On The Job: Who Gets Respect?
In her new movie, The Switch, Jennifer Aniston plays a woman who chooses to be a single mom. Bill O’Reilly criticized that phenomenon—just as Vice President Dan Quayle famously did when he knocked Murphy Brown for doing it back in the 90s.
So Aniston has been thrust in a debate and argued that while it might not be ideal, every woman has the right to be a mom—without necessarily having a husband in the mix. That got us thinking about the workplace battle between employees with families and those who don’t have kids. Employees without children argue that many companies have become too family-friendly and bend over backward for employees with kids. But employees with kids—especially women – argue that when it comes to promotions and clout that they are at a disadvantage and that it’s difficult to compete with non-parents when it comes to long hours or often-brutal travel schedules—without it affecting their families.
What’s your take? Do parents or non-parents have it better in today’s workplace with regard to flexibility and opportunity for advancement? And then there’s the issue of money. Women without children earn more in professional roles than their counterparts with kids–a fact we were reminded of during Elena Kagan’s appointment to the Supreme Court.
A modern day national maternity policy, among other shifts in the law and workplace culture, could eliminate the “parenting penalty” when it comes to pay, but in the meantime, what’s your take on how this has played out for you and women you know?