Wonderwall360 Hump Day Careers: Taking a sabbatical


I recently took a sabbatical. It is something, I had never really considered doing prior to redundancy. During my time at my job prior to redundancy, I had bought a house, sold that and bought another; so I was on a very traditional route of building a career in tandem with climbing the property ladder. Having interrupted that pathway; it seemed a good time to do something I wanted to do rather then than what I thought I should do. In my case I took a month of to work at the Edinburgh fringe, which allowed me to see lots of shows.


Taking a sabbatical is something I would recommend for anyone. Taking an extended period away can give you new perspectives and is refreshing.


I had to ask two employees to do it. For one I justified saying my work projects were not urgent, therefore one month would not make difference; for that one I e-mailed clients working with so that they were aware I would not be available and prioritised according to their needs before I went. My other employer who work in a café for took, more persuading; they wanted to know how it would help development; I therefore wrote a long list of how it will help my customer service skills. During my time away, I visited two other braches of their café and posted photos on our internal google+ (corporate social media). When I have my performance review I will write about how it has developed me; therefore hopefully they eill support the idea in others.

Wonderwall360 Careers: Edinburgh Fringe for performers

For unknown performers, Edinburgh fringe at least finically is a strange career choice. Most unknown performers, do not make money performing at the fringe. It costs thousands to put on a show with renting space to host it, time to develop, props, lighting. Then there is cost of accommodation in Edinburgh such as the accommodation. Most performers make a loss at the festival. Therefore, it is amazing that the festival keeps going. I guess the performers do it regardless of finical risk because:

  • Chance may lead to bigger things.
  • It is good forum to try ideas.
  • The chance to showcase talents.
  • The festival experience.

My tips for success (disclaimer I’m not an expert!)

  • Shows starting with a number of A or even AA appear closer to front of fringe brochure so more people see.
  • Be punchy with show title; do not start with The.
  • Pick venue wisely where passing trade and staff who will promote show.
  • Support other performers and they may return favour; it helps get word of mouth for show.
  • Flyer!!!! Gimmicks when flying like half price tickets or pin badges helps get an audience.
  • Get reviews from media to raise awareness.
  • Use social media to get awareness.
  • If newbie do not self title show; it looks egotistical.
  • Be nice to people in venue to encourage them to help you. Someone was rude to me, insisting I found space for their flyers; I did put flyers out, but as rude no chance I was going to their show or highlighting show to anyone.
  • Be aware probably will lose money.
  • Once there try and enjoy experience, accepting as expected losing money.
  • Take vitamins when at Fringe as Fringe flu not nice!

Wonderwall360 HumpDay Careers

Following on, from my post a few weeks ago about girls / princesses being scientist. My story for this week’s story is about a female scientist. A very successful scientist that goes down in history and earns lots of her own money for exotic holidays.

Princess enjoyed paradise. Post curing cancer.

To enter a 6 word story for this week’s prompt Fantasy, pop over to Kirsty’s blog.l before voting begins tomorrow 9pm GMT.


If you have career advice or experience to share on a Hump day, I would be happy to share it.

Wonderwall360 Hump Day Careers: Gig economy

I think with current economy more people will be faced with juggling jobs at some point in their lives. After 11 years in a company I joined a year after graduating; I was made redundant last July.

I’m have been juggling two jobs. I’m taking some unpaid leave from both jobs, in order to work in Endinburgh over summer to experience the festival and to get a break from the manic juggling.

Here is another example of someone in the gigging economy:


Wonderwall360 Hump Day carrers: Ideas for jobs in the pharmaceutical industry

A tip I recently came across to generate job ideas is to think about everything that needs to be done around a particular area for example to make and sell a bottle of cider; think it thorough from planting of  apple tree to selling the bottle. This way of thinking for the pharmaceutical industry produces a plethora of ideas for me but may not be so obvious for someone outside the industry. Would anyone like to share examples from their industry?

First steps is developing the drug. There will be researchers investigating disease areas, chemists looking at different compounds. Following identification of a drug there will be lots of testing to make sure it is safe and effective. Some people are not comfortable with the idea that some of the initial testing will be on animals, but that is done so that humans are not put at risk. These stages involve scientists from a range of disciplines working in labs, non laboratory researchers and technicians that assist in the laboratory.

Before a drug is given to any human there is lots of documentation to produce as risk to humans have to be minimised therefore the aims of the drug trails need to be carefully  considered, the trial designed and ethic committees consulted. Some of the roles this involves are medical writers, statisticians and those involved with ethics committees.

Once the drug is given to humans this involves medical professionals to look after healthy volunteers / patients s applicable; i.e doctors, nurses and perhaps highly trained clinical trails assistants. I have been a clinical trails assistant doing tests like blood pressure, ECG and taking blood from cannulaes. All the date collected is collected in special forms called case report forms by the medical professionals. These forms need to be checked by monitors to ensure correctly completed. The data on the forms are analysed by data managers like I have been. often put into databases which involves programmers. The safety profile of the drug is monitored by pharmocoviglance personal, again an area I have been involved with. There will various types of project managers, and staff involved with ensuring the data reaches the data managers in a timely manner.

As a trial is running and after completed there will be analyses by statisticians and results ar documented by medical writers. There is ethical considerations throughout which provides job roles.

This may sounmd completx already but, does not vfeature every job role involved. All the above is before a drug gets on the market when need people to manufacture, distribute, people to market it, pharmacists to dispense etc…

Wonderwall360 Careers: Working Mum’s in acting careers

The below article from the BBC shares thought from Mother and actress (IT crown and humans) Katherine Parkinson and her current boss Tamara Harvey, who has been documenting her juggles as a working Mum using the Twitter hashtag #workingmum

working mums

A BBC article, about possibility of job shares in theatres. I think it could cause disappointment if some people missed out on seeing a big star; but if it was clear which performer in each show at time of booking that is fine. Also when not heard of either name that is fine.

theatre job shares

Wonderwall360 Careers: How to make it fair when women take a career break

Before taking a maternity break Serena Williams was tennis 🎾 number 1. Previously she would have had to start from scratch to get her rankings and being at the bottom of the rankings would have meant she was ineligible for competitions like Wimbledon. In sport when you can only play for a limited time which, coincides with fertile time, taking time out to have a child is a risk to career but, then if that means relinquishing all that have previously achieved that feels unjust.

On the other hand will tennis as with other careers, it is not really fair if someone who has taken a career break to be treated same as someone who has worked continuously. If parents miss promotions when on career breaks then ultimately they can end up in a lower position being paid less than someone who started at the same time as them.

Any thoughts regarding this dilemma?

In the last paragraph I deliberately said parents rather than Mother although in UK despite, the introduction of shared parental leave it is more women than men that take career breaks to care for infants and subsequently work part time. One fact putting off Father’s doing the same is the damage to career of taking a career break. Therefore this is an important topic for all, regardless of whether parents or potential parents as it is about equity for those who reject career breaks and those who do not.

Wonderwall360 Hump Day Careers: Working women


From the pictures shared the last two weeks think it is clear I believe women can aim higher than being a princess, yet still dress up in a range of roles, earning her own money. Currently, though it is challenging for women who want to be Mum’s and work. By in large it is Mum’s who have to do the biggest balancing act; yes there parents can take shared leave in UK, but it is not yet popular in the UK. I believe in Scandinavia it is more common for Father’s to take away from their careers to care for children; has any one experience of this? Any other experiences to share? Feel free to write a guest post,

I previously write this post on the subject for International Women’s Day.

International women’s day 8th Mar 2018: Balancing Work and Children