Return to Work

Connecting our Community: Meet Leah

Leah owns her own Law Firm which has allowed her the flexibility she needs to practice law and be a Mum two young boys. Leah’s perspective on the work/life balance is coloured by her IVF journey. While Leah experiences her own guilt of being a working Mum, she has some practical advice on how to keep the balance from tipping too far towards work.

What industry do you work in?


What is your current family situation?

I’ve been married to Paul since 2003 and we have two young boys, with my eldest starting school in 2016. After needing IVF and going through a long journey to have my boys, I decided I did not want to put them in child care for 12 hours per day 5 days per week.

What is your current working arrangement?

I commenced my business officially in 2011-12, as I wanted to return to law (after having a break) but did not want to be stuck in the traditional law firm, generally city based and non-existent part time work. I created a business model that work for me – namely that I can come and see clients either during business hours or at night. I can get the work done when it suits me too – so if I want to be a night owl, I can, without leaving home.

Does this work for you and your family?

It has, however now I have reached a point where I need to grow my business to the next level. I don’t want to be a sole practitioner forever and I am looking at growing my firm both in terms of number of staff including solicitors and also the areas of work. I am in the office 4 days per week and work this around my current child care commitments. For my child’s kindergarten orientation, I simply switched the phones over to a virtual receptionist and told clients I was out of the office

What surprised you when you returned to work?

The challenges and demands in being both a professional, mum and household manager all at once.

What is your biggest challenge juggling work and family?

Keeping the balance in focus and not allowing it to tip too much towards work!

What’s your best piece of advice for mums returning to work?

Outsourcing the home tasks you can – cleaning, gardening, lawns, ironing – whatever you can!

If you could have changed one thing about being a working mother, what would it be?

Feeling guilty


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