Women’s History Month 2024: A Spotlight on Work-Life Integration

The term Renaissance Man was coined in the 1400s by Leon Battista Alberti, the initiator of Renaissance art theory. The term, still used today, embraces being well-rounded, consistently challenging oneself to continue to grow and improve in all facets of one’s life, and is still a sought-after ideal in our culture.

Fast forward to the latter half of the 20th century when the term “work-life balance” became a proverbial mainstay, and the concept of the ability to “have it all” became a common topic of conversation. As more and more women entered the workforce, they were impossibly tasked to balance their professional goals with home obligations while maintaining the image of perfection in both areas. Day by day, women checked all the boxes towards becoming “renaissance women” at work and on the home front, but the wins were more about surviving each day than chalking up accolades in the boardroom.

Today, working women are making the necessary paradigm shift from surviving the daily grind to thriving in their careers and at home. A lot of this progress was the result of a change in perspective. Women are moving away from the somewhat antiquated concept of balancing work and life to instead embracing the idea of work-life integration, where work and personal life are more fluidly intertwined.

In honor of Women’s History Month, Withum’s Women in Financial Services Team further examined this relatively new way of thinking by asking some of our industry’s female clients for advice on work-life integration and how they incorporate it into their own lives.

Sharing Our Stories

Elly Truesdell, Founder and Managing Partner – New Fare Partners

“The key for me is flexibility and working at all hours so that I can maximize my time with family and friends. I have a 2-year-old daughter, so I try to prioritize spending time with her in the evenings up until bedtime; this often means finishing up some work at night – and it feels very worthwhile. If you intend to run or own your own business, this willingness to work on nights and weekends is likely needed.

I also learned to say no. Part of that is considering whether the ask is something that’s contributing value to my life or others and being respectful in declining when it’s not.”

Sydney Paige Thomas, Founding General Partner – Symphonic Capital

“I work a ton! When I launched this firm, that work multiplied. Last year, I was on close to 100 flights. I made the decision to move closer to family so that I could be near them. Now, it’s so much easier to spend time with my parents, and I’m so grateful for that.”

Yana Andrea Klimova, CFO – Thirdsphere

“Proper work-life integration is not something one can truly accomplish by sneaking it in with little life hacks. It must be a commitment and a high priority that is consistently upheld. Otherwise, it is too easy to slide back because work and life responsibilities always push in.

Personally, after years of working investment banking hours and experience on the trading desk, I recognized that this lifestyle would not be sustainable for me. I spent the next three years finding a way to work remotely, which I have done ever since. This allowed me the freedom to choose my location, so I got to live in multiple beautiful places I wanted to experience.”

Lorine Pendleton, Founder and Managing Partner – 125 Venture

“This is such an important topic. I used to glorify working long hours. I still do when needed, but I’ve embraced rest and downtime. We all need time to refresh and reset. This could be working out, spending time with loved ones, or doing something one enjoys unrelated to work. Each week, I take one day where I don’t work at all. It allows me to recharge my batteries. It’s my own personal day of rest.”

Hallie Bonnar, Co-Founder and Partner – New Fare Partners

“For me, it’s all about finding time – even if that’s only 30 minutes a day during the work week – for activities where you can really switch off: cooking, yoga, walking/hiking, swimming (as of all of 2 months ago), reading or watching a good film. Returning to these things always brings some sense of restoration, and often unlocks a different perspective or creative solution to challenges I may be facing at work.”

Contact Us

For more information on this topic, please contact a member of Withum’s Women in Financial Services Team.