Last week, I asked women who had experiences job hunting while visibly pregnant to share their experiences. I’ll be sharing those stories in the hope that women hoping to be moms someday, or currently pregnant women can be encouraged to know that they too can apply and interview for new jobs even when they are visibly pregnant. I know that there are women who have not had very good experiences too, and I hope that through these posts, employers can learn something as well. I’m still accepting stories, so in case you have an experience, please share it with me on email@example.com
I’ll start off with Mildred Nyaguti’s experience. This is her story:
“The year was 2008, and I had applied for a job in different organizations, hoping to secure a job as a counselor. Finally, in December that year, I received calls from two different hospitals -one in Eastlands and another along Ngong road, both in Nairobi. I was seven months pregnant at that time.
I went for my first interview at the Eastlands one. The interview panel consisted of seven people and thankfully, it went well. A week later, they called me and told me that I was the best candidate and if I accepted the terms of offer, they were ready to have me start the following month (January 2009).
Second Job Interview
I then went for my second interview at the hospital along Ngong road. While my interview was scheduled for 10am, I was there as early as 8am ‘just in case’. However, they asked me to return at my appointed time of 10am. So I left and strolled to a friend’s workplace that was not too far, at least to buy time.
When I got to my friend’s place, I remember her asking me:
“Where on earth do you go for an interview with such a big stomach? Who will hire you?”
I nevertheless told her I would go at exactly as I was.
During the interview, only one person interviewed me, and I did not hesitate to inform her that I was seven months pregnant. She told me it was good that I had told her (even though she could clearly see).
Two days later, they called and informed me that I had gotten the job! Just like the other offer, I was to start the following month. Now I had two jobs to chose from. I settled for one on Ngong road.
I reported to work in January 2009 when I was eight months pregnant. I worked well without any incident until 18th February when, after going to work as usual, I later in the day felt like labor was coming. I delivered my beautiful daughter the following day on 19th. She is now an adorable 11-year-old.
Did you get your full maternity leave on full pay?
While I received my three-month maternity leave, I did not receive any pay during those months. Why? They claimed that I was on probation so I was not entitled to a salary. When I was being employed, I was employed on a permanent basis, not a contract. I didn’t ask any questions. I worked for five years at the hospital before I left.”
Thank you Mildred for sharing your story. Do you have anything to comment about Mildred’s experience? Comment down below. If you are a HR practitioner, you can also offer professional advice too. If you have a story you’d like to share, email me on firstname.lastname@example.org You can also follow me on Facebook here for more stories. Kindly subscribe to my You Tube channel here for inspiring video content, and follow me on Instagram as well here.
You may also like to see Mary Wanyoike’s inspiring story in the video below: