We would like to introduce you to John, a senior accountant in HLB Sydney’s Business Services team based in Manila. He is a dad to his 9-month-old baby boy, John Ellis.

Tell us a little about yourself

I’ve been working with HLB Mann Judd for more than five years. It has been an amazing journey. I really enjoy supporting our colleagues in Sydney. The firm works with a wide range of interesting clients.

Outside of work, I love spending time with my baby boy. He likes to play catch and listen to us sing karaoke every Friday.

What does a typical day in the office look like for you?

My son wakes up early, around 4:30am. I take care of his needs before heading into the office. In Manila, we start and finish early so we align with Sydney colleagues, and this approach works well for me and my family.

The day always starts with a discussion about our workflow. We then either begin preparing for or finishing projects for the remainder of the day. I like how the workflow discussions are structured at HLB. They always take into consideration the need for professional growth as well as life outside of the office, like being a father and having a young family. 

What does flexibility mean to you?

I work from home when needed. We can also take extended leave before or after Christmas shutdown.

The Philippines has the longest celebration of Christmas in the world. The extended leave gives us time to travel back to our hometowns and spend time with our families. This is very important – no one celebrates Christmas better than us!

How do you juggle work and family life?

With the help of my lovely and understanding wife. She does most of the heavy lifting when it comes to taking care of our son.

The firm has always been very supportive and recognises work-life balance. The Manila team encourages and supports one another. There are a number of parents at HLB, and we have a friendly office culture. We like to ask and share advice with each other about work and family.