Saturday, July 23, 2011

New Study Shows Working Mothers Do No Harm to Their Young Children

A new "long-term study by University College London suggests young girls fare better if their mothers go out to work." (link to article and study) I wish that wasn't the headline. I wish that we were past needing or wanting studies and headlines like this that pit working mothers against stay at home ones. Reality is though we still live in a world were women who work, whether by pure economic need or other reasons, are too often made to feel or just feel, that their children will suffer because of it.

We also still live in a country that does not do enough to support working parents. "The ideal scenario for children of both sexes was for both parents to live at home and for both to be working, a finding that will encourage policymakers' moves to help families stay together, if not critics of the rising numbers of working mothers." This should have been the headline for the research. Policies and practices like maternity leave, pay-equity, paid sick leave, compassionate leave are not women's issues, they are family issues and need increasingly to be framed as such for the health of our children, our communities and our nation.

To learn more about the issues please check out the Institute for Women's Policy Research.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

The Bumbling of the Sexes in the Modern Workplace

My latest article, "The Bumbling of the Sexes in the Modern Workplace" was just published on Women Advisors Forum, a new online community of women investment professionals. It offers a fresh take on 'bad behavior' in the workplace. The kind of behavior I wrote about does not make headlines but may be one of many reasons why women are still far from achieving greater success in critical mass in the workplace.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Life Lessons and Never Give up!

I have an 11 year old daughter, Allie, who loves soccer. (pictured left as a snowy spring game in Park City )It started at the age of 4 when I began coaching her mixed team. She and her teammates would run around in little packs, sometimes kicking the ball, sometimes not, but they were out on the field as a team and loving every second of it.

Every season since then she has played. It went from mom coaching to now a professional coach in the Park City League. She practices two to three times a week and we drive her all over Utah it for games and tournaments. In her spare time she is often out there with the soccer ball practicing keeping the ball in the air and her power kicks. Her dad is often out there with her as she has long since passed the skill level of her mother. Watching the two of them together, and her out on the field, makes my heart sing.

We have been watching the watching the Women's World Cup Soccer matches as a family, and yesterday's game between the USA and Brazil will be a time I hope I never forget. (read here) The USA was in the lead early but the game was later tied due to a penalty kick Brazil had on goal that involved a very harsh call by the referee. The US then found themselves down a player for the rest of the game, and Brazil subsequently scored in OT to make the score 2 to 1. It was in the last minutes of overtime play that the US scored the most amazing goal I have every seen. It was to be decided in penalty kicks and the US won.

This team never gave up. They did not allow a referee's horrible call to take away their drive to win, but rather it seemed they used the injustice of it to motivate them. They supported one another and gave it their total all to the very end. Their focus, their intensity, their sense of team was one of the most spectacular moments in women's sports that I have every seen. We were all jumping around the living room screaming and in the middle of it all was my daughter Allie. I have no doubt for a very long time to come when she is feeling defeated and down on that soccer field, and maybe even in life, she will remember that moment. I know I will. If you really want something, never give up.

link to video of the game click here.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

John Hunstman

Just shortly before John Huntsman announced that he would be running for President on June 21st Greg and I had the opportunity to meet him at a small gathering in Salt Lake City.

First impressions? He was a very good speaker, poised, and delivered a strong message which he undoubtedly will be taking on the road. The message was a call for an industrial revolution in the US and renewed faith in the innate strength and leadership of America and the American people.

While serving as Ambassador to China he saw first hand the growth potential of that country but he was bothered how it seemed that many in the US were ready to hand over the top dog position in terms of being a global power. He does not see it that way. He sees the US as having so much that a country like China aspires toward and the call is for the American people to see it that way too.

Are US debt levels unacceptable to him? Yes. Is there a need for tax reform, energy reform, regulatory reform and health care reform? Yes. Is he tired of the divisiveness in this country? Yes. Are lessons is civil discourse needed? Yes. In his short remarks to a very friendly audience filled with close friends and family members he has enthusiastically received. Could he make a great President? Way to early to tell but there is no doubt about his aspirations.

For the record I am neither Democrat nor Republican. I am Canadian!