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My own journey balancing professional and family responsibilities.

While I acknowledge that there’s still progress to be made in achieving women’s equality, I wanted to take a moment on this International Women’s Day to highlight some of the strideswe’ve made and share a bit about my journey balancing professional and family responsibilities.

In the early stages of my career, when family wasn’t on my radar, I was all about putting in the hours, taking on last-minute trips, and diving headfirst into work without a second thought. And honestly, it worked for me back then. But as life tends to do, things changed when family came into the picture. Suddenly, I was torn between advancing my career and being there for my family. It’s a dilemma many of us face at some point, and for a long time, this juggling act fell mainly on women’s shoulders. Women often found themselves putting their careers on hold or settling for roles that offered the flexibility needed to manage the demands of young children, while men pursued career advancement with fewer constraints.

This narrative is all too familiar when speaking with older generations who lament the way their children were raised almost exclusively by their mothers. But I’m happy to say this story has shifted significantly. More and more employers are starting to recognize and accommodate the demands of family life. Whether it’s providing flexibility to tend to a sick child, offering remote work options, or extending leave when childcare plans fall through. These accommodations have proved invaluable to me as a working mother. But this new culture’s benefits extend well beyond mothers, positively impacting everyone.

Millennial fathers, for instance, spend an average of three times more time with their children
than previous generations. This shift is facilitated by workplace policies such as paid sick leave and flexible schedules, but most importantly, by a corporate culture that prioritizes familial responsibilities for all employees. The broader implications of this cultural shift are profound. Not only does it contribute to a more balanced upbringing for children, who get to spend more time with both parents, but it also addresses the challenges faced by employers grappling with recruitment difficulties and talent shortages. By fostering an environment that supports work-life balance, companies can access a larger pool of skilled individuals, particularly young parents, while simultaneously enhancing overall employee well-being and productivity.

I attribute much of my professional growth and satisfaction to the flexibility afforded by my workplace, and I’m so proud to see this shift happening in my generation. So, as we celebrate International Women’s Day, here’s to recognizing our progress and to a generation that’s forging a path towards more effectively balancing career and family life—with invaluable support from understanding partners and employers. Here’s to continued progress and inclusivity in the workplace. Cheers!

Millennial Father Stats:

My Post from last year’s IWD