Surprise would have been my reaction if you had told my younger self that one day I would be part of a career comeback program. That's because I never meant to interrupt my career. Originally, I simply planned on reassessing what I wanted career-wise by taking a short break. Then, as so often happens, life intervened and my intended six month sabbatical turned into something significantly longer.

I thoroughly enjoyed the time I spent with my family and am thankful I was able to be there to help during some fairly trying moments. Still, I missed working and being around my peers and all that that represented. However, although I was committed to returning to the workforce full-time, the workforce wasn't committed to having me back.

"Potential employers could not see past the rather substantial break in my service. They weren't willing to take a chance."

I am an attorney with significant experience in employee benefits law and had worked in the financial services industry, government and elsewhere. Potential employers though, could not see past the rather substantial break in my service. They either weren't willing to take a chance or just didn't know what to do with me.

That is why I am so thrilled to be part of the inaugural UBS Career Comeback program. Not only was UBS willing to look past my time off and consider all I still had to offer, but through their well-thought-out program, I was set up to succeed.

My cohort consisted of 12 women who, like me, had worked in financial services and then for a variety of reasons had taken time away from their professional lives. We were all nervous about what coming back at this point would mean. Would people take us seriously, would the work we were asked to do be meaningful and were we even capable of making the transition? Through a seminar and an intensive week of orientation, we were coached and taught that yes, we could. We could return and we could be successful through the UBS Career Comeback Program.

I am now once again working as an attorney in employee benefits. As part of the program I was assigned by my supervisor both a "buddy" and a "mentor". These three women have been wonderfully supportive in helping me navigate what for me is uncharted territory.

Even though I can call on many of the skills I previously developed—there's no getting away from the fact that not only have things changed, but UBS has a unique language and way of doing things. I have said that when sitting in meetings, I often feel like everyone is speaking Spanish and I only have my rusty high school skills. Still, every day my comprehension increases. Just give me a little more time and I think I'll be completely fluent!

About Louise

Louise is an attorney in the legal department of Wealth Management Americas. She is helping ensure that the UBS pension and benefit plan businesses are carried out in accordance with applicable law. She was and is very involved with her local school district. She most enjoys spending time with her family and friends and, during free time, likes cycling with her husband and (sometimes) even her teenage son.

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