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We Don't Mind The Gap!

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We Don't Mind The Gap!

On Tuesday 18th April, the Institute of Internal Communication (IoIC) gathered for their Don’t Mind the Gap event, designed to address the proverbial elephant in the room… career breaks and changes in direction!

With an audience of internal comms talent and some of us joining from VMA GROUP, we heard stories and advice from several professionals who have experienced a career break or change. From David Cunningham (Communications Director at HSBC), who discussed work policy regarding adoption leave, to Neil Rodger (former Communications Lead at the Francis Crick Institute) who, after a shift in personal circumstances, founded his own comms agency, Lifted Communications; the event truly captured a range of situations and sparked an engaging discussion. 

Other panel members included Lizzie Martin who following a career at John Lewis, has since established her own successful coaching business (Work Life Mother) for parent returners. We also heard from Eleanor Tweddell. After returning to work from maternity leave, Eleanor took voluntary redundancy from Vodafone and has since built an impressive portfolio career and written her own book, Why Losing Your Job (could be the best thing that ever happened to you).

Don’t Mind the Gap posed a refreshing topic of conversation, uncovering the worries, the frustrations and the excitement of new opportunities and directions that can come with a break or change in your career. Kindly hosted by Nicki Dyson (Group Head of Internal Communications and Engagement at Smart Pension), the event provided a welcoming space to discuss how gaps in employment can create the cliché rollercoaster of emotions, but can also be a catalyst for new career ventures.

Whether you are a returning to work life as a new parent, returning after caring for a loved one or navigating your career in unexpected personal circumstances, hearing from the panel certainly highlighted the importance of not feeling victimised and being able to understand your own values and goals, both personally and professionally.

Finally, as a specialist recruitment consultant, I feel it’s important to emphasise an understanding that every individual will have their own personal circumstances. At VMA GROUP, we take time to listen and get to know our candidates - as long as you can tell your story and own your narrative, we won’t mind the gap! 

Written by: Anna Newsome, Recruitment Consultant, Internal Communications


VMA GROUP is a leading international interim, contract, temporary and permanent recruitment and executive search specialist. We are specifically focused on providing support to the communications, marketing, digital and change communities.

Our specialist practice areas cover: communications, corporate communications, internal communications, change communications, PR, media relations, financial communications, CSR, public affairs, investor relations, marketing, brand, digital marketing and agency services.

We have a reputation for providing expert consultancy services and advice, supported by in-depth knowledge of the professions we recruit for. Our thought leadership and benchmarking studies have become go-to resources for the communications, marketing, digital and change industries, supporting planning and decision-making for organisations of all shapes and sizes.

In the UK, VMA GROUP has offices in London, Bristol and Manchester and in Europe, VMA GROUP has offices in Amsterdam and Brussels, but we work with organisations and individuals on a global basis.

VMA GROUP is committed to equal opportunities and is a Diversity Pledged Recruiter.