Case study: Sidley Austin LLP supporting working dads


Sidley Austin LLP, a global law firm, believes in supporting working dads. This includes men who are about to go through the huge transition of becoming a father, or men who are already fathers and want to achieve a better work-family balance.

Inclusive Working Culture – Supporting Working Dads

Parental transition coaching, which had traditionally only been offered to women taking maternity leave, is now offered to all lawyers working for the firm, with HR recognising that dads are also going through a huge life change and need the same level of support and recognition as new mothers do.

These parental transition coaching sessions, provided by Parent & Professional, consist of four one-to-one coaching sessions from a qualified career coach, with the theme for discussion very much led by what each individual is experiencing at that point.

Working dads have found it useful to talk about everything from coping with sleep deprivation to better managing work with family needs, as well as preparing their careers for partnership while meeting the needs of a young family.

Supporting working dads includes any thing from coaching sessions, to personality profiling tools and self-development exercises. They are also available to help those taking part develop a better understanding of themselves and what they can do to make their personal and professional lives more fulfilling.

Jerry Gallagher, Director of HR at Sidley, says: “With many new fathers increasingly taking longer periods of shared parental leave, fatherhood presents more challenges than it has in the past. The coaching programme provided by Parent & Professional has helped fathers adjust to their new responsibilities and been very well received.”

Kellie Wade, HR advisor for Sidley, adds, “It’s great to be able to offer this benefit to help working fathers balance family responsibilities with professional demands. The feedback received has been overwhelmingly positive.”

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