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Featured in SO Magazine.

A Mother's Work : Pairing parenthood with running a business.

If you want to know where the inspiration for Meaningful Recruitment came from and how being a parent impacts on the decisions of how the business is run you can read the interview with SO Magazine's Editor, Charlie Bond.

Katie Redfern is the founder of Meaningful Recruitment, and as a career coach, adviser and recruitment expert, she helps clients to realise their true potential. She’s mum to two teenagers


I felt that I needed to create a business to help people overcome barriers in their work life, which were becoming more and more obvious with the economic climate and challenges around today. My clients’ needs weren’t being met at work, and they seemed overwhelmed by similar frustrations like being ‘over performance managed’, ‘required to deliver unachievable targets’, and ‘feeling like a number rather than a person’.

Many people also needed help reconnecting to who they are ‘now’, rather than five years prior to having children or career breaks. I could relate to these feelings as I’d felt all of them too, but luckily, with my background, skills and desire to find meaning in what I do, I was able to move on. Not everyone is so lucky.

While I was starting to think about creating this business, two big events happened in close succession that spurred me on; my two dear friends, Amanda and Holly, sadly passed away in the same year. These events made me realise that life can be too short, and it needs to be lived doing things we love and jobs we love. Holly and I used to talk about the fact that roughly 30% of our lifetime is spent working, and it hammered home to me that we need to be grateful for what we have, and make sure we’re doing something that we find fulfilling and makes us feel energised.

So, Meaningful Recruitment was born, and my mission is to help people move to a work life with purpose and financial reward, in the right working environment that suits them and their personal needs. I help people rediscover who they are now and align them with career options, coaching and support, to help them navigate their way to a working environment where they’ll blossom and find meaning in what they do.


Being a mum in business helps me strike a whole new level of work-life balance. It means the world to me to go to school events, shows and sports matches, and this job has enabled me to work my diary so that I can do this. Being around for the children when they need help with homework or other things they need to talk through is important to me. We share the happy times and more complex times together – that’s why I wanted to become a mum, and I think as our world becomes more complicated and speedy, every child needs good support. I see all too clearly the benefits of the fast-paced lifestyle that people live, and also the frustrations and challenges that it brings, and I want to help those close to me and those that I work with to manage it, so that it’s a positive experience. I love that my children have learned valuable hands-on lessons of how to set up a business. They’ve been through it all with me, and given me lots of feedback and tips on my website pages. They also understand that it’s important to follow your dreams, and that they don’t come to fruition overnight – it takes persistence, time and energy.


Being a mum really does impact the decisions I make; not so much in how I run my business, but more about the clients I work with and the information I spend time researching and passing on. I want to support the organisations that are doing great things to support their community and our world. I’m interested in working with companies that are becoming B Corporation-certified, and those focusing on areas such as sustainability, climate change, helping humanity and easing suffering. I want to help the talent blossom in my generation, so that we generate momentum with positive impact, and make a difference now, so that it will help my children and their generation to support the world and our planet when their time comes.

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