Diva (UK) - - Contents -

I quit my job to travel the world


Six months ago, 24-year- old Kai­ley Willetts was on Facebook when a pop-up job ad for BA ap­peared. She sent off an ap­pli­ca­tion, packed in her job work­ing back­stage in theatre, and em­barked on a brand new ad­ven­ture at 36,000 feet. We brought her back down to earth to tell us more.

DIVA: De­scribe an av­er­age day in five words.

KAI­LEY WILLETTS: Sleep, eat, fly, eat, sleep... That sounds a lot more bor­ing than it is!

What’s the best thing about your job?

See­ing the world and meet­ing new peo­ple. Go­ing to places I’d never nor­mally choose and fall­ing in love with them.

What’s the worst thing about your job?

The lack of sleep and be­ing away from the wife and puppy. But dis­tance makes the heart grow fonder, and all that jazz.

Has your sex­u­al­ity or gen­der iden­tity ever been an is­sue?

BA is a com­pany which is very di­verse with a large num­ber of LGBT em­ploy­ees. If any­thing, it’s more wel­com­ing and makes me feel at ease.

Did you ever have any doubts about be­ing out at work?

I have to come out ev­ery sin­gle time I get to work. We fly with a dif­fer­ent crew each flight so that’s a whole new group of peo­ple you have to get to know, and com­ing out is a big part of that. Ob­vi­ously, the only other is­sue is go­ing to coun­tries where the LGBT com­mu­nity aren’t as wel­come as they are in the UK, but it’s all about adapt­ing.

What ad­vice, if any, would you give to some­one not out at work?

Have faith in peo­ple. The world is a lot more ac­cept­ing than you would ever know.

What’s the fun­ni­est thing that’s hap­pened to you at work?

You’d be sur­prised about how many pro­pos­als we get. Mainly from stag par­ties, but I’ll al­ways take the com­pli­ment!

What one su­per­power would make your job eas­ier?

To be able to speak ev­ery lan­guage or mind read. Maybe mind read in ev­ery lan­guage, ha!

What’s the best ca­reer ad­vice you’ve been given?

Be happy and put your­self first. The job will be done if you’re there or not and if you’re not happy then you won’t have a pas­sion for what you do.

How do you mea­sure suc­cess?

Hap­pi­ness. I spent a long time bring­ing my work home with me and it was drag­ging me down. Now I get up ev­ery morn­ing and ac­tu­ally look for­ward to what I’m do­ing.

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