At Carbon, we believe that it is important for all our employees to be heard, supported, and have a voice. As an employer, it is important to us that we understand and are equipped to deal with the issues that individuals and groups face in today’s society, giving confidence to our team that we are there for them, as they are for our clients.
Earlier this year, we ran a campaign for International Women’s Day featuring our female employees at all levels of the business. In the spirit of equality and encouraging all employees to speak out about challenges and barriers they are looking to overcome, we have spoken to some male colleagues within the business to get their perspective.
Tell me about your role with Carbon and what is involved day to day?
I’m the Director of the Glasgow office for Carbon but primarily I’m a financial planner and I’m responsible for attracting and looking after clients in the West of Scotland.
What has been your career experience to date?
I’ve got approaching 30 years experience in financial planning which has included working with very large organisations, smaller IFAs, my own business and of course Carbon. My breadth of experience has led me to dealing with all kinds of people and situations, which has allowed me to have a varied and interesting career! I’m now more focussed on the kind of clients I particularly enjoy working with.
What are the key issues facing men at the moment and why do you think it is important that they are highlighted?
One topic that feels current for me is the shift in attitude around men’s mental health. Traditionally, men haven’t been great at opening up around on things that are bothering them which means that they aren’t letting off steam when the small issues are still small. I think it’s important to reach out to someone when you feel stressed, I feel quite comfortable doing this, but I recognise that not everyone feels the same way.
As an employer, what support do Carbon give their employees who are potentially facing challenges?
I never feel concerned sharing anything that I’m feeling with directors in the one-to-one catch ups. Carbon provides a really supportive environment, and they coach their employees to become their best selves, whether that be in their professional life or their personal life. The flexible working policy at Carbon has also allowed me to remain involved in my family throughout my children’s lives which is something I place a really high value on.
What else could be changed in society to better support men to speak out about any issues and difficulties they are facing?
As I’ve said previously, I have always felt comfortable opening up about what’s going on in my head, however I do recognise that others may not feel the same way. The change that I would like to see is more people speaking up and showing the younger generation of men and boys that it’s ok to talk.
What men have had a positive influence on you, both in your career and personal life?
I’ve been fortunate enough to meet and work with some really influential male colleagues and bosses throughout my career and I think they have all had an impact on me and my career in their own way.
What do you do to stay mentally healthy?
Fitness is key for me. I cycle and going out with the bike helps me clear my head and makes me feel refreshed. If I’ve got myself out and moved my body a bit, I always feel in a much better mood for it.
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