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Memo to the Boss: Get up to Speed!

Generations of working moms have fought the battles at home for more help and support in our careers. And guess what? Today, our partners are doing the dishes, splitting childcare responsibilities and recognizing their earning potential. So what's the next big battlefield? The workplace.

Care.com surveyed 1000 working moms to get a sense of how you're feeling at home - and at your jobs. I have to say, as a Mom and a CEO, I was really pleased to get these results. Moms like being working parents more than ever before!

Most indicated they love being a great role model for their children, feel more creative and motivated as a working-parent, and even feel they add a better perspective at their jobs now that they are moms.

And 89% of moms in dual-income households feel that their spouse/partner supports their career goals.

Does this news surprise you? We all know how hard it is to juggle work objectives, personal relationships, having fun, finding childcare, school agendas, parental concerns (as in, the seniors in our lives), and the newest kid interest (what do you mean -- you don't like dinos anymore?!).

But here's the bad news -- working moms don't always feel supported at work:

  • 73% do not have child care benefits at their jobs.
  • 36% feel that family obligations are impacting their ability to advance professionally.
  • 56% agree that spending time with family instead of at the office impacts professional development.
  • Nearly 40% have felt judged as a working parent.

So Moms, what do we do about this lack of support? Like the generations before us, it's partly our responsibility to make a change. Here's what I suggest:

We could ask our HR departments for more childcare benefits (send them this Workplace Solutions information). We could initiate the planning of lunches with colleagues -- rather than happy hours. We could start talking to our supervisors about career goals - and a plan for reaching them. And we can get over our fear of being judged as parents. Instead, focus on the strengths you have as a Mom: multi-tasking skills, ability to juggle stressful tasks, negotiating tactics, staying on top of trends, great managers, classic over-achiever tendencies.

And the reality is that this survey shows that working moms are seeing themselves as mothers who work -- not as working moms -- and that they not only have ambitions, but find that they are better contributors in the workplace because they are moms. Professional aspirations aren't being abandoned for raising a child. Families are supporting each other -- it's the workplace that needs to catch up.


So, tell me: Do you feel supported at work? Have you put career goals on hold to be a Mom? What's the hardest part about being a working parent? What are your tips for managing work and family? 

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