Penelope the Promoter

Role title:
Senior research scientist
Permanent, full time
Where they’re at with flexible working:

I am able to do this job to the best of my ability because I can adapt my hours and work to suit my life. I work in a great team of people with a supportive manager with whom I collaborate with in various ways, even from different locations. I get to do a job that I love, while I also have time to do the things I enjoy in my personal life

Penelope's Story

Penelope lives outside Orange with her husband Greg, three school-aged children, two dogs and a cat. They moved from Sydney so they could afford a place with more room and a backyard, and to be close to Greg’s parents.

Penelope is always busy with work, family and other commitments. She helps out at the kids’ school and her family are committed members of a local football and netball club, where they are involved in coaching, fundraisers and events. She likes to read in her downtime, but often settles for audio books when her life is too busy.

Her attitude to flexible working

  • Penelope is both an advocate and active user of flexible working who knows from experience that teams don’t have to sit side by side to deliver. Statistics show that people are more engaged and motivated to work if they work flexibly.
  • She feels flexible working is seen as more complicated than it actually is. It’s about finding arrangements and systems that work for the team.
  • Thinking creatively when it comes to staying in contact with her team, and planning and sharing work, can help make flexible working simpler.
  • The trust that she has in her team, and the trust they have in her to work together and contribute to delivering means they can achieve great results while working flexibly.

Penelope’s work style

  • Positive, professional and efficient worker who is an expert in the field of water research
  • Collaborative, trusting and inclusive, and has leadership qualities that result in her acting in higher positions regularly
  • Does a mixture of working from home and in the office, as well as sometimes traveling long distances to conduct her work
  • Hard worker who, despite being busy, finds time to share her knowledge and work collaboratively with her team to conduct their research

How to engage Penelope in flexible working?

  • Guide implementation
    • Provide Penelope with tools and processes so she can be a leader in showing the positive effects that flexible working can have on employees, business and the community.
    • Give her the opportunity to actively promote flexible working in her organisation, such as through presentations, as a case study on your agency website, coaching other managers and promoting it through departmental networks.
    • Provide a platform that can help Penelope to mentor others in how to successfully arrange and implement flexible working practices, to help her agency meet this policy commitment.
    • Encourage continued conversation with her manager and her team about her flexible working arrangements to make sure they continue to be suitable, and allow for adjustments if required.

Key messages for Penelope

  • Flexible working doesn’t have to be complicated or hard to arrange
  • Flexible working should be mutually beneficial
  • Successful flexible working arrangements can be shared to help show others the benefits

What flexible working might be relevant to Penelope?

  • Remote working
  • Compressed hours
  • Adjusting start and finish times

The Public Service Commission acknowledges the Gadigal people of the Eora Nation, the traditional custodians of the land on which our office stands.