having it all, lean in & work/life balance

luvmylocsluvmylocs Posts: 7,578Registered Users
did y'all see the 60 min special with facebook coo sheryl sandberg and her new book lean in encouraging women to more agressively seek leadership positions in the workplace.

then today this is a top story on cnn asking different women to address the topic of "can women have it all?"

of course there's still some negative backlash towards the female ceo of yahoo who said no more telecommuting, everyone in the office or leave.

then yesterday on yahoo i saw this story about an accomplished exec regretting not having kids for her career.

what do y'all make of this? is the facebook lady on to something? are women to passive in their careers? does taking away telecommuting punish women and the pursuit of work/life balance? do you think women can have it all? do you? why or why not?
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  • webjockeywebjockey Posts: 2,786Registered Users
    If she was doing the mom thing without all that money, then maybe I'd listen with a half ear.

    My problem with this whole thing, and Europe has figured this out all ready, is that it is good for society as a whole when you create family-friendly society with things parental leave, and other social supports. That's where the conversation needs to be. All of this other stuff is ******** and a distraction from focusing on the real problems in our society.
  • spiderlashes5000spiderlashes5000 Posts: 17,495Registered Users Curl Neophyte
    I certainy don't "have it all." But I am a (single) mother and I have a career. Actually working on two careers. And I have a life. So that is definitely a lot.

    The reason I haven't accomplished more isn't bc it's impossible or unrealistic or undesirable; it's bc of bd decisions I've made and certain handicaps I started out with that make it harder/slower for me.

    But yes, I think other women can have it all and there's no real reason why I can't too if I get my mind right.

    Some women are too passive in their careers. Or they are in the wrong careers. Or they are with the wrong organization. And of course there is plenty of discrimination still around. But IMO a lot of the lack of advancement is bc they don't have mentors/role models.

    It can be any number of things.

    Seriously, think about it, how many women in your circle do you know who grew up w/ a mom who was a shot caller at her job or was running her own business? Or who could even realistically identify such a woman and had access to this woman for mentoring? I didn't.

    Growing up, most of us had mothers who were SAHMs or mothers who worked in low status positions. Or/or who weren't really into their careers and were just working for extra money to lighten the burden on their husbands. That's how it was in my generation. They got a sense of independence from the job, which was good. But it wasn't a sense of power or leadership or vision or least not from what I have seen.

    I've never telecommuted, but for me, I know I would screw off most of the week if I didn't have to show up at the office...unless I was working from home at my OWN BUSINESS. Then i would be invested enough. But even still I would want time during the day to really focus (or be on the road or mtg w/ clients or whatever) where I would want/need my kids to be elsewhere.

    But yes, mothers of young kids need some flexibility built into their schedules. Or else a hella support system.

  • JosephineJosephine Posts: 14,175Registered Users
    Overall I agree with her that people, and more so women do have double standards for women. When it's okay for dads to be a part time parent, moms have to be a full time parent and have another full time job at the same time. Not saying that everyone thinks like this but I noticed the older generation seems to. I'm sure there are some super women/men that can do 2 full time jobs successfully at the same time but I don't know many.

    I didn't get the impression that she was saying to pick your career over your family but that you don't have to be perfect at both.

    As far as having it all, I think that means what I described above(be as or almost as involved as a SAHM and have a career at the same time) and it's not my definition of having it all at all. But I think it is for some and since it's hard to do, many will be disappointed/frustrated.

    From what Ive seen more women than men are passive when it comes to demanding pay.

    I've unfortunately worked for companies that don't generally allow telecommuting and it sucks. It's pretty backwards, especially to remove that option. I don't see how it's good for company morale or trust.
  • multicultcurlymulticultcurly Posts: 5,132Registered Users
    I just watched the 60 minutes episode, and I heard her interviewed on another news outlet. I like what she has to say, and I don't think her advice is elitist.

    I agree with WebJockey that the workplace is not accommodating to people who place a high value on being involved with family, especially very corporate environments. However, I think Cheryl is saying that even without those changes being made, many women could change how they view themselves.

    I agree with Spiderlashes and Josephine that most women do not ask for their market value when it comes to salary, and there are women who put their own needs behind those of their co-workers, husbands and family to the point that they end up not being fulfilled in their careers or home life.

    I think also that with each generation, women become more comfortable with putting themselves first. Even with Cheryl's success, she still does that (annoying) thing of downplaying her skills and success. I don't notice this so much with women under 40 now or even those in their early 40s.

    Cheryl's message seems to be more about being true to who you are and going after what you want. I don't think women have to stop being feminine, but just accept that they have a right to be at the table - regardless of the field - and do what is in their best interest to take their lives and career in the direction they want to go.
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