#8: A Wake-Up Call: Job Sharing For Heath And Wellness


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with Mary Kaye stuart & summer hruska

Jobshare Revolution Episode 8: job share partners Mary Kaye Stuart and Sommer HruskaWorking in a cross-generational job share propelled Mary Kaye and Sommer’s momentum at work for a solid succession planning strategy for their employer—while giving both better mental and physical health.

When you think of job sharing, you might not have considered sharing a job with a partner whose background is very different from yours. It was a pleasure to interview my guest co-hosts Mary Kaye Stuart and Sommer Hruska in Episode 8, not only because they are Work Muse clients, or because I go back a long time with Mary Kaye, but because their job share is such a beautiful example of an intergenerational or cross-generational job share—in this case, pairing a Boomer and a Gen Xer.

The duo credits their generational differences with making their job share more effective. 

Mary Kaye and Sommer detail how they navigated their relationships with clients and coworkers, and why if they loved their jobs, they decided to job share in the first place. A doctor’s sage advice for longevity and a young mother’s determination to find more time for her children and homestead might have been the impetus. However, job sharing led both Mary Kaye and Sommer to enjoy other parts of life society “doesn’t deem as worthy” like exploring passions such as writing and being truly present with one’s children and self.

In our live-to-work society, Mary Kaye and Sommer’s story is the wake-up call many of us need and makes the case for considering different ways to work like sharing roles.

Grab a job share java and jump into something cozy, friend. You’ll want to dive into Episode 8, save it, and come back to it when you need it most.

Here’s a glance at this episode:

  • [3:30] Sommer and Mary Kaye’s story for how taking on a maternity leave fill-in contract role led to the duo teaming up.
  • [6:31] How sharing roles in a cross-gender job share can keep older professionals relevant while professionally developing a younger employee
  • [8:37] My history with Mary Kaye and how Work Muse helped the duo.
  • [10:15] Why job sharing is about more than working part-time.
  • [15:08] The reason Mary Kaye turned me down as a job share partner years ago, and how she had to let it go to job share down the line. And how an individualistic society hurts a collaborative work environment
  • [18:10] Why a cross-generational job share worked so well for the duo and how identity played a big part in why they were able to step into a job share mindset
  • [21:05] How job sharing factored into their well-being. What the Triangle Principle is, why this duo faced it more, and how job share’s can minimize it.
  • [27:00] How timing is a turning point for many to job share and why equality in job sharing matters, especially when one partner is coming in to share the other partner’s full-time position.
  • [36:10] How job sharing helps with work boundaries, Sommer’s second job share experience, and the job share partners’ advice to future job sharers.

Click here to listen!

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Melissa Nicholson job shared for nearly a decade and is the Founder & CEO of Work Muse. Work Muse drives the adoption of job sharing in business as a source of competitive advantage while helping individuals find work-life balance. Join the #JobshareRevolution here.



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