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Juggling motherhood and leadership, Mia's story

We speak with Mia, General Merchandise Manager for Beauty and she shares with us how she manages to juggle her personal life of being a mum to Georgia (14 months old) with bringing her best to work every day... 

 

What is your role and how does it impact the business?

Being the General Merchandise Manager for Beauty at Harrods,  I head up the Buying function and my team and I select the brands and products that you see across our Beauty Halls.  A big part of my role includes working on the strategy for Beauty, ensuring we are constantly providing the very best brand and product assortment for our clients and helping the store to fulfill its objectives of providing an exemplary and world-class client experience across all of our channels.

What made you decide to join a business like Harrods?

I have been a long admirer of the brand.  Some of my earliest memories are of shopping in the store with my parents.  It’s a special place and one that I am proud to be part of.  It never ceases to amaze me that I am now playing a role in shaping the experience and memories of others that visit us today.

How do you manage to keep a good work-life balance and enjoy the joys of Motherhood?

I’m committed to Georgia (my darling daughter) and I’m committed to my role.  I’m not ashamed to say that a big part of my self-identity is wrapped up in my career.  Being a mother is now another part of who I am.  I have to be disciplined about both spheres and when I am home, I try to be truly present and absorbed in the amazingness of my daughter – which isn’t actually that hard, but more importantly, my team and the business respect that.  There’s no shortage of things that keep me engaged at work and updates from nursery and an extensive portfolio of photos give me a dose of Georgia magic whenever I need and my husband does a huge amount to allow me to do what I need at work.

How has the company supported you in reaching that balance? 

Harrods and my line manager were very respectful of my maternity leave choices, which was something that I appreciated tremendously.  The business has continued to be supportive of some of the tweaks, changes and choices I have had to make, now that I am a parent, which again has meant a great deal to me. 

What advice do you have for those wanting to get the right balance?

Be honest with yourself and realistic about what you can achieve.  Speak to everyone that might be impacted – get their advice and their perspective.  There’s always a solution and there’s often flexibility from unexpected sources.  I was once told that work-life balance is basically fiction: aim for work-life harmony.  I understand this perspective much more and that’s what I try to achieve.  

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