One common question women ask us is: how do I document everything for my manager?
Welcome to your parental leave plan.
Essentially, this is a plan for you and about you. It will mean different things to different people and in different roles. It will cover your details, your role, your career and how you will manage it given you are now pregnant. It will lay out the next 18-24 months: before, during and after parental leave from a career perspective.
This is your document and is not legally required, but could be the smartest career move you make. Think about from your manager’s perspective. They are most likely juggling many priorities, team members and requirements from senior management, and so don’t have time to understand the details surrounding your leave. Consider this a simple tool for them (and possibly others) to refer to in your absence. We recommend also sharing it with your mentor or sponsor if you have one.
Of course, you will still have a detailed handover plan for your team and your own keep in touch plan (stay in touch template). The parental leave plan is a reference document for your manager that will enable them to find everything they need in your absence. Even simple things like your personal email and a reminder of how you want to stay in touch. Below you will find a list of the areas we think should be included:
- Your personal details
- Your pregnancy details (due date, last day, expected return date)
- Requested leave
- Your keep in touch plan: How you would like be kept updated by your manager
- Specific team meetings, dinners, team days etc that you would like to me included in whilst on leave
- Handover plan (key items, deliverables and things your manager needs to know)
We recommend downloading our template (parental leave plan template) and having a play around with it. We have created this as a word document because we want to give you the flexibility to delete lines, add lines and make it your own. Everyone has different needs so think of this as a start.
At Circle In, we want to make the process easier for you. This also means you making the process easier for your manager. Invest some time in this and we have no doubt your manager will thank you for it.
Written by the team at Circle In