst working in the City and dispelling misconceptions of maternity leave holding you back.


A common preconception of women going into the City, especially corporate finance, is that it will be difficult to start a family. Although, at the beginning of their career the thought of matters such as maternity leave are far from most women’s minds, it is often still a subconscious drawback. It is frequently thought by both women who work in the City and women looking to do so that it is incredibly difficult to come back from maternity leave and juggle bringing up and looking after their children with the job. However, Jen Clarke, VP, Investment Banking at Berenberg, has experienced, maternity leave twice and felt that it did not hold her back or restrict her ability to get involved in future deals. The firm she was working at at the time, was also incredibly supportive and flexible with the hours that she was able to work, happy to agree to a 4-day working week and supporting her promotion to director before she left so that she would be able to get right back to work when she returned.


Everyone’s experiences will be different and one of the women that I have interviewed did feel that if she were to have children she would struggle to return to work. However, most firms are incredibly supportive and have made conscious changes to make it easier for women to return from maternity leave without any hinderance to their career.


Author: Pippa Seager