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Mizuho’s support for women returners

 October 20, 2016

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Sonia Kanu works in Travel Management for Mizuho Bank.  “Mizuho has always been a flexible and supportive employer. Without their support, I believe my return to work could have been a stressful experience - this in turn has made me very grateful and loyal to Mizuho,” Sonia explains.

Sonia originally joined the corporate banking side of Mizuho in London, as a contractor in 2002, working on a number of consolidation projects as part of the post-merger transition phase (Mizuho Bank was formed following the merger in 2000 of three large Japanese banks - Fuji Bank, DKB and the Industrial Bank of Japan).  After four years, Sonia joined Mizuho on a permanent basis as a Project Coordinator within the Europe IT & Operations Department. “My role has always continued to evolve, which has motivated me to take on new challenges,” Sonia says.

Phased return to work

In 2010, after Sonia went on maternity leave, Mizuho supported a phased return to work,   “Mizuho allowed me to reduce my hours by leaving at 2:30pm two days a week, giving me the opportunity to collect my daughter from school and be part of her life, which was hugely valued.  The whole process was effortless, which made me feel confident I could manage. This flexible approach has been vital for my career and family. It has made me want to go that extra mile at work“, Sonia shares.

Professional and personal growth

Between February 2011 and January 2016, Sonia thrived within the IT & Operations department, and her hours gradually increased over time, with some flexibility if required. “Flexibility works both ways, so some days I work late, others I may start later to attend a school assembly or sports day,” Sonia adds.

In January 2016, Sonia moved to an exciting new role, and is now responsible for all of Mizuho Bank's travel management in the UK. “At Mizuho there is so much scope for personal and professional growth,” Sonia explains, “My roles at Mizuho have all been exciting and hugely varied. The company has always supported my career growth and offered fabulous new opportunities.”

Work-life balance

“The transition back to work after a career break does not need to be difficult,” Sonia advises.  “If you communicate your requirements and maintain a flexible and positive outlook you can uphold a healthy work / life balance. It helps to have a supportive and flexible employer like Mizuho, of course!”


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