In a previous blog I wrote about the benefits that on-site daycare centers can offer to working mothers who want to return to work but don´t want to be far from their new bundle of joy (http://www.allbusiness.com/blog/WorkingMothers/11535/004393.html).
Today I came across a very interesting article written by a mother of three who owns the advertising agency T3. Years earlier she was floored, and, frankly, frightened, when four of her top employees told her in one six-week period that they were pregnant. Imagine owning a small company and finding out that some of your top workers may be leaving to stay at home and care for their infants, or that they may be considering a new job that allowed more flexibility when it came to childcare.
The author, Gay Gaddis, said that a few months before these women were to go on maternity leave, she made a radical offer: to allow the mothers to bring their children to work.
That´s right. Not to put them in a daycare on site, but to actually bring them into the work place, binkos and all.
Her office at the time was a historic home in Austin. Since babies sleep much of the day, Gay set the space up with swings and cribs and other baby-related necessities. If one mother had a meeting, the rest of the women watched over that mother´s child until she returned. Gay said that no one "dropped the ball´ when it came to work because they were happy to be able to both return to work and to take their infants with them.
Now the company has more formal policies. Mothers can only bring their children with them until the age of 9 months, when they become more mobile. At that time the company puts them on a waiting list for a daycare center in the neighborhood.
I wanted to share this article because I found it so great that a company would actually take such a drastic step-and, yes, allowing a mother to bring an infant to work when it hasn´t been done in a company before is definitely drastic!-is so great. With innovative company owners such as this, working mothers may one day have a lot more opportunities when it comes to returning to work after the birth of an infant.
You can read the article in its entirety here