Working Moms – Friends or Foes?

By · Jun 12

Some of you may have read by now the article on the Motherhood Penalty on Business Week’s working parent’s blog.  The article is about a research study that found working mothers were 100% less likely to get a job interview than women who did not present themselves as mothers on a resume.  While the statistic is quite shocking, what’s really interesting are the sentiments expressed in the comments following the article.

Really, are the mommy wars still going strong?  I am now in an enviroment full of momprenuers, so I rarely run across the non-mom these days.  However, my life at a Fortune 50 company is not that far behind me, and I must admit, I never felt the mommy wars there, either.  So the venom, and defensiveness, of some of the post really surprised me.

I found that once I was a parent, managing an employee became a piece of cake.  Convincing a toddler to eat veggies or go to bed is just as challenging as motivating an employee or managing a crisis at work, and the two worlds – work and home – end up supporting each other very well.  I also know that the year I had my first child was the year I received my highest performance rating at work and I continued to receive high ratings and big bonuses from then on – more than when I wasn’t a mom.

I also know that EVERYONE at my old company was working online after 9:00 PM, kiddos or not.  There just wasn’t time for backstabbing and gossiping or the overall waste of energy that it takes to complain about a co-working leaving to take care of a sick kid.  I attribute this to my former manager who created a very supportive culture.  Frankly, one would look like a real jerk if he or she started griping about someone not pulling their weight.  If you have a problem with someone in your office: First, look at yourself in the mirror – what bothers you about someone else is something that bothers you about yourself.  Second – talk to them directly about it instead of feeding the rumor mill. 

It’s that easy!  I left my last employer to write a series of children’s books dedicated to explaining the world of work to kids (www.mommytrip.com). The intent is to help not only children understand what mom and dad do every day and why they can’t always be around, but also help the parents really ROCK their lives. If mom and dad can build a rich life at home and at the office, then our children are raised in happy homes and the world becomes a better place for everyone. It’s that simple.

I would love to hear if you think the mommy wars are alive and well in your world or not, and if they are, what are you doing to put a stop to them?

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