I was very honoured to be selected as a Parliamentary Role Model. I have been lucky in my career to have worked with some tremendously committed and supportive colleagues across the House, who have been generous with their time and their readiness to explain their work. These individuals have been my role models and, now, as a team leader, I have looked to emulate their example.
An individual’s priorities and needs will change during the course of their career due to changing career aspirations, personal circumstances, family arrangements and responsibilities, or their own health. For me, fatherhood has meant that work has to fit into a space that is constrained by wanting to spend time with my family and needing to juggle my work and caring commitments. I don’t think that this change has made me any less effective in my job but I am grateful to the colleagues who have shown, and continue to show me, the understanding I need when a bout of chicken pox or a school sports day interrupts the work routine.
Staff across both the House of Commons and the House of Lords show incredible dedication and flexibility and it is right on both moral and business grounds that the House supports its staff and responds to their changing needs to ensure that they can continue to be the best that they can be.
I hope that this campaign will demonstrate the diversity of experiences of staff in Parliament. If each story from one of those covered in this campaign can give one member of staff pause for thought about how they manage their work/life balance, or an added boost of confidence in facing their own challenges, then it will have been a success.
James's role in Parliament
I am Clerk to the Treasury Committee in the House of Commons. I have overall responsibility for managing the Committee staff team and for all the team’s support for the Committee.