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What Genuine Flexibility Means to Me | Fliss

Posted by Zen | 05th March 2024

What Genuine Flexibility Means to Me | Fliss

Back in 2020, we completely abolished the working week, meaning the team no longer has set hours (or days) where they must be chained to their desk. Instead they have absolute autonomy to work when best suits them, their commitments, and their energy cycles – providing it’s also a win for our clients and the agency as a whole. And we’ve never looked back, it’s truly been one of the best decisions that we ever made. 

But don’t just take our word for it – here Fliss shares what #GenuineFlexibility means to her:

“Some might call it multi-passionate, some having too much energy, and others still, impatience, but I’ve always found myself doing more than one thing: volunteering here, supporting there, taking on jobs outside my fixed job description. You get the idea. I assumed that when I launched my own business and founded Zen 16+ years ago that I’d be ‘full’, and not have the time to take on more. But somehow I always managed to stretch.

“But that stretch often saw me committed to early mornings, late nights, and weekends. The traditional working week, and the construct that we’re all supposed to operate within, meant that *anything* else I wanted or needed to do had to fit into *my* time. And that never sat well with me, especially when my children came along and our family grew. Which is why I embraced the opportunity for us all at Zen to abolish the working week and to explore flexibility and agility across our days with rather a lot of gusto.

“What it’s meant is that I’ve been able to make even more of a difference to the causes, the organisations, and the roles that mean the most to me. Yes, I still work part-time in Zen as a Strategic Adviser – it’s a role and a business that I love. But I now have the time and energy to also devote myself to The Ultimate Advantage, where I work with CEOs and C-suite executives to help them to stand in their power and to be the most compelling communicators possible. It’s the business, and the role, that I always dreamed of and it fills my heart each and every day.

“But I still wanted more! Which is why I’m a Founding Director of Telford Business Board, a community interest company dedicated to supporting business in our region, and providing a conduit between large companies and small, public sector and private. Add to that a place on the Board of Telford Towns Fund, where we successfully bid for and secured around £20 million of Government money to build – amongst other improvements – a physical Digital, Maths, and Innovation Hub that will be the grounding stone for advancements in technology, and in learning for young people (and less young) across our borough. I also stood as a Trustee of Shropshire Youth Support Trust (SYST) for a year to support them in the evolution of their strategic framework and their business plan.

“But even that wasn’t enough… (I know!)

“The role that makes me most proud is as a Governor of my children’s school. I get to positively impact the framework through which they, and their peers, experience their school life. How epic is that! And I’m really active in the role too. I don’t just show up for Full Governing Body Board Meetings, I’m there for Recorder Festivals and celebration assemblies, walks to Church with Reception kids, and even delivering talks on my areas of expertise. Just before half term, I was fortunate enough to be able to deliver a 30-minute session on positive psychology and emotional resilience to each of the Key Stage Two classes. Totally awesome! A school that’s open to those conversations with seven years-old upwards, and the chance to help teach a whole cohort of young people some of the most fundamental skills to protect their mental health and wellbeing. Wow! I was filled-up (and humbled).

“And that’s what genuine flexibility means to me. It’s not about being able to do yoga at lunchtime or watch the school nativity play. It’s about standing up and showing up each and every day for the causes and organisations that matter the most to me, while working full-time, but without pushing myself to breaking point, or taking from my time with my children. Genuine flexibility allows me to be my multi-passionate self, providing me with the opportunities to make a really positive difference to the communities that I serve. And that’s great for us all.”


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