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Fast Parents: Roger Benson talks flexible work, deconstructs 'work-life balance’

Fast is growing – and it’s not just because we’re on a hiring spree.

Many Fastronauts are becoming parents, and we couldn’t be more excited. At Fast, we celebrate and support the whole person. What does that look like? We give Fastronauts the freedom to own where they work, how they work, and when they work. We offer other family-friendly benefits, including unlimited paid vacation, comprehensive insurance (99% of premiums covered by Fast), and up to 12 weeks of paid parental leave.

We asked parents on our team how they’re able to juggle family and other responsibilities while also deftly excelling at work. Here’s what Vice President of Sales (Growth) Roger Benson had to say:

Roger Benson (left) and his family

How do you manage home life and work life?

The flexible nature of the work schedule is really helpful for me. My wife works full time as well, and we don't have full-time childcare, so for me, spending my mornings with my children and not feeling like someone's looking for me or I'm in any way sacrificing productivity to do it has been very meaningful. My son, Charlie, wakes up at 7:30 a.m., and so from like 7:30-9 a.m., we can hang out with him, and because we're not commuting, we can really stretch that time and focus, and I can still get connected at the beginning of the workday to support the folks I have on the East and West coasts.

What were your work schedules like at previous employers?

I was at my previous employer for 11 years, and it was a full-time office job right up until the pandemic, and then we went fully remote. They remained sort of fully remote-first and are eventually going to trend toward more of a hybrid, flexible model. But during my early days of remote work there, it was similar to Fast, but Fast had much more flexibility in terms of when I was expected to be online and connected, because I was managing a team that was previously in the office full time.

With Mei (Liu, Product Manager at Fast) running our remote-first initiative and with Domm (Holland, Co-Founder and CEO at Fast) and Allison’s (Barr Allen, Co-Founder and COO at Fast) intent to build a proper remote-first culture, it feels much more welcoming.

What’s the best advice you’ve received for managing a full-time job and your other responsibilities?

Even though people talk a lot about work-life balance, I think it always has to by default be family first. I think if you really want it to work, they're not co-equal partners, work and life. And I think knowing that this company, even though we're young in our overall life cycle, is a relatively mature group of people who get it. There's no pressure to have your camera on during meetings, there's no judgment if a kid shows up in the picture or can be heard in the background, or if I have to put a call on mute for a second while I put my kid down for a nap or pick them up from a nap. Culturally, the fact that that's already sort of woven through the fabric of what we're building, it gives me a lot of optimism.

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