Phillip is empowering people to be themselves.

How do you balance hospital appointments and school pick-ups with project deadlines and client meetings? When Phillip, Vice President of FIC Business Finance at our Sydney office, decided to start his family, our flexible work arrangements helped him to achieve his dream in the way that suited him.

New beginnings

Phillip and his partner Eric were eager to be involved in every step of their journey to parenthood. With the ambition to have biological children of their own, they contacted a surrogate mother based in California to begin the process. Since Phillip and Eric were located in Sydney, this meant nine months of frequent travel; whether it was hearing a heartbeat at the 20-week scan or being there for the birth, they always made it to California for those special moments.

For Phillip, flexible work arrangements made all the difference. The freedom he had to adapt his work schedule meant that he was able to make every trip he needed to – often at short notice. And all those flights were worth it: after much excitement and anticipation, the beautiful twins Ilana and Idan were born.

Upon his return to Sydney, Phillip decided to take six months of parental leave to look after the twins and adapt to his new life. Since he knew how important the early months are for newborns, he wanted to be sure that he returned to work when it was right for his family. Flexible parental leave meant he could spend that time at home and go back to work when he was ready.

Family time

Six years later and a lot has changed. Instead of cuddly toys and lullabies, it’s football matches and dance recitals. But one thing hasn’t changed – Phillip is still there for every one of them.

“Flexible work arrangements mean that I can spend quality time with the twins and play an active part in their life. Here, flexibility isn’t just allowed – it’s encouraged!.”

Passing it on

As Co-Chair of the dbPride (our LGBTQI-focussed Employee Resource Group), Phillip supports his colleagues by ensuring that the workplace is a welcoming and inclusive place for everyone.

The committee upholds Deutsche Bank’s commitment to LGBTQI inclusion as well as proposing new parental policies. “This is where we work out the details around policies like surrogacy, adoption and parental leave. It means a lot to me that I can help my colleagues get the support they need to fulfil their dreams.”

Phillip’s work is part of our wider effort to create a truly inclusive culture. In the words of Tamio Homna, Chief Country Officer for Deutsche Bank in Japan, and dbPride’s local Executive Sponsor: “When I learned about Phillip’s journey, it really lifted my spirits. It is an amazing story of someone pursuing his dream, with the Bank and his colleagues providing support along the way.“