July 7, 2022

The secret to a career trajectory that hits the mark

Parental leave policies

Looking for a new opportunity?

Our transparent job board only has vacancies from employers we endorse and lets you see what benefits, policies and perks come with the job. Check out the latest job vacancies with Arrow Energy

Knowing how to properly load, aim, and fire a bow and arrow will make the difference between a whiffed shot and a bullseye. Similarly, knowing how to properly reflect, plan, and execute your goals will make all the difference to your career trajectory too. 

We spoke with Agnieszka Clarke, Commercial Manager, who has been with Arrow Energy for more than a decade. Not only has she experienced tremendous career progression and leadership opportunities, but she’s also a working mother of (soon-to-be) two children. 

She shares her career journey at Arrow so far, and how the company has enabled her to guide the course of her career in all the right ways.  

Getting your stance correct

This is one of the most overlooked aspects of archery, and it can be just as easily overlooked in career planning too. In career planning, a steady stance comes from finding the right environment and culture to take your best shot. 

While it’s only to be expected for the culture to evolve over the 11 years Agnieszka has worked at Arrow Energy, she says there’s always been a focus on promoting respect, integration, and collaborative ways of working. 

“It’s about respect for how we interact with one another, recognizing the different expertise and experience we can all bring to a situation.”

Since there is no one right path for everybody’s career, this respect and reflection helps each employee find the right path for them. 

A career path with twists and turns

This is where the arrow analogy starts to fail us because unlike the path of an arrow, Agnieszka’s career trajectory has been given options to take turns and pivot in new directions. One such pivotal moment in her career journey happened a few years ago when she was given the opportunity to support a strategic transaction. 

“The transaction was led by highly talented and experienced people. I learned a lot in the process – it inspired me! That experience really crystallized for me what I wanted out of my professional career. I realized that through commitment, hard work, and the right support I could achieve my professional goals at Arrow.” 

And what were these new crystalized goals? 

“I decided that one day I wanted to be in a leadership role where I was able to make significant and visible contributions to the business and inspire others the way I was inspired by the Deal Team.”

Since that moment, Agnieszka has done exactly that. She’s since been provided the opportunity to lead and close out key transactions and was promoted to a manager role where she has led a group of, in her words: “exceptional professionals”. 

The drawback, to shooting forward

Before an arrow can be shot forward, there’s an inevitable pull backward first. When we talk about the career trajectory for women, this backward motion can easily be compared to the ‘motherhood penalty’ – or the disadvantages women face in their careers after having children.

Here again, our arrow analogy fails us. 

Because when it comes to parenthood, Arrow Energy’s parental leave policy has given Agnieszka amazing comfort, as she prepares to take parental leave very soon. 

Parental leave policies

“Arrow’s support of flexible hours and work-from-home arrangements will be hugely beneficial to me when I return from parental leave. It’s difficult to fully predict what my future family requirements may be. But if I discover I need additional support, I have full confidence I’ll be able to talk openly with my managers about my individual circumstances, and that Arrow will look for ways to support me.” 

Arrow Energy offers a range of flexible work and gender-neutral parental leave policies, including: 16 weeks paid parental leave for full-time carers and four weeks paid parental leave for secondary carers.

Find out more about this and other benefits.

Agnieszka believes with the right support, and the right respect (which we’ve already said is a pillar of the culture at Arrow Energy), you can achieve a great balance when it comes to being a working mother. 

“You just need to understand what works best for you and your family and be open about how you think you can fulfill both your family and professional commitments. I also think consistency is important, to the extent you’re capable.” 

Hitting your own career bullseye

Everyone’s circumstances, expectations, and preferences are different, so there’s no guarantee that the targets Agnieszka has aimed for will be the same as yours. But that’s okay. 

“What I can attest to is that whatever your personal circumstances and potential concerns, there are many exceptional people and leaders at Arrow who genuinely care. They’re only too willing to help you navigate your journey.” 

Want more articles like this sent to your inbox every month?

Just let us know what kind of support you’re looking for so we can sign you up to receive the right newsletter for you.

Stay in touch with our ‘Women at work’ newsletter

Enter your details to sign up to our newsletter for the women in our community. Every month you’ll be sent our latest news, advice, inspiration and resources for supporting your career.

Looking for HR and DEI updates?

Check out our monthly newsletter for HR professionals.

About the Author
Jacynta Clayton’s career started in recruitment advertising and employer branding, working with global clients to create and deploy strategic and creative content. Now she combines her industry experience with the knowledge from her psychology and professional writing degrees to write unique and resounding stories. As a WORK180 storyteller she relishes the opportunity to elevate the voices and experiences of so many amazing people, while also empowering and educating audiences on how to choose a workplace where they can thrive.

Looking for a new opportunity?

Our transparent job board only has vacancies from employers we endorse and lets you see what benefits, policies and perks come with the job. Check out the latest job vacancies with Arrow Energy