Hi, I’m Jo a Business Development Manager working in Portsmouth and living in Mid Wales. I am married, with two beautiful children.
How did you get to the role you are doing today?
I have always spent lots of time travelling to and from work, however after having my daughter I wanted to spend more time with her and less time on the M25. I decided that I would go and get a 9 to 5 job locally to where I was living which at the time was a little village called Southwick in Portsmouth. My new job was 3 miles from home, heaven so I thought. The longer I was there, the more I got involved and I think my natural nature just kicked in and I started to want more so my little 9 to 5 very quickly changed to a position on the Senior Management Team.
What’s the best thing you love about your job?
I love the people I work with and the flexibility that we have with regards to new services. Our clients outsource all of parts of their business to us and whilst sometimes challenging, I get satisfaction from achieving, improving and implementing new elements.
What’s a typical day/week for you?
I have been living in Mid Wales for two years so my typical week is generally 2 days working from home and 3 days either out visiting suppliers / clients or being in the office in Portsmouth. I will move back to Portsmouth in August so I am looking forward to less driving and more time with my family.
How do you achieve work/life balance?
I have to admit that I do not always get the balance right and sometimes depending on workload it can be incredibly one sided. However I do try to ensure that time spent with my family is quality time and I am very lucky to have a husband that is very supportive of my career.
What’s the best thing about being a mother?
Cuddles, smiles and just being so proud of their achievements.
What fun things do you like doing with the kids?
The children do lots of activities, swimming, horse riding, gymnastics, my little girl also does ballet, tap and drama so there is not much time left in a week. They both love the beach and when the weather is good we drive to the beach which is about an hour away and they just play all day.
What things do you like to do (with or without hubby) to relax?
I like West End musicals with a nice quiet meal if out with my husband. On my own I like to bake cakes or a nice hot relaxing bath.
Where have you travelled to that you would recommend and where would you most like to go?
I would recommend Egypt and Sardinia for beauty and relaxation. I have always wanted to go to New York and Dubai shopping, the opportunity for both did come along with my husbands work but unfortunately for both I was heavily pregnant so could not fly. I did send my husband with a shopping list for which I must say he did extremely well, I still would like to go and see myself though.
Where/how do you regular shop?
I do a lot on online shopping as it is much easier with work and the children. I really like St David’s shopping centre in Cardiff, it has nice shops and restaurants, quite easy to spend a whole day there and still not see everything. I am originally from East London and therefore when visiting my Mum I always take the opportunity to visit the local East End markets.
What two favourite things do you own and why?
I have a Cinderella jewellery box that is made from crystal with a gold coloured bottom and a glass slipper that my Mum gave me when I was in my teens. I have put it away as my little girl is like a little magpie with anything that sparkles and I am terrified she will accidently break it.
I have a pair of shoes that I purchased from Office two years ago. They are totally not me as I like really plain things generally just black or navy but for some reason I fell in love with them and just had to have them. I have worn them once!
What have you recently purchased that has been an indulgence?
I recently purchased an evening dress to take my Nan to the Royal Albert Hall to see the Royal Marines Mountbatten Festival which was in April. I love evening dresses and before I had my children used to have all mine specially made by a dress maker in Oxford Street to ensure that there would be no embarrassing moments with someone else wearing the same as me. Once you have children it’s harder to justify such indulgent purchases.