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If it weren’t for the opportunities offered by the bank, I would never have made it to where I am today.

My name is Marian Faust, I’m 43 years old, I’m in a civil partnership and I have no children.

I joined BGL BNP Paribas on 2 January 1999.

I started my career in the Securities Department, where I had the chance to work in a range of roles. After that, I joined the teams in charge of Digital Banking and then Marketing.

Animal well-being and giving back to animals have always been my passions. In late 2011, I started studying again at weekends and in my time off. My field might seem a bit unusual to most people, but to me it was the obvious choice: osteopathy for animals.

Osteopathy is a gentle therapeutic method that aims to restore the body’s natural balance through a holistic approach built around manual procedures designed to be gentle and non-invasive: using just their hands, osteopaths work on animals’ circulation and mobility.

“Being allowed to reduce my working hours has been very important for me.”

I was very lucky that my managers supported me and I was able to combine my professional life with my life as a student. Training leave over the years meant that I was able to juggle my two lives more easily.

I received my Masters’ degree in animal osteopathy in 2016 and started my practice that same year. I was also able to gradually reduce my working hours to 90% and then 80%, which enabled me to offer animal osteopathy on Fridays and Saturdays.

Being allowed to reduce my working hours has been very important for me because it’s not always easy to juggle my various lives (as a bank employee, as a self-employed animal osteopath and my private life). My colleagues may “only” see me for four days a week, but I actually work six or even seven days a week, not to mention the hours I spend doing my rounds or working on admin in the evenings. That leaves me very little time for myself.

“People tend to be surprised by my unusual career path, but I get by.”

It’s a delicate balance to strike – one that has demanded immense organisation and an ability to constantly adapt. But every session is like a breath of fresh air for me and the benefits for my personal well-being are second to none.

People tend to be surprised by my unusual career path, but I get by. If it weren’t for the opportunities offered by the bank, the ability to adjust my working hours and the support I’ve received and continue to receive from my colleagues and managers, I would never have made it to where I am today.