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June 16, 2022

Kourtney’s Negotiation

How Kourtney Fought for More Time with Her Kids

“You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take,” Wayne Gretzky


Even with a master’s in accounting and a high-paying job, Kourtney was burned out, exhausted and missing time with her kids. She is a single mom who was balancing sole custody of two young children, along with a 70-hour-per-week role. She knew she had to make a change.


When she approached her boss about scaling back her hours, he told her it was not possible to hit the milestones the team needed on a reduced schedule. At this point, she knew no dollar amount was worth this level of exhaustion.


“After exploring Worthmore’s resources, I realized I did not have to live this way,” Kourtney said. “I knew my kids had to come first. A company culture that matches your needs is exponentially better than any dollar amount. A boss who cares about you goes far beyond anything.”


Feeling empowered, Kourtney began looking for a new job. Just a few days later, a friend approached her about a role in real estate that looked like a great fit. The only caveat was it required being in the office 100 percent of the time. Kourtney was in search of a bit more flexibility; something that allowed her to work from home as needed. However, the hiring manager felt it was a priority to have Kourtney there full time. They were not sure they’d be able to make it work.


After reviewing Worthmore’s 75 Items You Can Ask for at Work, she pinpointed the four things she needed most from the job. She approached her new boss and explained the situation: she was excited about the role, but nothing mattered more than flexibility to see her kids.


“I told her what I was most excited about in the role and why I was a great fit, but I also called out the pain points,” Kourtney said. “I know my value. I just had to show her my value, then make the ask.” Together, they agreed upon work-from-home Mondays and Fridays, as well as the flexibility to leave during the day to attend her kids’ events at school, such as field day and holiday performances. She also gave Kourtney a salary boost to cover her increased summer childcare, as well as a handful of extra days off for when her kids are sick.


They agreed to try the setup for a few weeks and check in to make sure it was working for everyone. Kourtney is six weeks in and has never been happier in a job.


“If you don’t enjoy your job, you won’t do as well,” Kourtney said. “I wish all women understood that if someone is not able to give you something you need, someone else can – and will. You’re not asking the wrong question, you’re asking the wrong person.”

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