From Twirlywoos to Twitter feeds - NABS
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From Twirlywoos to Twitter feeds

Words by Victoria Hill, Freelance Social Media Manager & Consultant and mum of one

“Media professional with over 15 years’ experience in Digital-Out-Of-Home, content management, PR and communications for hire.”

Sounds pretty good doesn’t it?

But hang on – this media professional just so happens to be a mum of one who needs flexible and remote working.

Oh….

Not that this should make any difference of course. Okay so I might be able to name ALL of the Twirlywoos but I have also worked really hard to maintain my media career since graduating from university back in 2000 (yikes!)

My career has always been important to me, I went back to work just six months after my daughter was born. I was determined that being a mum would not stop me working. A year after going back to work I found myself unexpectedly being made redundant. This had never happened to me before. Once the shock had subsided and the realisation that I was unemployed had sunk in, I felt anxious and concerned about my career and family’s future.

Being a bit of a Facebook fiend I first spotted an advert for Digital Mums on my newsfeed. One click on the website later and my real ‘hallelujah’ moment struck. It was as if this course was handwritten just for me. It was perfect.

Digital Mums retrain mums with media or PR experience to become fully qualified freelance social media managers. The course matches students with a real live business during the training. So it’s not all virtual or textbook learning. You are actually learning on-the-job live on social media platforms. This experience alone is invaluable. Students work with their client to design and execute a bespoke social media campaign during their training. Add to the mix an amazing support network in the form of peer groups and course tutors during the course. This was DEFINITELY the right course for me!

I knew that the course would help me pick myself back up after being made redundant. I felt that it would give me the confidence I needed to get me back to work as a working parent. So I picked up the phone and spoke to Digital Mums’ Director Kathryn Tyler who told me all about the course and the qualification I would receive at the end. Completing the Strategic Social Media Management course would give me the opportunity to go freelance and live the flexible working dream. Kathryn suggested that I contact NABS to enquire about an Upskilling Grant, and I am so pleased that I took Kathryn’s advice and rang NABS that very same day.

NABS works hard to promote their fantastic Working Parents Initiative. The initiative offers working parents and their employers advice, support and guidance to help industry mums and dads be the best they can be both at work and at home, and part of that is to help them get back onto the career path they want. Whether it’s advice on flexible working or completely retraining for a different career, NABS supports working parents through their Advice Line, coaching, Masterclasses, mentoring and Upskilling Grants.

Without the Upskilling Grant I received from NABS through their Working Parents Initiative, I wouldn’t have been able to complete the Digital Mums course and be where I am today. I graduated in September 2015 and haven’t looked back since. The Digital Mums course has given me new skills and more importantly the confidence in my abilities to go back out there, pitch and win clients for myself.

Since graduating I have worked with a range of clients such as a Digital-Out-Of-Home start-up, a local community website and a small charity providing them with social media management and consultancy. I have also developed and run bespoke social media workshops for clients. The opportunities for me now with my new set of skills and strong support from the #DMCollective (Digital Mums alumni) are exciting and endless.

I am no longer anxious or worried about my career and my family’s future. I am a proud working Digital Mum. I am so grateful to NABS for giving me the opportunity, and I would strongly advise any working parent considering retraining to apply for a NABS Upskilling Grant and go for it!

@victoriahillLDN

https://uk.linkedin.com/in/victoriahaleshill

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