Kristin Rowe-Finkbeiner and Joan Blades have published a new book entited The Motherhood Manifesto: What America’s Moms Want:And What to Do About It.
Read an interview of Rowe-Finkbeiner by Celina De Leon of Feministing here. Below is an excerpt:
Do you think, in general, mothers are respected in the workplace? Or do you think fellow co-workers see them as a burden?
That, I can’t answer. We do know that, again, 82 percent of American women have children by the time they are 44. So, the majority of women in the workforce are mothers.
As far as what happens with mom versus non-mom, I think that”conflict”is over hyped by the media. On the whole, women have vastly more in common, than they have differences. That’s not to say all policy and cultural changes are all easy. One good example of a positive workplace culture change is at Best Buy. Best Buy innovators turned Best Buy’s corporate offices, which includes about 2,000 employees, into a results-only work environment, so that all employees, mothers and non-mothers, men and women, have completely flexible work hours as long as they get their work done.
At Best Buy they found that when the workplace culture is changed, particularly by doing things like getting rid of the”sludge”talk in the office and making the programs available to all employees, there were great results. An example of”sludge”talk would be:”Oh, she’s a mom. She’s going to leave early.”
With this program there was better performance by all employees, so the company was happy. There was higher employee retention and lower training and recruitment costs because people were not leaving their jobs. The company was happy, and the employees were happy:both people with children, and people without children. They even have little buttons that say”No sludge.”I actually have one. Many of the family-friendly solutions that are out there are helpful to everybody.