When Peter MacKay, the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, made the comments that "women don't apply to be judges because they fear the job will take them away from their children," and that "children need their mothers more than their fathers," with one fell swoop, he handed successful working women some more unnecessary guilt, and made dads everywhere feel marginal, or even, optional, during the first few years of a child's life.
How many of us knew that we would love our children so much that it would terrify us, but that we would also resent the erosion of our independent personhood, and wonder why our husbands didn't feel similarly eroded? Or how much more often we would dwell on our failures than on our successes as wives and mothers
It goes without saying, but I'll say it anyways. Being a working mother is a never ending balancing act. My children have always had a politician for a mom; I was elected to Toronto's city council before they were born. My chosen career -- and my choice to run for Mayor -- means that my life is, to a certain degree, public.
Work-life balance used to be a straightforward concept: you worked during the day and your evenings and weekends were yours. Today however, mobile technology keeps us constantly connected. In order to promote healthy work-life balance in a wireless world, companies need to create an environment that supports a new model: work-life integration.
When did the term "working mom" come into the popular vernacular? I cannot, for the life of me, figure out why any woman with a job and children would describe herself as a working mom. My husband is a wonderful father, and great business leader, however, he does not refer to himself as a working dad. In fact, I don't know one man who works while raising a family and calls himself a working dad. So why do we?
I know that you seldom have a hot cup of coffee or tea. I know that your attention is always divided, often diverted from a moment to moment basis, and you cannot ever count on completing a task in the one go. I know that you probably don't get any down time when you're on your own at home, unless you have a single child who still naps in the daytime. I know the challenges you deal with daily, usually with no peer support or backup. The toddler tantrums, the toilet training accidents, the food battles, the food on the floor, the crayons on the wall, the sibling rivalry, the baby that never seems to stop crying.
It's a fast-paced world and women work hard. We have homes to maintain, families to care for and demanding jobs. All this takes mountains of energy yet we continue to spend time on things that don't really interest or support us. It's time for women to cut to the chase and do the things that give us energy while getting rid of the rest.
In just a few short decades, the workplace has radically changed. Today, women constitute nearly half of the workforce. There have never been so many women in leadership positions around the world. And there has never been so much talk about being a woman in business. In fact, there has never been a better time in history to be a woman.
As the primary breadwinner for my family, I worked full-time. I had two baby girls 18 months apart. In each case, I continued working until the day before I gave birth and returned to work a mere six weeks after. I committed myself to nursing my babies, even when I had to resort to expressing milk on the road.
Parents are subject to the same questions child-free people are about their tardiness and absences. The difference is that, yes, parents have more reasons that this might happen. We can't make our four-year-olds walk to school themselves or walk themselves home from school, let themselves in and boil up some chicken soup. The issue is how employers treat these differences between employees' life styles.
It was my choice to go back to work six weeks after having my second child and I won't lie, this week was tough. That being said, I awoke each morning delighted to start the day, hit the ground running and engage in my life's work. I figure if nothing else, being excited to head to work is an important metric in my quest to design a tailored life.
A recent article in The Atlantic suggested a more "realistic" approach for women juggling motherhood and career: Have just one child. But I would hate for a woman to think that having just one child is the key to successfully juggling motherhood and career. The real threat to what we want in life is TIME.
According to a recent survey, Canadians would pay their moms an average salary of $161,287 a year for all their hard work. When asked what qualities a Mom of the Year should possess, the answers were several -- being loving, compassionate, hard working, fun loving, a mentor, sacrificing and charitable.
I'm forced to admit that Marissa Mayer's decision to make employers work in office makes good sense, especially given that she is dealing with an under-performing workforce and low employee morale. If Mayer's two main tasks are to rebuild the culture of the organization and to increase revenues, getting employees back together in one space is a good start. That said, there is little doubt that flexible work arrangements and family friendly employment structures are crucial for the success of modern organizations. The challenge for employers is to find a way to offer family friendly work structures that are also good for business.
Sometimes a body just needs to know. To feel a mother's love. To know that she is there. That she's within arm's length, when story lines grow dark. Becoming ominous, sinister. That she is only a whisper away. When the plot thickens to a portentous climax. When the theatrics prove a bit too much to take.
Companies discovered years ago that "mom" was the most influential consumer on the planet. She makes a strong majority of all household purchases from groceries, to clothing, to the family car, and also decides where to get services for the family, like banking, insurance and cable, phone and internet. Here are three important insights about moms that every marketer should know.