If You Want It, You Buy It – How it all started


An interview with Lisa Gomes

Recently, we sat down with Lisa Gomes, a career mom, and asked her a few questions about how she got started and her experience in balancing work and family life.

1. How did your career come about?

The phrase I heard before entering the workforce, “If you want it you buy it”, is probably the best thing that ever happened to me; because it started my love for work and excelling in the workforce.  I was a junior in high school when I landed my first job.  Not just any job, my title was “Happiness Facilitator”; and no, this is not a joke.  I worked at a local fun center where I was in charge of creating a happy environment for children on their birthdays.  Part of my duties involved cutting cake, singing, and sharing jokes.  At the time, I would roller skate to and from work since I didn’t have my license yet.  After graduating high school, I went off to junior college where I would attend school and work between studies.  I started working as a receptionist at age 18, and within two years I was an Office Manager where I was responsible for Billing, Accounts Receivables, Purchasing, Petty Cash, Collections, and Sales.  At age 24, I got married and knew kids were in my future, but I wanted to enjoy time with my husband first.  Later, I found a new job in Sales, selling aftermarket parts. It was during this time, that we decided to start a family.

2. What challenges did you encounter as a new working mom?

While pregnant, I was asked if I was a ‘mommy mom’ or ‘business mom’. My reply, “Why can’t I be both”?  There are challenges in having children and working full-time. They vary from finding a great sitter/daycare provider that you trust and afford, to the angst and heartache in leaving your newborn in the care of someone else (this of course varies from mother to mother).  The other challenge is taking sick days at work, when your baby is not feeling well. In my experience, finding a flexible employer and being able to communicate with them can help solve various challenges.

3. What advice would you offer women that are balancing work and family?

Put family first, and work second.  While I’m sure you are working hard for your family and their future, there are moments that you can never get back with your children so it’s important to embrace the present as well.

4. Do you think career women can ‘have it all’ so to speak, or do you think there are trade-offs?

Yes, but there are trade-offs naturally.  Do we miss out on the little things, such as the “firsts” i.e. walking, rolling over, and talking?  Yes, sometimes we do.  But eventually we experience and record them in the baby books. In my situation, my daughter absorbed more from the daycare provider than she would have from me since I was working; learning how to count, write her name, and spell.  Did I miss out? No, because she is now thriving in school and we’re very close. Yes, I win!

About Lisa Gomes

Lisa Gomes

Lisa Gomes is a career mother. She has experience in every office aspect, specializing in sales, and has also dabbled in HR. She loves to run, and have fun with her amazing little girls and husband. They enjoy bike rides and road trip adventures. Lisa loves working and teaching her girls the importance of hard work. She is also a little obsessed with organization and routines; some call her OCD! She can be contacted at Alillisa53@aol.com

About What’s For Work?

The Premier Career Site for Women. Real People. Real Connections. Real Support. — with everything in one place! www.whatsforwork.com

Mission: To redefine how employers acquire talent and women find and preserve their dream jobs using innovative technologies.

Company Overview: What’s For Work? helps women take control of their careers by providing a rich set of tools that develop their knowledge, skills and confidence they need to land and preserve their dream jobs.
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Transitioning from Career to Stay-at-Home Mom


by Teri Hockett

Whew! Moms who stay at home… what a big decision you made, and I know it was not easy. There are many considerations when you are weighing the options of stepping out of the paid workforce; financial, emotional, and career to say the least. For me, the overriding issue was guilt!

I was struggling with all the guilt that comes with being a working mom. When I was at work I was feeling guilty about not being home with my children; when I was at home I was feeling guilty about not getting my work done, or letting my colleagues and boss down.

It seemed like my mind was never in the same place as my body. Instead of being able to really enjoy each moment, all I could focus on was what wasn’t getting done.

When the opportunity presented itself after the birth of my second child I jumped on it. My husband and I worked out the details and I was no longer working for pay. I had great plans in addition to being a full-time mom. I was going to organize the family photos, make play dates for the girls, have a regular workout schedule, coffee with friends, and keep the house clean.

Years later those pictures are still not organized, but I did relish every moment with my girls. We have many wonderful memories. I loved being able to walk them to and from school, and be there for homework with homemade cookies; it was picture-perfect.

After about ten years in this ideal situation I was ready to go back to work part-time. Now came the difficult part, trying to reconstruct my previous work life. Having gone thru the process, I discovered some things below that would of been good to know back then.

4 Tips Before and During the Transition

1. Take a Snap Shot

Write and/or update your resume as soon as you make the transition, while all the information is readily available. While things are fresh in your mind you want to think about your Problem Solution Results (PSRs); what were the problems that you were presented with at work, what solutions did you implement, and what were the results of your actions. It’s also ideal to capture your Statistical Measurable Results (SMRs) for each position that you have held.

2. Stay Connected

Stay in contact with colleagues, regardless if you’re working with them or not. Make sure to attend business seminars and conferences to stay current in your field/industry. Consider continuing your education as well.

3. Keep your Certifications

Find out what it takes to keep any certifications or licenses you currently hold. It will be easier to keep your certifications valid, compared to reinstating them. Plus, you will keep your knowledge current.

4. Capture Valuable Information

As a stay-at-home mom you will have plenty of opportunities to get involved in a variety of activities. Such as:

  • Caring for an ill family member or aging parent.
  • Managing a home remodeling project.
  • Raising your children and running a household.
  • Volunteering: PTA, Cub Scout Leader, charities.

It’s all valuable information about you. You control whether or not this information appears on your resume. However the skills and experiences during your time off say something about you and help when you are ready to re-enter the workforce. Begin by creating a list of what you have done and the skills you have used, such as:

  • Organized information
  • Mentored or managed others
  • Oversaw a budget
  • Contracted with other companies

Think about how often you handled these activities and the value they contribute. You are now in possession of job-worthy skills that can be successfully translated into a new job opportunity. Throughout this process, update your resume. Whether or not you will ever return to the paid workforce is typically your decision (other times it is dictated by circumstances), but wouldn’t it be great if you were prepared.

What’s For Work? is here to help you prepare, by providing you a place to document your past work experience and capture what you are currently doing while it’s still fresh in your mind. Let us help you translate the value of your skills and experience to your profile and resume, so you’ll be ready down the road.

About the Author

Teri Hockett

Teri Hockett is the CEO of What’s For Work? The Premier Career Site for Women.

About What’s For Work?

The Premier Career Site for Women. Real People. Real Connections. Real Support. — with everything in one place! http://www.whatsforwork.com/

Mission: To redefine how employers acquire talent and women find and preserve their dream jobs using innovative technologies.

Company Overview: What’s For Work? helps women take control of their careers by providing a rich set of tools that develop their knowledge, skills and confidence they need to land and preserve their dream jobs.
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