Jacqueline Olling is the Senior Content Marketing Manager at Lawpath, Australia’s largest online legal platform for businesses and individuals.
1) To kick things off, could you tell us a little about your career background and current role?
I’m a lawyer by training – but a marketer by trade. I went into law school uncertain of what career path I wanted to pursue, and worked in law firms all throughout my studies.
Although I found the work interesting, I knew I wanted to go beyond the confines of a traditional legal career. I worked as a graduate lawyer at a commercial firm for a while, but found myself wanting more and more to work on the innovative side of law where really exciting things were (and are!) happening.
These days, I’m in the marketing team at Lawpath where I manage the content and PR. I’m part of the team helping grow Lawpath into Australia’s largest online legal service provider.
2) What does a day in the life look like for you? Can you take us through a recent workday?
No day is exactly the same at Lawpath, but one habit my team has gotten into is meeting first thing every morning to check-in and get ready for the day.
After this, I’ll check and respond to messages and emails and set out my priorities for the day. Throughout the day, I’ll usually have a meeting or two, and use the remainder of the time to work on my daily tasks and longer-term projects.
3) Does your current role allow for flexible or remote working? If so, how does that fit into your life and routine?
Yes, like many companies, working from home became the norm for us virtually overnight in March 2020. Currently, we’re operating on a hybrid model where we work from home for part of the week and work in the office on the other days.
Working both at home and in the office means employees stay connected to each other, but have the flexibility of working from home. We’ve also specifically formulated this model to be adaptable to ensure that the company can stay up to date with the latest health advice.
4) What does work-life balance mean to you and how do you work to achieve that goal?
Work-life balance means whatever you want it to mean. For some people, it might be taking vacations every now and then, for others it might mean exercising every morning or having quality time with loved ones.
For me, spending my weekends with loved ones ensures I come back to work refuelled. I also take time to make sure I’m active every day by going on lunchtime or evening jogs when I’m working from home.
5) In the past 12 months, have you started or stopped any routines or habits to change your life?
Yes, I started reading a lot more and actually finishing the books I picked up (which I didn’t used to do too often). Although I didn’t set a specific target, I had the loose goal to always be reading something and I’m between reading 2-3 books at the moment.
Although I’m by nature more of a non-fiction reader, I also started reading fiction and found myself able to truly enjoy reading and get lost in a novel. I also started doing long-distance jogs (7-10 kms) when the gyms were all closed and now I can’t see myself going back.
6) Do you have any favourite books, podcasts or newsletters that you’d like to recommend?
- Talking to Strangers by Malcolm Gladwell
- Prisoners of Geography by Tim Marshall
- Women and Leadership by Julia Gillard
- Into Thin Air by Jon Krakauer
- Amusing Ourselves to Death by Neil Postman
7) Are there any products, gadgets or apps that you can’t live without?
When you really think about it, so many mundane but necessary activities in our lives have been improved by apps – for example, I think I’d seriously struggle without the app which tells me what time the bus or train is coming and live tracks it’s location.
Another one is the Books app, where you can access a world of intrigue instantly without waiting the standard 5 – 7 days for shipping. Although I generally like my books hard-copy, If there’s a book I really want to get stuck into – I simply can’t wait that long.
8) If you could read an interview about work-life balance by anyone, who would that be?
I’d love to go back in time and read about the approaches to work-life balance of famous historical figures and see how it’s changed since the office became one of the predominant places of work in the 20th century.
Apparently, Charles Dickens maintained his balance between work and life by venturing out on 3-hour nature walks at lunchtime and even Beethoven would go on long walks after a few hours of work to break up his day.
I think you would find a lot of parallels in what worked for people then, and what many people prioritise as work-life balance now.
9) Do you have any last thoughts on work, life or balance that you’d like to share with our readers?
I have many, but I’ll spare the readers and be brief. I think there’s a lot of purpose to be gleaned from people’s vocations, and the idea of being content with what you do.
At the same time, I think the messages can get mixed and people get the message that work is all you’ll ever do, or that what you do is who you are. Work-life balance in my mind keeps these pillars clear and lets us keep in mind that life is meant to be multifaceted and so are people.
Photo credit: Rendy Marsono
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