Striking a Work-Life Balance with Parents at Ripple
Reinhard Cate is committed to making a difference. Whether for his work colleagues, fellow parents, or migrants like his mother, he aims to always have a positive impact on other people’s lives.
That desire to make a difference is what led him to join Ripple as part of the marketing team in 2018. From day one, he was inspired by the technology’s ability to deliver tangible benefits to people around the world. In particular, he was excited by Ripple’s potential to lower the cost of remittances for workers sending money to family in their home countries.
This capability struck a personal chord because his own mother had left the Philippines as a young woman to help support her family. He was reminded again of her story when he directed an episode of the Ripple video series Pay It Forward that profiled another Filipino woman living and working in Dubai to provide for her kids as a single mother.
“That was a big career milestone for me. To be able to produce and tell that story was incredibly fulfilling.”
With graduate degrees in journalism and development economics, Reinhard is adept at weaving powerful stories of impact throughout his work at Ripple. Today, he is focused on sharing the stories of Ripple’s interactions with people and communities through visual storytelling.
But it’s not “all work, all the time” for Reinhard. Striking a work-life balance is why he joined the Parents at Ripple Employee Resource Group (ERG).
As the father of two small children – Wyatt (age 4) and Isabella (19 months) – the group was an important way to connect with others over shared concerns and to give back as part of the support network for other parents at Ripple.
“The biggest challenge for working parents…[is] to balance your responsibilities at work and your ability to really contribute (at home). That can be really challenging both mentally and physically.”
From the beginning, Reinhard has been impressed by Ripple’s deep understanding of and support for working parents. He says that before the pandemic it was not uncommon to see children in the office while parents without outside care options participated in meetings. Importantly, there was never any judgement by colleagues or the company, and children were made to feel welcome.
Of course, that approach carried over into the pandemic with many colleagues greeting children over video conference during meetings or work calls. For Reinhard, this was critical as he suddenly had to learn how to juggle the demands of work and parenting while his wife kept her hospital shifts and he managed both kids solo for 15-hours a day.
Knowing that others in the ERG were dealing with similar situations provided him with moral support. He says it also provided a steady flow of tips and tricks for cooking meals, where to take the children for breaks, and more.
“It was so nice to have. It makes you realize you’re not alone when you might otherwise be completely stressed out as a mom or a dad. Instead, you have this venue to talk and it’s fantastic.”
Reinhard is also appreciative of the ways in which Ripple demonstrates its support for parents through company policies. In particular, he was impressed by Ripple’s generous parental leave policy, which granted him 12 weeks of leave after the birth of his daughter. Since then, the company has updated its parental leave policy and now grants 16 weeks of leave.
That stood in stark contrast to the experience of having his son while performing gig work. He treasured the ability to support his growing family throughout those first weeks of his daughter’s life with the full support of an understanding employer.
Ultimately, Reinhard believes that Ripple’s generous support of parents has been a boon to the overall company. Employees appreciate working at a company that allows them to enjoy and excel both at work and at home.
Whether at Ripple or somewhere else, he advises parents looking for work to do their research and find a place that understands and supports their unique needs. For him, it has allowed him to be happy in life and successful as both a father and employee while finding yet another conduit for giving back to others.
Learn more about Ripple’s culture and ERGs.