© Amy Amann
Lynsey Baxter greeted me with a warm smile and offer to take a seat in her cosy office. She turned away from her computer to focus fully on me for our interview, just as she would with any client.
“Lovely to have you here,” she greeted me warmly. As a nutritional health consultant, she maintains an open and welcoming approach, something she deeply values. For this young-at-heart mother of three, the personal touch is important for her new role in the health sector.
A classic start in finance
“Like a lot of people, I didn’t plan on staying in Luxembourg. I got a great temporary assignment as a project manager back in 1999 with a financial institution. That turned into nine months, then into a full-time job,” Lynsey recounted her beginnings in Luxembourg. At that time, she told me, she was young, looking for a start in the world, and open for adventure on the Continent.
It was a dream assignment: all expenses paid, training provided and a lot of fun, but also hard work that Lynsey dedicated herself to. “I started at the bottom and moved up the ladder and then moved into an Assistant Manager role, at another bank.” In this second job, while on assignment in Dublin, the New Zealand-born UK national met her husband. She came back to Luxembourg pregnant with her first child.
When she returned to work after her leave, she switched companies and enjoyed a long stint in a back-office function. “It was stable work, consistent, but not very challenging,” Lynsey recollected.
Expanding her horizons
When I asked about how that job was for her, she admitted, “the career trajectory wasn’t so good anymore. It was hard to get training and develop my career.” Acknowledging that the role wasn’t very stimulating and that new jobs were going to younger, cheaper people, she wasn’t sure of her professional outlook. She saw the unhappiness in her colleagues and knew that she didn’t want to face the same fate.
She started to pursue other interests, got a certificate in nutritional hypnotherapy and began to build a side business. This proved useful later on when the company restructured, her hours reduced, and positions eliminated. Lynsey used it as a way to finally break out of finance. With two more children, she also needed more flexibility in her schedule.
She was able to get a position in a chiropractor’s office as a receptionist and use his office for her own fledgling practice. “I didn’t find the job over ADEM; I was lucky to find my own job and make this arrangement with my boss.”
Passion and career collide
Then in early 2018, the job at the chiropractor’s ended and she was no longer eligible for any support or advice from ADEM. She made the final leap and set up her sole trader-ship. “The House of Entrepreneurship was really helpful,” she recalled, “but it was tough and I wish there was some financial support for people going into their own business.”
Lynsey and her husband tightened their belts and prepared themselves for a new, risky reality. “We’re watching our spending, which isn’t fun, but, at least I get to see my kids when they get off the bus. And I’m in a job where passion and career collide,” she smiled and gestured around her office, her own little domain.
Striking out on her own has been tricky, but she has great support from the expat community. “I’ve made amazing friends, and the women here really have each other’s backs. It’s a whole different experience and a whole new world.” And that is what we wish you Lynsey, a world of happy clients pursuing a healthy lifestyle under your guidance at All About You.
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Amy Amann is a consultant, trainer and coach supporting leaders to create strong organisations and teams. A long-term expat herself, she believes in the potential for a truly diverse and open society. She is currently the Vice President of The NETWORK, advancing professional women in Luxembourg.
Career Chats is a new feature at RTL Today focusing on careers and the labour market for expats. In this bi-weekly column, Amy Amann explores and discovers stories of what it is like for the expats here: finding a job, hiring, managing, and integrating into the professional landscape.