2018 - Will you be a dog or a dragon?

2018 will be the Chinese year of the Dog, it is the symbol of loyalty and honesty. People born in the Year of the Dog possess the best traits of human nature. They are honest, friendly, faithful, loyal, smart, straightforward, venerable and have a strong sense of responsibility, what lovely traits for a child born in 2018.

But what about people born at the turn of the century, who are turning 18 this year? 2000 was year of the Dragon, representing authority and good fortune. People born in the year of the Dragon are powerful, kind-hearted, successful, innovative, brave, healthy courageous and enterprising.

13 December 2017

What are the prospects for these dragons, Millennials, who are trailblazer for using technology in new and innovative ways, who will bring more automation as well as demand a better work life balance. Some of them will be going off to University or starting gap years, some will be looking for work or may have already started work, they are born in a great year, with good fortune, courage and success on their side.

With record low unemployment, they have more competition than ever for jobs and work experience, they are being forced to work for free in internships and their parents are required more than ever before to continue to support them, including providing them somewhere to live so that they can save to buy a house or afford good quality housing.

For me, at 18 I had my place at Uni waiting, I decided to take a gap year, travel a bit and do some work, but then everything changed! I moved out of home and in with my best friend, we got jobs (that we weren’t that serious about!) and got our first paychecks! We worked hard and also had the energy to be out most nights too (those were the days!)

And the travelling? It didn’t happen, after a while I got more serious about my job, in fact I loved it  and the team I worked with, I’d started at the bottom in a small team in a bank branch and in six months has got my first of many promotions. And the Uni place? I didn’t go! If I was honest with myself I wasn’t a born academic, I was more motivated by the life I already had, and when I visited friends at uni who had no money and mounting debts it just didn’t appeal to me.

Any regrets? None! I am proud that I got success without going to Uni, I’ve never needed a degree to do any of the jobs I wanted to do and have studied and trained for qualifications that were relevant to my roles along the way. I've travelled on and off since, before having kids and will continue to do so as they get older.

And my friend and first flat mate? We are still great friends, she is a senior manager for a top four accountancy firm, working on complex large scale insolvencies, she works 3 days a week, her husband is a teacher who works 4 days a week, balance isn’t easy but they make it work!Kristal McNamara and Shelley Snelson

And now? As a mum and a senior business leader, I was frustrated at the lack or opportunities for me and others. Shelley and I met at our previous employer and launched Flexology to be trailblazers, to help show employers the benefits of flexible working, from evidence and our experience, and open up more opportunities for flexible working in the South West.


What’s next - we have a series of events coming up focusing on the key areas most regularly raised by our candidates, our first event on 16th January centres around Job sharing and the next event will focus on confidence.

Let’s all be more ‘dog’ this year, honest, friendly, faithful, loyal, smart and also a bit more ‘dragon’ successful, innovative, brave, courageous and enterprising! Best wishes for 2018!

I'd love to hear your thoughts and journeys, get in touch kristal@flexology.co.uk

Kristal McNamara, Director, Flexology


Flexology are based in Bristol and are the Flexible Working experts in the South West.