Past Meetup

SyncDevelopHER October - Frances Scarff

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An unintentional career

Frances Scarff

If I had followed my original career plan I would now be teaching mathematics to teenagers. Never in my dreams did I see myself as part of an executive team leading a start-up company delivering best practices to 180 countries in 23 languages and making a real difference to organisations and governments as a result.

Some parts of the journey I stumbled on by accident, others took some planning – but at each stage it was about taking decisions that worked for me and then putting energy and drive into each role I took on.

Trying to balance all the elements affecting me has been a challenge in itself. So treating my activities as a portfolio of things to be managed has helped particularly to keep control of the various conflicting elements of being a wife, mother, Guider and worker/civil servant. Remembering to maintain ‘business (or life) as usual’ is particularly important when balancing all the elements and often ends up feeling like an afterthought. More recently the changes in technology make it more difficult to switch off from work and focus on ‘home life’ – this became more problematic in 2013 when we set up AXELOS.

During the talk I will explore strategies I have used to adjust to the challenges of the changing world around me plus lessons learned and why we all need to be adaptable to cope with life let alone work.