Do working mothers really want flowers?

Mother’s Day is a day to celebrate all the moms, especially those who have managed through an unprecedented year as CEO of their families. Most days we are tired, beaten down emotionally and physically, feeling overworked and underappreciated. As COVID-19 continues to take a toll on daily life, schools, childcare, healthcare, workplaces, and the economy, are employers really doing enough to support women?

In the last year, much has been written about the exodus of working mothers since the onset of the pandemic. While this is an urgent, unprecedented crisis for all parents and their employers, the impact has been felt disproportionately by working moms or perhaps not working moms now. Before COVID-19, many studies reported about 30-40% of new mothers were leaving the workforce within a year of having a baby. And now that number is increasing exponentially across industries. What that means for employers is that their talent pool is shrinking if they don’t act with urgency now.

Employers need to double down on their strategies for retaining women, which should be a critical goal for DEI efforts. Working moms in the last year have been stretched to the limit. Policies need to address the unique reasons for burnout. Expanding access to specialized mental health support, encouraging employees to take time off, and training managers to be empathetic listeners are among the key ways companies can curb burnout right now.

Many leading companies are also creating and tapping into employee resource groups to connect different groups remotely, during a time when isolation is a major struggle. Think about how you can encourage community and sharing, engage employees, and share ideas for ways to address burnout. Sometimes having a moment to slow down and talk through these issues is all someone needs.

The bottom line--It’s been proven that companies positioned to meaningfully address such issues outperform their counterparts. And research data proves this. If you invest in employees and their families you can see more revenue growth because having women, especially diverse women, fosters greater innovation, higher talent retention, and increased productivity.

The time is now to incorporate as part of your DEI strategy ways to address the key talent within your business. Because the reality is, the diverse talent you worked hard to attract is the most likely to be experiencing burnout right now. Make sure your employees know how much you support and value them.

And, even with your own family unit—show your moms that you value and support them. And, that might means something little more than flowers!

Diversity, equity, and inclusion has been the bedrock of our firm since we opened over 75 years ago. As we like to say, it is in our DNA. We believe that to foster diverse leadership and urge diversity of thought, we must do what we can to advance the conversation about diversity, equity, inclusion, accessibility, and belonging in the workplace and the communities in which our workplaces thrive. Through our blog, we share our insights from the perspective of both an employer and employee, regarding emerging issues that affect diverse leaders and workforces. We hope you enjoy our tidbits of legal and practical information, wisdom, and humor. Thanks for joining the conversation!


* indicates required
Back to Page