September 30, 2021


by: admin


Tags: BacktoSchool, Deloitte, Exec, Leaders, Mom, Parents, Season, support, Uncertain, Ways


Categories: Parenting

Deloitte Exec Mother on three Methods Leaders Can Assist Dad and mom Throughout Unsure Again-to-College Season

It’s no secret that the pandemic poses a particular challenge for working mothers – in fact, a Deloitte Global survey found that 82 percent of U.S. women feel their lives have been affected by the pandemic, and 70 percent of those women are concerned that their Career growth will be limited as a result.

The good news is that many organizations have taken steps to provide some relief in the form of virtual work improvements, care support, wellness resources, and increased flexibility. The bad news is that yet another unsafe school year has raised concerns that flexible schedules and childcare grants may not be enough to keep a second wave of “you cessation” at bay as burnout and wellbeing challenges continue to mount. Organizational programs and guidelines are important, but there is something else when it comes to helping mothers be successful at work: creating a culture in which women communicate flexibility needs, boldly set boundaries, and build stronger Relationships can invest.

When the only thing more unpredictable than your work calendar is your child’s school schedule, even the most promising new guideline doesn’t seem enough to help them get through the toughest days. However, knowing that you really have the understanding and support of your team and leaders can make a world of difference. Fostering a sense of belonging and acceptance is vital, and it is the role of leadership to set the tone. Here are some ideas I’m trying to keep in mind to build a culture of inclusion and support for all professionals – and these approaches can be particularly beneficial for working mothers.

Unlearn old ways of working

The hybrid, remote workforce is here to stay. For this reason, it is time to thoroughly review our old ways of working and identify areas where we can “unlearn” habits that no longer exist in most organizations today. The 9 to 5 working day and the rigid orthodoxy of having employees “on the clock” at certain times are a thing of the past for many companies. Instead of offering working conditions that focus on specific working hours, now is the time to change that mindset and become more result and result driven. By focusing on the results of the employees, you not only treat them as professionals who can be trusted to get their jobs done, but you also allow them to be flexible and plan their work according to the needs of their family and life. When school starts again, it is up to the leaders to create a culture of inclusivity for everyone. In other words, it should no longer be a novelty for an employee to miss a meeting to attend a soccer game or virtual parent-teacher conference. By unlearning old ways of working, we can enable our employees to move beyond work-life balance to work-life integration.

Discuss necessary changes

Change only happens when we question the status quo, and that takes courage – especially from those in leadership positions. Having the courage to speak up about changes needed to support colleagues, whether advocating flexible scheduling or highlighting proximity bias in performance reviews, is an essential responsibility of a leader.

In my experience, courage usually comes on three levels: first, it’s important to have courage around others by challenging them to understand the impact their behavior has on their teams; Second, managers should have the courage to deal with long-cherished organizational constructs and attitudes that promote cultural equality; After all, it is imperative that you have the courage to talk about yourself, reveal your personal needs and requirements, and stand up for your personal impact. I think courage is contagious; When others see you saying something, create opportunities for those around you to do the same.

Give grace to yourself and others

One mantra that I have returned to over the past 18 months and that has greatly helped my wellbeing is “giving grace.” The pandemic has encouraged us to be more sympathetic to each other in authentic moments like the doorbell ring for food delivery, dogs barking, or children appearing in a video conference for help with homework. Having grace for one another deepens the human connection in the team and with the leaders. As a working mother and executive at Deloitte, it is my responsibility and a great privilege to show friendliness and humor in these inevitable moments.

We all have our own difficulties at work, at home, and everywhere in between, but knowing that there are leaders out there who understand and support working mothers is an advantage with any challenge – whether it’s a shared office (ahem , Kitchen table) with your middle school student who is studying remotely or returning to an ever-changing job after maternity leave. We have learned so much in the past year and a half, and now is the time to put those lessons into practice.

Kavitha Prabhakar is Principal and Chief Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) for Deloitte US. She co-chairs the Black Action Council for Deloitte, which is focused on developing Deloitte’s long-term strategy to empower Black colleagues and communities by developing a culture of anti-racism for our employees, businesses and our communities. Kavitha also co-leads the Executive Women in Technology initiative for Deloitte’s CIO program, which focuses on connecting female CIOs / CTOs.


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